Breast augmentation is still the most popular procedure for women, with over 1.5 million in 2015.
Cosmetic surgery is a hot-button topic. Ask anyone and they will either tell you it’s the best decision they’ve ever made or swear it off entirely. Whichever side of the fence you find yourself-or maybe the jury’s still out- it’s important to know the facts. Unfortunately, today most news worthy stories regarding cosmetic surgery are either completely ridiculous (and extreme), or centered around celebrities and reality television. And considering that more than 21 million people have a surgical or nonsurgical cosmetic procedure each yeah, we figured it’d be a good idea to shed some light on the facts and debunk the myths:
1. The Myth: Cosmetic surgery is the same as plastic surgery
Believe it or not, the terms “plastic surgery” and “cosmetic surgery” are NOT the same. According to Dr. Shahram Salemy, MD, “The use of these terms interchangeably has led to many misconceptions about these procedures.” He adds, “Cosmetic surgery is performed solely for aesthetics and to improve appearance [and] plastic surgery also includes reconstructive surgery to repair birth defects or damages caused by trauma or illness.”
For example, breast reconstruction after breast cancer is considered plastic surgery, while breast augmentation is cosmetic. Very often, the difference lays in the eyes of the insurance companies. Generally, most policies will cover plastic surgery and not cosmetic surgery.
2. The Myth: It is (too) expensive
Perpetuated by Hollywood’s rich and famous, it’s no wonder us ‘common folk’ believe we could never afford a bosom (among other things) like Kim Kardashian or refined nose like Megan Fox. In the past, this was often true. But today, thanks to a little phenomenon called medical travel, cosmetic surgery is becoming more affordable than ever.
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average cost of breast augmentation in the United States is around $3,678. This price only includes the surgeon’s fee. It does not include the cost of anesthesia, facilities, and materials (stitches, bandages, drapes, etc.). The price will also vary depending on doctor, patient, and region. In the UK this price is between £3,400-£5,000. Nowcompare that to an all-inclusive breast augmentation in the Czech Republic ($2,645/£2,120) and you’re looking at some serious savings without sacrificing quality.
3. The Myth: Liposuction is a quick, easy way to lose weight
“Liposuction” is a medical word for fat removal, but it’s not a treatment for weight loss or obesity.
We’d all love to lipo-away that extra weight we put on during the winter. Unfortunately, liposuction is not the answer- though it can help. Liposuction is NOT the same as bariatric surgery. Therefore it is NOT a weight-loss surgery. Liposuction removes stubborn, unwanted fat from trouble spot on the body (i.e. inner thighs, tummy, back, chin). Before undergoing the procedure, most surgeons require that you be as close to your ‘goal’ or ‘natural’ weight as possible. While lipo helps to slim and contour the body, the results will only last as long as your commitment to a healthy lifestyle.
4. The Myth: Cosmetic surgery means “going under the knife”
Topping the charts with 4.6 million procedures per year, Botulinum Toxin (BOTOX®) is the most popular cosmetic procedure for both men and women worldwide. Instead of “going under the knife”, more and more patients are opting to go under the laser or needle. Thanks to new innovative technologies, even traditionally invasive procedures like liposuction have new alternatives, like Coolsculpting®. In 2017, experts predict that non-invasive procedures, like Kybella (an injectable which eliminates double-chins),will continue to grow in popularity. Benefits typically include lower prices, little to no recovery time and only the use of local anesthetics; usually in the form of creams or injectables. Other popular non-invasive cosmetic procedures include: Hyaluronic Acid, Hair Removal, Photo Rejuvenation and Nonsurgical Fat Reduction.
5. The Myth: Cosmetic surgery is only for women
By far, women still dominate the cosmetic surgery market. However, in 2015, cosmetic surgeons saw a significant rise in men looking to boost their confidence and improve their image. 3 million to be exact. Recent statistics from the American Plastic Surgery Surgeons reveal that the most popular surgical procedures for men are: Eyelid Surgery, Liposuction, Gynecomastia (male breast reduction), Rhinoplasty and Fat Grafting.
