Research Article|Articles in Press

Body Dysmorphic Disorder: a Critical Appraisal of Diagnostic, Screening, and Assessment Tools


      Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is a psychiatric condition characterized by profound concern about a minor or imagined defect in the appearance of individuals and increased preoccupation with the imagined/perceived defect. Individuals with BDD often undergo cosmetic intervention for the perceived imperfection but rarely experience improvement in their signs and symptoms following such treatment. It is recommended that aesthetic providers evaluate individuals face-to-face and screen for BDD with approved scales preoperatively to determine the candidate's suitability for the procedure. This contribution focuses on diagnostic and screening tools and measures of disease severity and insight that providers working in non-psychiatric settings can utilize. Several screening tools were explicitly developed for BDD, while others were designed to evaluate body image/dysmorphic concern. The BDD Questionnaire (BDDQ)-Dermatology Version (BDDQ-DV), BDDQ-Aesthetic Surgery (BDDQ-AS), Cosmetic Procedure Screening Questionnaire (COPS), and Body Dysmorphic Symptom Scale (BDSS) have been explicitly developed for BDD and validated in cosmetic settings. Limitations of screening tools are discussed. Given the increasing use of social media, future revisions of BDD instruments should consider incorporating questions relevant to patients' behaviors on social media. Current screening tools can adequately test for BDD despite their limitations and a need for updates.


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