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Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology
Volume 42, n° 3
pages 436-441 (mars 2000)
Doi : 10.1016/S0190-9622(00)90215-9
accepted : 16 August 1999
Rate of body dysmorphic disorder in dermatology patients

Katharine A. Phillips, MDa, Raymond G. Dufresne, MDb, Caroline S. Wilkel, MDb, Carmela C. Vittorio, MDb
Providence, Rhode Island 
From Butler Hospital and the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior,a and the Department of Dermatology,b Brown University School of Medicine 


Background: Dermatologists appear to be the physicians most often seen by patients with the psychiatric condition body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), a distressing or impairing preoccupation with a nonexistent or slight defect in appearance. The frequency of BDD among patients seeking dermatologic treatment is unknown, however. Objective: This study determined the percentage of patients seeking dermatologic treatment who screened positive for BDD. Methods: A validated self-report questionnaire and a reliable defect severity scale were used to determine the rate of BDD in 268 patients seeking dermatologic treatment. Results: A total of 11.9% (95% confidence interval [CI], 8.0%-15.8%) of patients screened positive for BDD. Rates were similar in a community general dermatology setting (14.4% [95% CI, 8.5%-20.3%]) and a university cosmetic surgery setting (10.0% [95% CI, 6.1%-13.9%]). Conclusion: BDD appears relatively common among patients seeking dermatologic treatment. Further research is needed to confirm these findings and to assist dermatologists in identifying these potentially high-risk patients. (J Am Acad Dermatol 2000;42:436-41.)

The full text of this article is available in PDF format.

 Supported by a grant from the National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression (NARSAD) to Dr Phillips.
 Reprint requests: Katharine A. Phillips, MD, Butler Hospital, 345 Blackstone Blvd, Providence, RI 02906.

© 2000  American Academy of Dermatology, Inc. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS@@#104157@@