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Gen X Embraces Cosmetic Surgery

February 14th, 2012

2011 saw an increase in cosmetic surgery in spite of a sagging economy.   It’s the Gen X’ers leading the pack in finding solutions for sagging problems of a different sort!  According to a study by the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), adults between the ages of 31 and 45 accounted for almost half of all cosmetic procedures in 2011.  This is really nothing new, because while on the surface it looks surprising, this age group regularly accounts for the majority of cosmetic surgery.  This is true in my own practice.  Baby boomers (now ages 51-64) have already chosen to have surgery in their late 30’s and mid 40’s, as Gen X is doing currently.   Baby boomers accounted for just 28% of the procedures last year, perhaps simply relying on less extensive procedures to serve as tune-ups for previous surgery.

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Cosmetic Surgery: Unrealistic Expectations

December 14th, 2011

Who should have cosmetic surgery?   So far, I have mentioned that physical health is a necessity before elective cosmetic surgery should be considered and that I require a current history and physical by an independent primary care physician before any patient is added to my schedule for surgery.

Let’s talk about patient expectations or why somebody is seeking cosmetic surgery to make a physical change.     I evaluate patients on several levels.   Patients with a good mental attitude, including healthy motivation are generally appropriate candidates for cosmetic surgery.

Unrealistic expectations or patients suffering from untreated body dysmorphic conditions do not make good surgical candidates and we can look to Michael Jackson to see why.   They are frequently dissatisfied with the results, regardless of how they turn out and rarely see themselves in a realistic or accurate fashion.

A patient having surgery thinking it will save a personal relationship is never a good idea.   Cosmetic surgery should not be done for someone else.   The ideal motivation is driven by an internal sensitivity about a real physical feature, such as a hump on a nose or facial aging.   Body changes or disfigurement may also be the result of illness, trauma, sun damage, pregnancy, genetics or birth deformity.

So healthy motivation and realistic expectations are the key factors in evaluating patients considering aesthetic surgery.  Years of experience help me sort this out with prospective patients.

I find that healthy patients with appropriate motivation and realistic expectations make the happiest and most satisfied patients in my practice.

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