Intended for healthcare professionals


Anorexia patient should not be subject to any more compulsory treatment, court rules

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: (Published 13 October 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g6184
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. 1The BMJ

A High Court judge has ruled that any further detention and force feeding would be against the best interests of a young woman who has alternated for years between binge drinking and compulsory inpatient treatment for anorexia nervosa.1

Mr Justice Cobb declared that re-feeding the woman, named as Ms X, would not be in her best interests even though it would prolong her life. He also ruled that it would be lawful for the doctors looking after her at an unnamed NHS foundation trust not to give her nutrition and hydration against her will.

Ms X, the doctors caring for her, the official solicitor representing her, and an independent …

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