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Overeating Assessment Questionnaire

Questions Your Doctor May Ask - and Why!

During a consultation, your doctor will use various techniques to assess the symptom: Overeating. These will include a physical examination and possibly diagnostic tests. (Note: A physical exam is always done, diagnostic tests may or may not be performed depending on the suspected condition) Your doctor will ask several questions when assessing your condition. It is important to openly share any pertinent information to help your doctor make an accurate diagnosis.

It is also very important to bring an up-to-date list of all of your all medical conditions, medications including dosages, and names of numbers of any specialist you see.

Create your printable checklist by answering questions that your doctor may ask below:

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  1. How long have you had to problem of overeating?

    Why: to establish if acute or chronic.

  2. Is the overeating generalized, or are there specific foods that are overeaten?

    Why: e.g. salty foods may be suggestive of Addison's disease or premenstrual tension; sweet foods e.g. chocolate may be suggestive of premenstrual tension; carbohydrate food craving may be suggestive of diabetes.

  3. Do you have any special problems, such as getting bored, tense, upset or depressed?

    Why: these problems can stimulate overeating and comfort eating.

  4. Are you sleep deprived?

    Why: e.g. shift worker, sleep debt, insomnia - may cause overeating.

  5. What is the age of the person with the overeating?

    Why: e.g. it is normal for pubertal adolescents to have increased appetite and appear to be overeating.

  6. Risk factors for obesity?

    Why: e.g. family tendency, female sex, lack of physical exercise, emotional deprivation, depression, poorer social classes, alcohol abuse, cessation of smoking, tricyclic antidepressants.

  7. Past medical history?

    Why: e.g. diabetes mellitus; Grave's disease; Encephalitis may cause injury to the hypothalamus result in excessive appetite and obesity.

  8. Past psychiatric history?

    Why: e.g. bipolar disorder, depression, anxiety, bulimia nervosa, borderline personality disorder.

  9. Medications?

    Why: e.g. steroid medications, some antibiotics, some antidepressants, some pain relief medications and the newer antipsychotic medications may stimulate the appetite and cause overeating; insulin and oral hypoglycemic medications for diabetes may cause low blood sugars and overeating occurs to avoid going "down" into a hypoglycemic attack.

  10. Dietary history?

    Why: The outstanding cause of weight gain is excessive calorie intake coupled with lack of exercise. People with obesity often deny overeating but the true situation can be determined by recording actual food and beverage intake and energy expenditure, and be interviewing a reliable witness.

  11. Exercise history?

    Why: The outstanding cause of weight gain is excessive calorie intake coupled with lack of exercise. People with obesity often deny overeating but the true situation can be determined by recording actual food and beverage intake and energy expenditure, and be interviewing a reliable witness.

  12. Alcohol history?

    Why: excess alcohol consumption may cause a excess weight and may cause a Cushing-like appearance (pseudo-Cushing's syndrome).

  13. Illicit drug use?

    Why: e.g. marijuana intoxication may cause the "munchies".

  14. Cigarette smoking?- Cessation of smoking often causes weight gain due to overeating
  15. Family history?

    Why: e.g. obesity (obesity is influenced by environmental and genetic factors), diabetes mellitus.

  16. Enormous appetite?

    Why: must consider the possibility of an insulinoma or Frohlich's syndrome (also have poorly developed genitals).

  17. Excessive thirst, frequent urination and weight loss?

    Why: the presence of these symptoms with excessive hunger would suggest either diabetes mellitus or Grave's disease.

  18. Weight gain?

    Why: may suggest an insulinoma, Cushing's disease or Obesity.

  19. Diarrhea?

    Why: suggests disorder may be related to a malabsorption syndrome, intestinal bypass or a gastrointestinal fistula.

  20. If diarrhea, what is the nature of the stools?

    Why: e.g. fatty, pale colored, extremely smelly stools that float in the toilet and are difficult to flush away is called steatorrhea due to excess fat in the stool and are characteristic of malabsorption of nutrients which may be due to celiac disease, chronic pancreatitis, previous gastrectomy and cystic fibrosis.

  21. Headache?

    Why: may suggest certain brain tumors (especially large pituitary tumors that invade the hypothalamus and craniopharyngioma a type of hypothalamic brain tumor) or encephalitis that can cause increased appetite and overeating.

  22. Mental retardation?

    Why: the presence of mental retardation with obesity should suggest Laurence-Moon-Bardet-Biedl syndrome or Prader-Willi syndrome.

  23. Symptoms of anxiety, depression or other emotional symptoms?

    Why: may suggest that excessive hunger and overeating is due to anxiety, depression, bulimia nervosa, hysteria or the manic phase of bipolar affective disorder (overeating and excessive appetite when in the manic phase).

  24. Symptoms of diabetes mellitus

    Why: e.g. frequent urination, excessive thirst, weight loss, fatigue, excessive hunger. If diabetes is undiagnosed or poorly controlled, it may cause overeating.

  25. Symptoms of Grave's disease

    Why: e.g. preference for cooler weather, increased appetite, heart palpitations, increased sweating, nervousness, irritability, diarrhea, lack of menstrual periods and proptosis (forward displacement of the eyeball).

  26. Symptoms of bulimia nervosa?

    Why: e.g. recurrent episodes of binge eating; preoccupation with food and weight changes; consumption of high calorie, easily digested food during the binge; termination of the binge by abdominal pain, sleep or vomiting; inconspicuous eating during a binge; repeated attempts to lose weight by frequent vomiting, fasting or use of laxatives or diuretics; frequent fluctuations of more than 4.5kg; awareness of abnormal eating pattern and fear of not being able to stop voluntarily; depressed mood after binge. May have a previous history of anorexia nervosa.

  27. Symptoms of Cushing's syndrome?

    Why: e.g. weight gain especially central abdominal, change of appearance, moon-like face, thin skin, easy bruising, excessive facial hair growth, acne, muscle weakness, lack of or rare menstrual periods, poor libido, depression, psychosis, insomnia, frequent urination, excessive thirst, growth arrest in children.

  28. Symptoms of insulinoma (insulin secreting tumor of the pancreas)?

    Why: e.g. symptoms occur with fasting and are relieved by ingestion of carbohydrates and may include headache, confusion, visual disturbances, muscle weakness, lack of co-ordination, change in personality, faintness, weakness, tremor, palpitations, sweating, hunger and nervousness.

  29. Symptoms of premenstrual tension?

    Why: e.g. breast tenderness, feelings of abdominal distention, increased appetite, food cravings and mental symptoms such as depressed mood, anxiety and irritability occurring for up to 10 days prior to a menstrual period and end one to two days after the period starts.

  30. Symptoms of Addison's disease?

    Why: e.g. pigmentation, tiredness, weight loss, loss of appetite, nausea and diarrhea. May crave and overeat salty foods.

  31. Symptoms of Prader-Willi syndrome?

    Why: e.g. congenital disorder with characteristic features of bizarre eating habits (such as binge eating), obesity, lack of muscle tone in the limbs, small genitals, mental retardation, small hands, small feet, narrow forehead, "almond-shaped" eyes, "tented" upper lip.

Conditions listing medical symptoms: Overeating:

The following list of conditions have 'Overeating' or similar listed as a symptom in our database. This computer-generated list may be inaccurate or incomplete. Always seek prompt professional medical advice about the cause of any symptom.

Select from the following alphabetical view of conditions which include a symptom of Overeating or choose View All.

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