The experience of teasing in elective cosmetic surgery patients

Alun C Jackson, Nicki Andrea Dowling, Roberta Honigman, Kate Francis, Allan M Kalus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The role of teasing as a motivator for patients undertaking elective cosmetic surgery was investigated. Pre-operative data were collected, using a range of standardized tests in addition to open ended questions about their experience of teasing, from 449 patients aged 18 to 70 undergoing elective cosmetic surgery in Australia. Just under half of the sample indicated that they had been teased or bullied about their appearance. Teased patients showed significantly higher levels of anxiety, depression and dysmorphic concern; lower levels of physical attractiveness and appearance satisfaction; and lower levels of satisfaction with discrete aspects of their appearance than nonteased patients. Teasing also contributed to longer periods of considering surgery as an answer to body dissatisfaction concerns, even when controlling for age. Prevention education initiatives on appearance-related teasing should be targeted at school students. This, along with earlier detection of the psychological impacts of weight and appearance-related teasing, fewer people, if offered strategies for coping through counseling, may contemplate surgery as a response to this teasing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129 - 137
Number of pages9
JournalBehavioral Medicine
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Cite this