It's called commoditization of cosmetic surgery. Procedures that should involve lengthy appointments with your Plastic Surgeon, discussing everything from your personal health, needs, expectations to downtime, scars, complications, follow-up and much more… NOW are being sold as "work‟ you need and how inexpensive it is when performed in an office.
There are new-style surgery centers popping up all over the country. They employ sales experts that are under so much pressure to "make the sale,‟ that they often do not screen you sufficiently for medical problems, provide little or no follow-up, and use persuasive techniques to convince you to undergo unnecessary procedures or ones that are unlikely to get good results.
It's a form of "fast food courts‟ where the budget-minded consumer can pick from a menu of what they want done and meet with a physician (not necessarily the one who will be operating on them or following them after the procedure).
“It's a recipe for disaster,” says Florida attorney Spencer Aronfeld, who is representing several people with undesired results. Presently, Florida's Attorney General is investigating 60 complaints about one particular business that advertises heavily on TV and in print.
Marketers at these cosmetic surgery centers claim low-risk, dramatic results, and a short recuperation time for procedures. The truth is, you are undergoing surgery that involves numerous risks and should be considered a serious medical procedure. While these centers typically employ board-certified or board eligible plastic surgeons, some don't have privileges to treat patients at hospitals, leaving patients to fend for themselves at emergency rooms.
Joyce, a Tampa resident, said her surgery “ruined my life.” She said the healing process was longer and more difficult than advertised. “I began hiding my face everywhere I went because people stared and some gasped,” Joyce said, citing loose flaps of skin on her neck and lopsided ears.*
Dr. Prendiville, a Fort Myers plastic surgeon, says advertisements of a quick facelift and using words like “revolutionary” aren't based on any studies ever published in surgical journals. It's just really a variant of a facelift that's been done for decades by others.
Dr. Prendiville says he's treated several patients who were unhappy with the results they got at one of the clinic chains in Florida.**
Bottom line, it's your face, your body and your health. Is cheap surgery what you should be looking for?
* **USA TODAY, 9/15/11