I learned so much at Kartini. The one thing I didn't know when I left was the possibilities that still existed. I am married, with a...
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Viewing blog posts categorized under "Anorexia Nervosa"

Can I Tell You About Eating Disorders?

posted by Julie O'Toole on July 24, 2014 at 3:27pm

Have you ever wondered what to tell your other children and family members about your child’s eating disorder?  Have you ever wished you had a child friendly, succinct and upbeat resource to share?

Along comes a small book to be published shortly from from Jessica Kingsley Publishers, written by Bryan Lask and Lucy Watson called Can I tell You About Eating Disorders?   This little book is apparently one of a series of books written about what the authors refer to as “limiting…

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Food phobia, the Kartini Clinic recipe

posted by Julie O'Toole on April 9, 2014 at 12:50pm

Talking to a mother whose son has just entered our Food Phobia treatment program I realized that I may not have done a very good job stating clearly what our “recipe” for success with this illness has been.  What can a parent expect?  What can a child look forward to?  What if a provider is forced to treat a child with food phobia in an outlying hospital; how might they proceed?

First, a bit about the diagnosis.

Food phobia is the term Kartini Clinic uses for the sudden onset of…

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Mixed Symptoms

posted by Julie O'Toole on April 2, 2014 at 11:10am

Recently I was making our daily rounds at Randall Children’s Hospital and received a lesson from a very young patient of ours.  I say it over and over: “your patients are your teachers”, and it is really true.  I was first told this by Dr. Mizuo Tottori, pediatrician and mentor to many other pediatricians in Hawaii. And life itself has borne out the truth of it, again and again.

This particular little patient has anorexia nervosa and has done very well.  Her parents are competent and…

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How to diagnose the child who “won’t eat”

posted by Julie O'Toole on January 29, 2014 at 1:57pm

This blog will be short as I am preparing to attend and speak at the F.E.A.S.T. conference in Texas this week.  Very exciting!

Recently I was asked to consult on a child who “won’t eat” and who hasn’t eaten for several weeks. Her situation is complicated by English not being the family’s first language and by her entrance into the medical “system” being through the emergency room, but it did remind me how complicated making the correct diagnosis can be in a child who won’t eat. This…

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Why do some people just get it?

posted by Julie O'Toole on July 17, 2013 at 2:28pm

This is a tribute to two people who just plain “get it.”  And, you know, it can be hard to get.  I certainly know many professionals who deeply do not get it, and some who claim they do and yet who really only give it lip service.

The two people I am referring to are mothers of children with eating disorders; they are F.E.A.S.T. mamas, and they are filmmakers.  I am referring, of course, to Charlotte Bevans and Mary Gutteridge, the Bobbsey twins of enlightened animation.

And what…

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Re-training the brain and modifying behavior in eating disorder treatment

posted by Julie O'Toole on March 17, 2012 at 4:11pm

Ah the brain, it's so complex; we are so complex!  What of our behavior is under our control?  What is amenable to cajoling, influence and even coercion? Does this change with age?  How is general willingness and ability to learn affected by a specific brain disorder, or can we generalize?

These issues quite frequently come to the fore during the treatment of food phobia, and even infrequently in the treatment of early onset anorexia nervosa.

Some percentage of our young food phobia…

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The Long Silence

posted by Morgan O'Toole-Smith on August 19, 2011 at 5:00am

Occasionally we invite guest bloggers to write about their experiences in the field. Steve Nemirow has been, among many things, a intake co-ordinator at Kartini Clinic for many years, and has talked to hundreds of families about their struggles to find proper eating disorder treatment for their children. This is one of those conversations.

Life on the Fracture

Recently I was on the phone with a young father from a southwestern state, whose 8 y. o. son was refusing to eat any solid…

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Well, we tried

posted by Julie O'Toole on April 29, 2011 at 3:12pm

There was a recent call for proposals for presentations/workshops from NEDA (National Eating Disorders Association) for the 2011 conference. I responded to this by offering to conduct a workshop for clinicians on "A Systematic Approach to the Treatment of Food Phobia". It was rejected.

I think the many posts here from desperate parents whose children exhibit symptoms of food phobia and who cannot seem to find anyone else to treat them successfully attest to the need for further…

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