6. The Myth: The Kardashians have never had cosmetic surgery
2016 was the year of many influential, memorable moments. Most noteworthy include Great Britain’s exist from the EU, Donald Trump’s win as president of the United States, and Kim Kardashian’s social media silence following a robbery in Paris. But in addition to political uproar and selfies, it was also a record-setting year for cosmetic surgeries. In fact, the ISAPS (International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery) are predicting numbers north of 1.6 million surgical and non-surgical procedures worldwide.
While old staples, like breast augmentation, liposuction and botox, continue to top the charts, it seems like new trends, such as the Brazilian Butt Lift and dermal fillers, have also been making a name for themselves. As the cosmetic surgery field continues improving and evolving, there’s no question that next year will offer even more, unique procedures. To feed your curiosity (and ours), we’ve rounded up 3 of the most interesting, new cosmetic surgery trends for 2017.
Top 3 Trends For 2017
Kybella (Double Chin)Kybella first burst onto the beauty scene several years ago. It quickly gained popularity among men and woman who wished to finally say goodbye to their double chin-for good! If the double chin is Superman, than Kybella is his Kyrptonite. The procedure involves a highly
potent substance which is injected into the neck and jawline to target and eliminate stubborn fat below the chin. While in the past surgical liposuction was a solution, Kybella offers a noninvasive solution. According to recent statistics released by the ASAP (American Society of Plastic Surgeons), Kybella treatments increased by an outstanding 78% in 2016. From the looks of it, Kybella is here to stay.
Cosmetic Eye Color Surgery Ever wish you had different colored eyes? Well now it’s possible to
change them- permanently. For many years, the only solution to change eye color were color contacts. Science is now able to give patients those baby blues they always wanted. How does it work? The surgeons places an intraocular in the anterior chamber of the eye to change the appearance of
the iris. Originally created and performed for medical reasons, such asocular albinism (no pigment) and heterochromia (two different colored eyes), ocular implants are becoming increasing popular for
Fat Grafting (Total Body) If you’re looking for fuller breasts, buttocks, face, or any other sections of the body, look no further. The latest cosmetic craze to hit the market is fat transfers. During the procedure, the surgeon will first examine a patients body for sections of optimum fat cells to harvest. After extracting the cells using tumescent liposuction, the fat cells are purified. Next, the surgeon transplants cells back into the specific problem areas. Next the fat is shaped perfectly into the patients desired contours. One of the greatest things about fat grafting is it’s level of safety. The procedure only involves the relocation of your own fat cells to different areas of your body. This means that absolutely no “foreign objects” are introduced. It is becoming increasingly popular among women for breast and buttock augmentation.
What if you came into work on Monday and noticed your boss looking more, youthful? Those crows feet had disappeared, her frown lines were less noticeable, and overall, her skin was looking significantly tighter and fresher. Would you chalk it up to a well-rested weekend? Or spend the rest of the morning around the water cooler discussing if Mrs. Jones had a little extra help?
In 2015, more than 21 million surgical and nonsurgical cosmetic procedures were performed worldwide. According to the ISAPS (International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery), this is an increase of over 1 million cosmetic procedures from 2014. Topping the charts with 4.6 million procedures, Botulinum Toxin (BOTOX®)continues to be the most popular cosmetic procedure for both men and women. Other popular anti-aging injectables, such as Hyaluronic Acid, have also increased 6.5% from 2014 to 2015.
So did Mrs. Jones go under the needle? Probably. And should we care? It depends who you talk to.
Which Cosmetic Procedures Are Considered Normal?
In general, eyebrows aren’t exactly raising when new cosmetic surgery statistics are released. Thanks to the media, and a bombardment of beauty advertising, girls as young as 13-years-old have expressed interest in getting breast implants. In fact, breast augmentation remains the most popular surgical procedure for women, with nearly 1.5 million performed each year.
Nearly 1.5 million were performed worldwide in 2015
ASPS (American Society of Plastic Surgeons) President, David H. Song, comments, “While more traditional facial procedures and breast augmentations are still among the most popular, we’re seeing much more diversity in the areas of the body patients are choosing to address.”
