Let’s get one fact out of the way right at the start. In case you were in any doubt, the U.S. is the world leader in plastic surgery – or, at least, it leads the world by volume. In 2011, 17.2 percent of procedures carried out in the top 25 countries were performed in the US. That amounts to 1 million procedures, with the nearest competitor being Brazil, with an equally impressive 900,000 procedures.
These numbers were reported by the National Business Journal’s Morning Call round up, but what the article, and indeed the original report does not make clear, is how much the results are being skewed by plastic surgery tourism. Due to differences in regulation, and the opportunity to combine a vacation with a surgical procedure, many people choose to have their procedures carried out abroad.
While the effect on the figures in this report may be negligible, the actual impact may be greater. The US is tightly regulated, whereas other countries (including some in Europe) may not be. It’s a slightly worrying trend, as the results may not always meet expectations, especially if there’s a language barrier or if the products being applied are not regulated. There are currently over 140 dermal fillers available in the unregulated U.K. market, compared with 14 in the U.S.
Liposuction is the most popular worldwide procedure, and a former favorite, the nose job, is the fifth most popular globally and ranks number one in China and Japan. While we’re on the topic of trends, The Week has recently rounded up four really odd plastic surgery trends in the US.
Leading the pack is the upper arm lift, or brachioplasty, where excess skin and fat is removed from the upper arm through an incision that runs right from the armpit to the elbow. The Week attached this trend to women wanting to copy Michelle Obama’s ‘toned triceps’ – which makes a change from people wanting the same nose as Kate Middleton.
In second place they put a bizarre practice which actually lengthens limbs by adding a telescoping rod (having first actually broken the bone) that pushes the bone slowly apart as it heals. The process takes six months of virtual immobility, and can cost an arm and a leg.
Chin surgery is up 71%, for some reason making it the third odd trend identified in the article, with toe surgery to fix oddly shaped or fat toes in fourth position.
At least three of these (the arm, chin and toe) make sense to me, with summer around the corner, everyone wants to look their best. Why not start with some light touches on the things that people will see first, and the most of, your chin, eyes, and forehead?
To learn more about cosmetic surgery, contact Dr. Shervin Naderi at 703-481-0002 in Virginia or 301-222-2020 in Maryland for a consultation today.