German adult film star Carolin Berger was never quite happy with her new breasts, even after undergoing 5 breast enhancement surgeries. So she opted for a sixth surgery hoping that would do the trick. Berger, who worked under the pr0n name Cora, died on Jan. 20 due to complications surrounding her sixth breast enhancement surgery.
She was 23.
This sad case illustrates the importance of educating the public about Body Image Disturbance (BID), or Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD).
How many times have you heard a friend say that her nose is too wide or her breasts are too small, when they look perfectly proportioned to you?
Acording to AtHealth.com:
Body image may be seen as "disturbed" when one's self-evaluation of appearance is at such a level that it interferes with social and/or occupational functioning, or causes elevated levels of anxiety and depression in the individual.
J. Kevin Thompson, PhD, co-author of Exacting Beauty: Theory, Assessment, and Treatment of Body Image Disturbance, explains that people who suffer from this disorder tend to focus irrationally on one or more of the following body sites: hair, nose, skin, eyes, thighs, abdomen, breast size or shape, buttocks, lips, chin, scars, height, and teeth.
These women will spend their life savings (or beg, borrow or steal) to surgically "correct" the body part that they believe renders them imperfect.
Assuring the BDD sufferer that she looks great won't do any good because she suffers from a mental disorder that limits her ability to visualize herself realistically.
According to Dr. Thompson, "almost everyone has some body feature that they would like to modify." But in the case of the BDD sufferer, they will "go to great lengths to modify the body site (via surgery, exercise, diet, etc.) or cover the feature (via make-up, clothing)."
There is no known cause of BID or BDD, and no known factors that might predispose a person to BID or BDD.
But most sufferers tend to be attractive people who were frequently told how beautiful they were when they were growing up.
This is why it is SO important to instruct your family and friends not to praise your child or focus on your child's attractiveness because children at that age are unable to process or handle that information the way adults can.
Some adults feel uncomfortable when they receive compliments on their beauty. Imagine how a small child must feel.
This world is full of Halle Berry's and Cora's who are psychologically damaged by adults who were captivated by their beauty as children. Don't let this happen to your child.
This has been your Medical Minute.
Any medical information published on this blog is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with your personal physician or a health care provider.