Other popular surgeries include: Liposuction (1,181,074), Eyelid surgery (988,620), Abdominoplasty (703,361), and Rhinoplasty (534,523).
And though woman contribute to 85% of procedures performed worldwide, men are not shying away from a little nip and tuck. Popular surgeries include: Eyelid surgery (276,082), Liposuction (213,514), Gynecomastia (212,328), and Rhinoplasty (195,764).
Jenny, 42, London adds to the debate,”I recently had botox and I love it. It’s perfectly acceptable for women, and men, to spend loads of money on gym memberships, organic foods, designer clothes and yoga retreats in the name of self improvement. So what’s the big deal about a cosmetic procedure to improve your appearance? Of course if you have botox, or any cosmetic procedure, your opening the door to criticism. But in general, if it looks natural, I really don’t think people care- or notice.”
“It’s perfectly acceptable for women, and men, to spend loads of money on gym memberships, organic foods, designer clothes and yoga retreats in the name of self improvement, so what’s the big deal about cosmetic procedure to improve your appearance?”
In a recent interview with Cosmopolitan, American reality TV star, Khloe Kardashian, 32, adds, “I think plastic surgery should be viewed almost like makeup, because we’re all putting on a f*cking mask basically every day anyway, when you dye your hair, you’re changing who you are, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. I think people should get plastic surgery or fillers or lasers or whatever if they want it — that should be your own personal decision.”
When Does Cosmetic Surgery Become Extreme?
If botox and breast augmentation are “normal”, at least according to statistics, then which procedures are considered too extreme? Where is the line?
Before and After, Hi Def Liposculpture (six pack creation).
In a recent survey, Americans considered buttock implants, pectoral implants and jawline reduction the most extreme cosmetic procedures. Other bizarre, but popular procedures include: dimple creation surgery, Hi Def Liposculpture (six pack creation), The Bra Line Back Lift, penis enlargement/lengthening and labiaplasty.
Adam, 27, Chicago weighs in, “Personally I think it’s all too extreme. I have three sisters, so I understand the pressure they feel to look a certain way. Even as a young man, I feel it too. But I think it’s a slippery slope. Sure, maybe a little botox isn’t something to get worked up over. But it can easily be the gateway to other, more extreme procedures. Like butt implants for example. It will never be enough”
New stats from the ASPS also revealed that 2015 was another “year of the rear”, as procedures focusing on the bottom dominated surgical growth. In 2015, buttock implants were the fastest growing type of cosmetic surgery in the United States. Overall, numbers showed that on an average day, one buttock procedure was performed every 30 minutes.
“Sure, maybe a little botox isn’t something to get worked up over. But it can easily be the gateway to other, more extreme procedures in the future. It’s ridiculous”
“What I don’t understand are the people who think ‘bigger is better’. Bigger lips, bigger breasts, bigger behinds. Too me that is extreme,” adds Anne Burns, 36, a personal trainer in New York City. “Everyday in my gym I see all body types, and work with people to improve their self-confidence. For some women, breast augmentation or rhinoplasty can dramatically improve their self-esteem. However, for others you can tell that they just want to achieve some unrealistic standard. For example, young college girls getting DD breast implants and lip injections. It begins to look extremely unnatural.”
In 2015, buttock implants were the fastest growing type of cosmetic surgery in the United States.
The number of surgical and nonsurgical procedures are projected to increase in 2017. It is safe to say that the lines between what is “normal” and “extreme” will become more defined or blur even further.
“Personally, I think what is normal and extreme is obvious. When you see a woman with disproportionately large breasts, lip injections, and a face frozen in time, it’s quite shocking,” says Kim, 34, Birmingham. “In my opinion, if the procedure looks natural and makes you happy, then who cares. But when your spending thousands to look like a plastic barbie doll, then it raises some concern. In that case, I’d say it’s extreme.”
In a recent poll, men were asked how they felt about their wife getting a ‘Mommy Makeover’ after having children. Out of nearly 300 men, about 52% agreed that if it was something she needed to feel confident in her body again- then yes, go for it! It may also be the reason behind how so many Hollywood starlets seem to snap right back to their pre-baby bodies.
