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Eating Disorders in Type 1 Diabetes: A Case-Based, Evidence-Based Comprehensive Review of Diagnosis, Treatment, and the Role of the Multidisciplinary Team

Friday, March 24, 2017: 4:00 PM-5:30 PM
Del Mar II (Green Valley Ranch)

Background: The care of patients with Type 1 diabetes mellitus and comorbid eating disorders is limited by low clinician/physician familiarity, yet patients have the highest mortality rates of any eating disorder. In this case- and evidence-based workshop, clinicians will radically increase their ability to diagnose, refer, and personally treat these patients.

Objectives: 1) Review the current data relating to prevalence, morbidity, and mortality surrounding concurrent diabetes and eating disorders 2) Be able to identify patients with these concurrent diagnoses, and advocate to establish a capable multidisciplinary team 3) Describe appropriate treatment modalities and communication techniques that have a higher chance to help patients move toward recovery

  • A detailed review of eating disorders in type 1 diabetes and eating disorders:
    • Refreshing or establishing the knowledge base
    • Identifying that diabetes is a fundamental part of the eating disorder
    • Reviewing the current and classic literature in detail for prevalence and outcomes in particular
  • Patient Perspective: Risk factors for ED in T1D


  • Symptoms/Behaviors unique to ED in T1D
  • Insulin omission triggers
  • Tools for assessing ED in T1D
  • DSM-5 and "Diabulimia" (how to know which code to use when)


  • Protocols for treating comorbid ED and T1D
  • Importance of the multidisciplinary team
  • Research on treatment outcomes
  • Patient Perspective: What patients want you to know.

Patients with Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus have a 240% increased incidence of developing an eating disorder (whether by DSM-V criteria or subclinical) than any other group, and the morbidity and mortality of these conditions, when comorbid, are greater than the sum of their parts. Plagued by delayed diagnosis, inexpert physicians and wary mental health and dietary clinicians, and with far fewer options for higher levels of eating disorder care than for those with pure eating disorders, patients with comorbid type 1 diabetes and eating disorder face substantial obstacles to good care. In this case-based workshop, Dr. Gaudiani partners with two superb experts on this subject, Erin Akers and Dawn Lee-Akers, who founded Diabulimia Helpline. Erin and Dawn teach comorbid type 1 diabetes and eating disorders to programs and clinicians around the country through webinars and live lectures, and their advocacy for patients and families is unparalleled in the country. These three experts will teach critical aspects of these comorbid conditions, intending that young as well as experienced clinicians will find the information practical, enlightening, and useful. Evidence-based literature will be cited throughout, highlighting both medical and mental health strategies and outcomes that are on the cutting edge. Clinicians can expect to learn in detail about the current evidence base and will radically increase their ability to diagnose, refer, and personally treat these patients.
Primary Presenter:
Jennifer Gaudiani, MD, CEDS

Dr. Jennifer L. Gaudiani, MD, CEDS, is the Founder and Medical Director of the Gaudiani Clinic, a unique outpatient internal medicine clinic dedicated to adults with eating disorders. One of very few CEDS internists in the US, Dr. Gaudiani completed her undergraduate degree at Harvard College, her medical degree at Boston University School of Medicine, and her residency in internal medicine at Yale. For almost eight years, Dr. Gaudiani helped run the ACUTE Center at Denver Health. She has lectured and published extensively on the medical complications of eating disorders and sits on the iaedp Board.

Erin Akers, BA

Erin Akers is the CEO and founder of Diabulimia Helpline, a non-profit organization dedicated to support, awareness and advocacy for the co-morbidity of diabetes and eating disorders. She possesses an extensive knowledge about the disorder, resources available for those battling the disorder, and the challenges facing both the medical and psychiatric community. Erin works closely with clients, treatment centers and medical professionals to ensure everyone has the information they need to work toward recovery. She has published numerous articles and has lectured extensively on this topic around the country, at national academic conferences as well as treatment programs.

and Dawn Lee-Akers, BA

Dawn Lee-Akers serves as the CFO and Medical Outreach Coordinator for Diabulimia Helpline and is a founding Board member of Diabulimia Helpline. She has spent the last six years providing support, education and advocacy for people struggling with the comorbidity of diabetes and eating disorders, and their families. She has researched and developed resource materials, presented webinars to treatment programs around the country, and forged connections in both the eating disorder and diabetes communities, with the goal of bringing together the research and experts in this field to advance prevention, recognition and treatment.

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