Women with anorexia nervosa, a serious eating disorder are more likely to have both unplanned pregnancies and induced abortions, a study has said.

The study by researchers of University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Norwegian has found this in comparison with those who don't have the serious eating disorder. The study also reveals that women with anorexia may have a mistaken belief that they can't get pregnant because of they have irregular periods or not having menstrual periods.

These results may be driven by a mistaken belief among women with anorexia that they can’t get pregnant because they are either not having menstrual periods at all or are having irregular periods.

“Anorexia is not a good contraceptive,” said Cynthia M. Bulik, PhD, the study’s lead author and director of the UNC Eating Disorders Program. “Just because you’re not menstruating, or because you’re menstruating irregularly, doesn’t mean you’re not at risk for becoming pregnant.”

The study is being published in the November 2010 issue of the journal Obstetrics and Gynecology . Data from 62,060 women were analyzed, including 62 women who reported having anorexia nervosa.

Bulik said that doctors need to educate patients with anorexia on sexuality and contraception, similar to what they do with other girls and women. The doctors need to be aware of when their patients have eating disorder to ensure proper treatment.The researchers advised screening for eating disorders during prenatal visits.