Dysmorphophobic avoidance with disturbed bodily perception. A pilot study of exposure therapy.

I Marks , J Mishan

Abstract

Five chronically disabled dysmorphophobic patients with disturbed bodily perception improved with systematic exposure to avoided situations that evoked dysmorphophobic discomfort, and refraining from behaviours which reduced that discomfort. As avoidance and anxiety improved with exposure, so did associated bodily delusions. Four of the patients had additional problems, for which three cases had drugs at some time. The encouraging pilot results warrant a controlled study of exposure for dysmorphophobic avoidance and anxiety.