A Fine Line: The Intersection of Mental Health and Medical Treatment of Eating Disorders

Date: 08/04/2015, 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Ouisie's Table (click venue name for map)

Oliver-Pyatt Centers present:

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A Fine Line: The Intersection of Mental Health and Medical Treatment of Eating Disorders

Perhaps no illness is more indicative of the treatment needs of patients with highly complex co-morbid mental health and medical illness than eating disorders.  Anorexia nervosa has the highest mortality rate of any mental health diagnosis with some dying of suicide but many more succumbing to medical problems.   Complications generally result from organ failure from malnutrition but also from alcohol and drug use compounding the physiological deterioration with eating disorders as well as those related to alcohol or recreational drug use mixed with medications targeting anxiety and depression.  Particularly challenging are the situations where physical symptoms may mask the underlying emotional illness such as that seen with somatization and anxiety-related illness.  Physical symptoms may be true manifestions of physical illness, psychosomatic symptoms or other co-morbid mental health illnesses.  This can make diagnosis and treatment of eating disorders or other co-morbid mental health issues very challenging with distraught, often resistant patients.  These challenges with eating disorder treatment  have broader implications for a number of other acute and chronic illnesses in adolescents and young adults, and accurate diagnosis and treatment necessitate the interaction of a multidisciplinary team including mental health, medical and nutrition. This presentation will include a didactic session with presentations from Lauren Ozbolt, MD, a child and adolescent psychiatrist with extensive eating disorder experience and Joel Jahraus, MD, FAED, CEDS, a family physician caring for medical issues of eating disorder patients for many years.

Goals / Objectives:

  1. To understand the acute and evolving needs of patients with eating disorders from a physiologic and emotional perspective
  2. To understand the interplay and potential masking of some aspects of treatment given the complexities of physical and emotional interaction
  3. To understand the risks including potentially life-threatening aspects of care when physical and emotional symptoms present simultaneously
  4. To discuss appropriate evaluation and treatment in a multidisciplinary team setting with emphasis on effective evaluation and treatment of both physical and medical components of the illness utilizing the synergism of effective interaction of team members on both medical and mental health sides of the treatment team

Joel Jahraus, MD, FAED, CEDS

Dr. Joel Jahraus is well-known and respected for his two decades of specialization in the medical management of patients with eating disorders. A board-certified physician for over 30 years, he is a recognized expert on diabetes and the medical complications of eating disorders. Dr. Jahraus came to us directly from Park Nicollet-Melrose Institute in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he most recently served as Executive Director, with program oversight and direct management of patient care. He has been associated with the Melrose Institute (formerly the Eating Disorders Institute) since 1992. In addition to his experience with hospital-based programs, he also served as Medical Director at Remuda Treatment Centers in Phoenix, Arizona, from 2002 to 2004, where he worked with residential and outpatient levels of care.

Dr. Jahraus graduated from Washington University Medical School in St. Louis, Missouri, and has a background in family medicine. He entered an academic career as Associate Director of the University of Minnesota Family Medicine Residency Program. He then took a position as the Predoctoral Director at the University of Minnesota Medical School. During his teaching career at the University of Minnesota Medical School, Dr. Jahraus received the Distinguished Teacher of the Year Award. He co-authored a chapter on eating disorders inTextbook of Psychosomatic Medicine, published by the American Psychiatric Association, and has been featured in various national media, including two public television documentaries on eating disorders. He testified at a United States Congressional Briefing on the need for health insurance coverage for eating disorder treatment. For his outstanding contributions to the field, he received the prestigious Ellis Island Medal of Honor in 2011, and was named a Top Doctor of 2013 by U.S. News and World Report.

Having practiced in Colorado, North Dakota, and Minnesota, Joel is enjoying the warm weather here in South Florida. He has four grown children.

Lauren Ozbolt, MD

Psychiatrist Lauren Ozbolt, MD, grew up in North Carolina where her family sufered through her sister’s struggle with Anorexia and Bulimia. At Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City, she expected to become an Emergency Room doctor, but excelled at psychiatry.

Lauren then became the go-to person for eating disorders at University of Miami Hospital where she founded, and was the Medical Director of, the University of Miami Eating Disorders Program.

Today, Lauren has a psychiatry practice in Los Angeles, works with Monte Nido and Affiliates, and is Medical Director of Oliver-Pyatt Centers’ Clementine Adolescent Residential Treatment Program.

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