|Summary:||ASSOCIATION BETWEEN ALEXITHYMIA AND THE RISK OF EATING DISORDERS IN ADOLESCENT WOMEN FROM PUBLIC HIGH SCHOOLS IN LIMA, PERU Objective. To evaluate association between alexithymia and the risk of eating disorders (RED), adjusted by sociodemographic, academic and clinic variables in adolescent women from public high schools in Lima, Peru. Methods. We carried out a cross-sectional study on women between 12 and 18 years old. We used the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) and the Eating Attitudes Test (EAT-26) to assess Alexithymia and RED, respectively. In addition, we measured age, residence, smoking, alcohol consumption, type of school, self-esteem, anxiety risk, and depression risk. We calculated prevalence ratios with 95% confidence interval (PR (95% CI)) using generalized linear Poisson family models with robust standard errors. Results. In 890 participants, 36.7% had alexithymia and 35.5% possible alexithymia, and 35.7% had RED. Proportion of RED was greater in women with alexithymia (50.5%) than in who had possible alexithymia (30.5%), and who without alexithymia (23.8%) (p<0.001). In the crude model, the probability of RED in women with alexithymia was higher than in women without alexithymia (PR=2.12 95%CI:1.65-2.70), which remained in the model adjusted by statistical criteria (PR=1.54 95%CI:1.19-2.00), and in the model adjusted by epidemiological criteria (PR=1.70 95%CI:1.31-2.20). Conclusion. Alexithymia was associated with RED in Peruvian adolescent school girls. The exploration of this condition in high school students would allow the comprehensive assessment of mental health in adolescents from public schools.|
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