Body Dysmorphic Disorder

Our research aims to better understand how visual and emotional information is processed in people with body dysmorphic disorder, and how this relates to the symptoms they experience and their clinical outcomes.

Neural mechanisms of perceptual abnormalities and their malleability in body dysmorphic disorder.

One of the main symptoms of body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is a distorted perception of one's appearance. This causes emotional distress, can contribute to poor insight about the cause of one's problems, limits engagement in mental health treatment, and puts individuals at risk for relapse. The results from this study will help us understand how the brains of people with BDD, in combination with their behavior and their emotions, contribute to abnormal visual perceptual processing. Importantly, it will also help us understand if techniques to modify visual processing can change perception. This will lay the groundwork for next-step clinical studies to test new treatments that involve perceptual retraining.

Participation in this study involves 5 study visits within 7-10 days (no more than 16 hours in total). The informed consent discussion and visit 1 will be done online via secure videoconferencing, while the rest of the study visits will require in-person visits at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH). Participation in the study involves the completion of clinical assessments and symptom rating scales, taking photographs of your face to be used in the study tasks, and undergoing a brain MRI scan. You will be compensated for your time should you wish to participate and complete all study visits.

If you are interested in participating in this study, or if you would like to get more information, please contact the research team at

This study is supported by a grant from the US National Institutes of Health (NIH).