-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas
WEDNESDAY, July 27 (HealthDay News) -- A new study suggests that
about one-third of people who want rhinoplasty, also known as a
nose job, also have symptoms of body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) -- a
mental condition in which excessive concern about imagined or minor
defects in appearance interferes with daily life.
Based on their findings, researchers in Belgium are suggesting
that plastic surgeons should be aware of the prevalence of the
disorder among their patients.
"This study shows that the prevalence of BDD symptoms in a cosmetic rhinoplasty population is high and that the severity of symptoms has a clearly negative effect on daily functioning," wrote a team led by Dr. Valerie A. Picavet of University Hospitals Leuven.
For the study, published in the August issue of
Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, researchers surveyed 266 patients seeking a nose job over the course of 16 months.
The investigators found that 33 percent of those questioned had
moderate to severe symptoms of BDD.
Among patients who said that they wanted a nose job for the sole
purpose of improving their appearance, that number jumped to 43
In sharp contrast, just 2 percent of people who needed
rhinoplasty for strictly medical reasons had moderate to severe BDD
Symptoms of BDD are particularly common among people who have
had previous plastic surgery or mental health issues, the study
authors pointed out. In the study, 20 percent of the patients had
had a previous nose job, and they were more likely to have
significant BDD symptoms, the researchers said. Symptoms were also
more common among those with a history of psychiatric problems.
The Belgian team noted that most patients with serious concerns
about their appearance had a nose that would actually be considered
normal in size and shape. Those surveyed who showed more severe BDD
symptoms also had lower quality of life and more problems in their
day-to-day life, including trouble in relationships and low
The researchers concluded that in routinely assessing the
motivations and mental health of people seeking aesthetic surgery,
plastic surgeons should be particularly aware of extreme
preoccupation with appearance.
The U.S. National Institutes of Health provides more information
body dysmorphic disorder.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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