Considering Plastic Surgery?

01/06/2005 | FootieChick.Com


Footie Chick ImageConsidering Plastic Surgery?

Footie Chick this month would like to talk about Plastic Surgery....more and more women are becoming obsessed with the way they look, and sometimes women focus to much on the outside, and forget that it's the inside that counts the most!

Its the trend these days (especially in the states) just to pop into your local hospital and have a nose job or a boob job.....but sometimes its done for the wrong reason.

Footie Chick, would like to give some advice to those women out there that might be considering Plastic Surgery, as there are so many dodgy consultants and doctors out there these days, so it pays to know the do's and don'ts.

More and more of us are looking to transform our bodies through it. A recent survey showed that 42 per cent of teenagers had considered cosmetic surgery and another found that 7 per cent of women are considering a facelift. Cosmetic surgery is only available privately but cost seems to be no obstacle — as a nation we are spending at least £225 million a year on procedures. Plastic surgery is the name given to skin surgical and reconstruction procedures that have a medical need. Cosmetic surgery, also known as aesthetic plastic surgery, is a type of plastic surgery where there is no medical need and it is not performed on the NHS.

It’s also not something to be entered into lightly. Psychologists say we’re being over-exposed to celebrities with beautiful bodies which we try to emulate in an attempt to fill holes in our lives. What’s more, there are unscrupulous and underqualified practitioners who could do you permanent harm. So you need to make sure the person performing the surgery is of the top standard.


The questions below will help you find the right person. If you would like to obtain listings of NHS plastic surgeons, please click here.These provide details of 237 plastic surgeons who, because they work in the NHS, are certain to have a level of expertise when undertaking private work(NB waiting times in the listings do not apply to private treatments.) Cosmetic surgeons who don’t appear on this database— the UK has about 600 in all — may be competent but you should ask certain questions before you let them use a scalpel on you.

KEY QUESTIONS

What are the surgeon’s qualifications?

Anyone can call themselves a cosmetic surgeon, so you need to be sure that you’ll be seen by someone qualified. First you should check whether they are a doctor by seeing if they are registered with the
General Medical Council (GMC) on 08453 573456; www.gmc-uk.org. You can also check whether the person is a qualified surgeon by looking for the letters MRCS or FRCS after their name. But even these may have no specialist training in plastic surgery. To find those that have, you will have to ask the GMC whether the person is on the plastic surgery section of its register. Anyone appointed as a consultant in the NHS since 1997 must have shown the relevant skills and training to be included on this register. Some older consultants may not be included.

What organisations is the surgeon a member of?

Finding a GMC-registered cosmetic surgeon who is a member of either the British Association of Plastic Surgeons or the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons is also a good idea — their membership requires them to have extensive training. Check whether a surgeon is a member of these organisations by contacting the GMC.

What results can I expect and how long will they last?

Make sure your surgeon is clear about what you should expect and don’t accept broad terms like “significantly better”. The effect of cosmetic surgery is not permanent. The effects of a facelift, for example, can last for up to ten years, depending on the elasticity of your skin, your age and how much your skin is exposed to the sun. Over time, the effects of breast implants will diminish and the breasts will sag. If you have any kind of implant, make sure you check how long they will last and whether they will need to be replaced.

How much will it cost?

Footie Chick ImageBeware of “free” consultations and avoid non-refundable deposits. Make sure that it’s clear what is and isn’t included in the fees quoted. You should always be free to change your mind about surgery, so there should be no financial penalties for cancelling your operation. Dr Foster data on prices charged at private hospitals show that you should expect the following costs, depending on the extent of the surgery. Removal of a small bump on the nose will cost less than a complete reshaping.

Nose Reshaping from £1,000 to £5,075;
Facelift from £650 to £7,860;
Breast Augmentation from £965 to £5,628;
Breast Reduction from £3,000 to £6,000;
Tummy Tuck from £3,000 to £6,000.

What are the possible complications?

Complications can arise from all kinds of surgery. Infection, excessive bleeding, abnormal scarring, poor healing, slow healing, changes in skin sensation, muscle or nerve injury, are all uncommon, but possible. Most of these problems can be corrected with additional surgery. But you should talk over your particular risk of complications with the surgeon before undergoing cosmetic surgery.

How long will it take to recover and what kind of aftercare do I need?

Your surgeon should provide details on how much bruising, swelling, scarring and pain you can expect and what you should be doing to look after yourself. Make sure you are made aware of all the risks and possible side-effects.

Do surgeons ever recommend counselling?

Everyone has different reasons for wanting to change their appearance but having cosmetic surgery might not necessarily be the best option for you. Surgery should be avoided if you have recently experienced life-changing events such as losing a loved one, the break up of a relationship or the arrival of children, and a good surgeon may refer you for counselling rather than operating immediately.

What experience does the surgeon have of this procedure?

Even qualified plastic surgeons might not have extensive training and experience in some procedures. On the whole, surgeons who specialise in the area will have a greater success rate. Ask how many operations your surgeon performs each year and how they measure results.

Useful Contacts

British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons. Provides guidelines for consumers (020-7405 2234; www.baaps.org.uk)

British Association of Plastic Surgeons (020-7831 5161; www.baps.co.uk)

The Consulting Room. A website providing independent information on cosmetic surgery (www.consultingroom.com)