Eating Disorders: Malnutrition Tests

Overview

As a part of the physical exam for eating disorders, a doctor may order certain tests to see whether your body is generally healthy. These may include blood or urine tests to check:

  • Electrolyte levels. Electrolytes are minerals, such as potassium, calcium, and sodium. A severe imbalance of electrolytes can lead to seizures, an irregular heartbeat, muscle weakness, and other problems.
  • Levels of iron, sugar, protein, and fat.
  • The function of the kidneys, liver, and thyroid gland.
  • Levels of certain hormones, such as luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) in women and testosterone in men.
  • Levels of vitamins and minerals in the body.

A doctor may also test whether you have difficulty digesting certain foods, such as milk and dairy products.

Credits

Current as of: September 23, 2020

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
W. Stewart Agras MD, FRCPC - Psychiatry