Project: Research project

Project Details


This study proposes to investigate the treatment response of body
dysmorphic disorder (BDD) in adolescents. Body dysmorphic disorder, a
preoccupation with an imagined or slight defect in appearance, is a
distressing and impairing disorder that is more common than is generally
recognized. BDD usually begin during childhood or adolescence, but its
treatment in adolescents has not been investigated. Such investigation
is important because BDD appears to often be chronic and to cause
considerable morbidity. It is associated with high rates of social and
academic/occupational impairment, being housebound, psychiatric
hospitalization, suicidal ideation, and suicide attempts.

Preliminary data from adults and adolescents suggest that BDD and its
delusional variant (a type of delusional disorder, somatic type) may
respond to serotonin-re-uptake inhibitors. Furthermore, similarities
between BDD and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) make these
medications promising for adolescent BDD. The primary specific aim of
this study is to assess the efficacy and safety of fluoxetine versus
placebo in BDD and its delusional disorder variant in 100 adolescents
age 12-17. The proposed study will be a 12-week double-blind parallel-
group trial that will occur at three sites: Butler Hospital/Brown
University, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, and The University of
Cincinnati School of Medicine. A secondary specific aim is to explore
the predictors of treatment response. The hypothesis to be tested is
that delusionality (insight), comorbid major depression or OCD, and
illness severity will not predict fluoxetine response.

The proposed study will provide needed data on BDD's treatment in
adolescents. It will be the first controlled treatment trial of BDD in
an adolescent age group. Such investigation is needed because this
under-recognized, often-secret disorder usually begins during
adolescence and can cause significant distress and impairment in
functioning. When untreated, adolescent-onset BDD appears to often
interfere with the developmental tasks of adolescence, to persist, and
to cause substantial morbidity through out the life span.
Effective start/end date3/15/992/29/04


  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.