Established in 1970, the Donald Delaney Eating Disorders Clinic is dedicated to the specialized care of preadolescent and adolescent patients ages 10-21 years with suspected eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge eating. Patients should know they are not alone and so should parents.
Compassionate Care for a Complex Condition
A common misunderstanding is that all who suffer from eating disorders are motivated by a desire to look a particular way. In fact, there are multiple reasons why a teen or even a younger child may have an eating disorder, including social pressures, psychological and biological causes.
Eating disorders can eventually become life threatening in the absence of care, and treatment from health professionals is critical for proper mental and physical development.
We recognize the complexity in diagnosing and treating eating disorders. Our team emphasizes a personal approach to care that addresses the unique needs of each patient. The clinic’s highly qualified multidisciplinary team includes experts in psychology, medicine, and nutrition to treat the physical and emotional aspects of the disorder, while also educating and empowering patients to live a healthier lifestyle — nurturing a healthy body and mind.
Over the course of a few visits, our specialists will complete an initial evaluation, diagnosis and develop a treatment plan. The evaluation may include diagnostic interviews with the patient and parents, self-report questionnaires, and medical examinations. The frequency of visits is determined by the severity of illness, but most patients begin treatment on a weekly basis and taper that schedule as the condition improves. Patients can also opt into using animal-assisted interventions during evaluations or treatment sessions so patients and families can interact with therapy dogs during visits.
In addition to an initial evaluation and diagnosis, our services include:
- Coordination with outside doctors, therapists, and nutritionists
- Individual psychotherapy
- Inpatient hospitalization (if necessary)
- Medication evaluation and monitoring
- Nutritional counseling
- Parent counseling
- Referral to other specialists (if needed)
View the Eating Disorders Clinic flyer (en español).
Additional Health and Nutrition Programs
Parents of infants or children under age 12 with feeding disorders should contact the Gastroenterology Clinic at 202-476-3032 or Endocrinology Clinic at 202-476-2121.
Parents of children or adolescents with obesity should contact the IDEAL Obesity Clinic at 202-476-7200.