Kim Kardashian 2016 post-baby body is nearly unrecognizable compared to 2015 when she was pregnant with her second child. Many speculate that she had a Mommy Makeover to help her transformation.
What exactly does a Mommy Makeover entail?
A little bit of everything. A Mommy Makeover is not cosmetic surgery procedures in and of itself. On the contrary, it consists of a series of smaller procedures which the surgeon performs at the same time. Case in point, meet Angelia.
Angelia (Liverpool, UK) is a mother of 3 young boys, and at the age of 38 decided that she was not happy with her body.
“Motherhood is the most beautiful, and most challenging thing I’ve ever done in my life. I’m proud of what my body has endured over the past 7 years but, I’m still human. I still have insecurities. When my girlfriends, who are also mums, and I get together for a chat, we always talk about how fantastic our bodies were before children. Things sag and giggle now were they didn’t use to, and even with diet and exercise, non of us have completely fit back into or skinny jeans. It’s totally normal, but I don’t want to spend the next 15 years raising my boys and worrying about my muffin top. That’s why next month I will be having a ‘mummy makeover’. It will include a breast lift, tummy tuck and liposuction of my buttocks and thighs.”
“Motherhood is the most beautiful, and most challenging thing I’ve ever done in my life. I’m proud of what my body has endured over the past 7 years but, I’m still human. I still have insecurities.”
After speaking we Angelia we asked her husband, Paul, 42, what how he felt about his wife’s decision to have cosmetic surgery.
“It’s her body, and her decision. Of course I told her what all good husbands do, ‘hun you’re perfect the way you are’. And I mean that. But I could tell she was insecure about her body after having the boys. She started opting for clothing that’s sole purpose was to cover her up. That’s not the confident, bold, sexy Angelia I met 10 years ago. So if this makes her feel sexy, and beautiful again in her own skin, then I support her.”
Paul is not alone. In fact, another 12% of men polled actually said they would encourage their wives to have a few tips and tucks after pregnancy. Andy (Tampa, Florida), 36, even surprised his wife with a Mommy Makeover for their 5th wedding anniversary.
“[My wife] Kate complained for years after our daughter was born that she hated her breasts. I hardly noticed a difference, but after breast feeding and losing the baby weight, she said her breasts had actually shrunk. Like I said, from looking at Kate it was hardly noticeable, but what mattered was that she noticed. It bothered her to the point that she stopped wearing bikini tops, or changing in front of me. So as a gift for our 5th wedding anniversary I got her breast augmentation. I actually offered it, and she was over the moon about, thinking we couldn’t afford it. Kate is now a full C, slightly larger than her pre-pregnancy breasts, and she loves them. I do too.”
Which Procedures Should I Have Done?
Mommy Makeover tummy tuck, before and after.
A standard Mommy Makeover targets the following 3 areas:
Breasts–According to the American Society of Plastic Surgery, one of the most common issues after childbirth is a change in the size or shape of breasts. To treat this issue, woman can choose from several different types of procedures. While breast implants are the most well-known, many mommy’s opt for a breast lift or breast augmentation instead. This helps change or enhance the shape of the breast after childbirth.
Tummy-After 9 months of pregnancy, a the shape of a woman’s stomach may change a lot. Although natural weight loss can occur with diet and exercise, many women have problems with sagging, excess skin left over. In this case, a tummy tuck is often suggested, rather than liposuction, restoring a more natural, thinner appearance.
Lower Body– Similar to excess skin, women are often left with stubborn fat deposits after childbirth. Even intense diet and exercise may not always solve these changes. For these patients, Liposuction is one way to target and remove unwanted fat from the stomach, thighs or buttocks. Other women may choose to have a lower body lift, which tightens sagging skin around the thighs, hips or buttocks.
Conception is the miracle of life. For centuries, pregnant bodies have been marveled at, celebrated, and even worshipped. Nowadays, baby-bumps still never cease to amazes us. Just ask any expecting mother if they had a dollar for every person who asked to touch their bellies.
However, women today (especially young mothers) face more body and beauty standards than ever before. The constant pressure to have the “perfect body”, both pre- and post- pregnancy, is even enough for some women to forego pregnancy altogether.
