Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Barbie Syndrome

Interesting article in the Huffington Post last week by Dr. Glenn D. Braunstein:  Oh, You Beautiful Doll: Plastic Surgery Risks and Rewards.  The article discusses the “Barbie Syndrome” or more accurately “Body Dysmorphic Disorder.”   I love this line

And, finally, try to have realistic expectations--it is unlikely that cosmetic enhancement is going to drastically change your life--after all, you are human, and not a plastic doll.

The article reminded me of my post Suitability.  Not all patients should have surgery.  Their reasons for desiring surgery, goals, and expectations should be discussed during the consultation.  Risks and benefits must be weighed.

 

Body Dysmorphic Disorder

  • In its simplest definition, it is an obsessive preoccupation with a slight, imperceptible, or actually nonexistent anatomic irregularity to the degree that it interferes with normal adjustment within society.
  • This disorder may be present in varying degrees. It is the most common aberrant personality characteristic seen by the plastic surgeon.
  • When postoperative dissatisfaction occurs (and in most cases, it will), it almost always is based on what the patient understood rather than what was actually said.

4 comments:

StorytellERdoc said...

BDS is alive and well. Just talk to anyone at a local gym and you will find they are unhappy about something, and usually it's their best asset. Nice post, Ramona.
Jim

purplesque said...

When you watch those TV shows- about people with rather obvious BDD who have had multiple surgeries to the point of disfigurement, I always wonder- who was their surgeon and how are they going to explain this in court? Most plastic surgeons I know have a pretty good eye for BDD and wouldn't touch someone like that with a ten foot pole- in fact, they usually have a handy referral to a psychologist ready for such patients to get help. Its a strange world..

Great post as always, Ramona.

Jabulani said...

I remember reading about Heidi's multiple surgery, looking at the before and after pictures and thinking, she should have stuck with nature. Personally, I felt she looked better beforehand. But each to their own, huh.

I have a friend who has twice been under the knife for a 'boob job'. She's still not satisfied - after the surgery she was thrilled. A year later, grumbling again. *sigh*

Gizabeth Shyder said...

I echo Jabulani above - a lot of the people I know with who are dissatisfied with a body part and decide to correct it with surgery initially elated and then unhappy. Revisions occur. This is not across the board - and happens often with breast enhancements, from what I know (caveat to those that are happy - I don't know everything - and I do have a smaller number of friends happy with their breast enhancements).

Just proves the old saying - that happiness can only come from the inside.