Pregnancy After Bulimia
Q: I was bulimic during my early twenties. It was so bad that I completely
stopped menstruating for a year. Today I'm 29 years old, I'm no longer
bulimic, and I get my period regularly. I'm also recently married, and
I'd like to have a baby within the next few years, but I'm worried that I did
permanent damage to my body and reproductive system while I was sick. Will I
be able to conceive?
Dr. Donnica: Without examining you, I can't tell if you've had residual
damage from being bulimic. The good news is that you've gotten this situation
under control and your periods have returned to normal. That's usually a good
sign for your future fertility. If you are planning to become pregnant in the
next few years, I recommend starting to take a daily multivitamin with 400 mcg
folic acid. You should also be taking a calcium supplement.
At your next doctor's visit, discuss your concerns and ask whether there are
any other nutritional, medical, or behavioral changes that you can make to get
your body in the best condition for pregnancy. While you're at it, you may want
to be sure your husband is doing his part. Ideally, men and women should stop
smoking or drinking more than 2 alcoholic beverages per day when planning to
conceive. In addition, he may want to switch from briefs to boxers and avoid
exposure to extremely hot temperatures (like hot tubs).
Created: 6/13/2003  - Donnica Moore, M.D.