June 2012
In This Issue
New Refeeding Study
Achievement Award
New ACUTE Unit
ACUTE Outreach
ACUTE Events

June 7-9:
Las Vegas, NV

Ben Franklin Institute Eating Disorders Conference

Rachael Harriman, Exhibiting

June 8-10:
Jackson Lake, WY

Wyoming Medical Society Annual Meeting

Jennifer Gaudiani, MD, Presenting


August 10-11:
Denver, CO

Eating Recovery Center Foundation Eating Disorders Conference

Jennifer Gaudiani, MD, Presenting


The ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders at Denver Health is the nation's only specialized medical stabilization unit for the most medically compromised eating disorder patients. For more information about ACUTE or a free medical assessment, call 877 ACUTE 4U or visit ACUTE online

ACUTE Study Finds High Risk of Serious Complications During Initial Refeeding, Stressing Importance of Proper Treatment


A recent study published in the International Journal of Eating Disorders (45:1 85-92 2012), examined the medical stabilization and refeeding of patients with severe anorexia nervosa. Authored by ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders physicians Drs. Jennifer Gaudiani, Margherita Mascolo, and Phillip Mehler, the study reported data on 25 patients admitted during a 15-month period.


Results demonstrate that serious complications are common in early refeeding, including hypoglycemia, hypophosphatemia and hypothermia and can be fatal without proper medical observation and management. Furthermore, there is no single identifier for determining which of the at-risk patients will develop serious refeeding complications. Due to the severity of potential complications during this time, it is vitally important that these patients receive timely and specialized care in a medical facility with expertise in this area.


How do you know if your patient is at risk?

  • BMI < 16 kg/m2
  • Weight loss of > 15% in the previous 3-6 months
  • Little or no nutritional intake for > 10 days
  • Low levels of potassium, phosphorus, or magnesium prior to refeeding


When properly monitored, patients can begin the initial steps toward recovery avoiding many of the common and potentially fatal complications. ACUTE's unique experience, and high volume of the most severe patients in the country, has led to excellent outcomes, short lengths of stay (average length of stay at ACUTE is 14-21 days), rare need for ICU transfer, and zero mortality amongst a population of the most at-risk patients.


For more information on the study and its results, read the full article online. 


You can help your severe eating disorder patients get the appropriate care by referring them for a free assessment by calling 877 ACUTE 4U or visiting ACUTE online.  

ACUTE Founder Dr. Mehler Receives Lifetime Achievement Award


The Academy of Eating Disorders

Philip S Mehler, MD, FAED, FACP, CEDS
Philip S. Mehler, MD, FAED, FACP, CEDS

recently awarded the 2012 Outstanding Clinician Award to ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders founder Philip S. Mehler, MD, FACP, FAED, CEDS. This award provides international recognition for a lifetime of service and outstanding clinical contributions to the field.


Dr. Mehler has dedicated the past 25 years of his career to the research and medical care of patients suffering from the most severe eating disorders. While most eating disorder experts emphasize mental health care and therapeutic intervention, Dr. Mehler has provided significant contributions to the field by focusing on the diagnosis and treatment of medical complications for this population.


Among Dr. Mehler's achievements is the creation of the ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders at Denver Health (2008), which is the nation's only specialized medical stabilization unit for adults with severe eating disorders. Dr. Mehler serves as ACUTE's Medical Director, where he continues to conduct research and provide life-saving treatment. He is also a Glassman Professor of Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and the Chief Medical Officer of Denver Health.


Read more about Dr. Mehler's award>> 


ACUTE Expands to Better Meet Patient Needs


On June 4, the ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders will open a brand new, dedicated unit at Denver Health that provides patients with a quiet and peaceful place to begin healing. The newly expanded and remodeled unit offers:


  • Private patient rooms
  • Private bathrooms
  • Dedicated nurses' station
  • Flat-screen televisions
  • Wireless Internet access
  • Comfortable family visiting areas




For more information or a free assessment, call 877 ACUTE 4U or visit ACUTE online.


Find ACUTE Information Close to Home


ACUTE's Outreach Manager, Rachael Harriman, will be visiting professionals and treatment programs across the country this summer. If you would like to schedule a visit, or are interested in having Drs. Mehler or Gaudiani speak at your upcoming event, please contact rachael.harriman@dhha.org. We look forward to meeting you!


About ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders at Denver Health


Philip S Mehler, MD, FAED, FACP, CEDS
Philip S. Mehler, MD, FAED, FACP, CEDS

Led by Dr. Philip Mehler and Dr. Jennifer Gaudiani, patients are offered the very best in medical stabilization and treatment, a compassionate and highly experienced nursing staff, individual psychotherapy, physical therapy, and thorough discharge planning to help them begin recovering. The ACUTE Center is tailored to help both males and females who cannot seek care in a traditional inpatient or residential treatment setting due to the severity of their weight loss or other medical complications. ACUTE contracts with most insurance companies and uses the patient's medical

Jennifer L Gaudiani, MD, CEDS
Jennifer L. Gaudiani, MD, CEDS

insurance benefit for stabilization care.


Who to refer to ACUTE for stabilization:

  • Any patient weighing less than 70% of his/her ideal body weight
  • Serious medical complications (electrolyte disorders, fluid problems, organ failure, previous bouts of refeeding syndrome)
  • Need to "detox" from severe purging, laxative or diuretic abuse


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ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders | 777 Bannock St, Denver, CO 80204 | 

877 ACUTE 4U  |  www.denverhealth.org/acute  |  (877) 228-8348