In an interview with several soon-to-be mommies, we asked: what worries them most about their postpartum figures?
The average woman gains approximately 12.5kg (27.6lb) during her pregnancy.
New Mommy Worries
“I’m worried about stretch-marks. I appreciate all of the women who says, ‘stretch marks are battle wounds’. Confidence is important, but personally I don’t look forward to them.” (Michelle, 26, UK)
“Saggy boobs, for sure. I’ve always had large breasts, and since getting pregnant, they’ve gotten even bigger. At first I loved it-so did my husband-but now I just worry about the shape and size they’ll return to after the birth.” (Mary-Kate, 28, UK)
“I’m actually about to have my second child, can I tell you, I still worry about my post-baby body. I’m naturally quite thin, workout several times a week and maintain a sensible diet, but after my first child, my physique totally change. I noticed more fat migrating to my tummy and thighs. Now I have a little pouch that I just can’t get rid of. No matter how much I exercise or how healthy I eat.” (Julia, 27, U.S.)
Would You Have Cosmetic Surgery?
In a recent poll, young mothers were asked if they would ever undergo any kind of cosmetic surgery (invasive or non-invasive) to help get back to their pre-baby bodies. 46% agree that they would be open to some minimally invasive or non invasive cosmetic surgery if it meant improving their self confidence and increasing their overall happiness. 12% admit that they’ve already had some work done, or are interested in a more invasive procedure.
When we asked our mommy-to-be’s, they had the following to say:
Michelle, 26, UK, opens up about her post-baby body fears.
“Sure, why not? I am proud of my body. Giving birth is beautiful. But I want to feel sexy too! I am young and I don’t want to spend the next 50+ years hiding my tummy.” – Julia
“I’ve thought about it, but I’m not sure. I think if it was something minimally invasive or noninvasive, I’d totally be open to it. Maybe a laser treatment for my stretch mark. I wish we didn’t have to have this discussion, but it’s a real fear for many young mothers. We should support one another and do what’s best for us and our bodies.” -Michelle
Quality, affordable healthcare is on the forefront of minds around the world. Out-of-pocket medical costs for critical and elective procedures continue to skyrocket, and nations offering universal care are struggling to keep up with the demand. As a result, millions of patients are crossing borders each year in order to access better healthcare options, save money, and cut down on increasingly long wait times. According to Patients Beyond Borders, the worldwide medical tourism market is estimated to be growing at a rate of 15-25%.
In a recent interview with Martin Cvetler and Petr Vankat, co-founders of Salutara, they discuss how Salutara.com is helping patients navigate the new world of medical travel, and how they plan to revolutionize the medical tourism industry.
Q: Hi Petr and Martin! Tell us a little bit about Salutara. Where did the inspiration to start an online medical travel platform come from?
Petr:Some people believe that traveling is the best way to enrich your life, and I completely agree. Several years ago I was visiting a friend in Switzerland, and came across a local travel agent who was providing citizens of the beautiful Swiss town, Thun, a chance to take advantage of high quality yet significantly lower priced Hungarian dentistry. It stroke me as a brilliant idea! I started imagining how great it would be to give people the means to find the perfect treatment, clinic and doctor, anywhere in the world.
A friendly, coherent online platform seemed like the easiest way to provide simple communication and allow patients to book their procedures directly. My mother is also an eye surgeon, so and I grew up around doctors. It only made sense.
Martin: There were other online platforms out there at the time we started building Salutara.com, but none that provided users with full, end-to-end service. Our idea wasn’t to be the same, and it still isn’t. We’ve created Salutara.com to be something like the Booking.com of medical treatments, although finding a clinic and booking a medical treatment is certainly not the same as booking a hotel room. When you’re working with patients from all over the world, with real medical concerns, building trust is the main concern.
Co-Founder, Petr Vankat and Salutara dental client, Ingrid, USA, sightseeing in Prague before her procedure.
Q: What are some of the main advantages of traveling abroad for medical treatments?
Martin: There are plenty of advantages of traveling abroad for a medical treatment. Shorter wait times, better quality, and lower prices to name a few. Patients generally want top quality for a reasonable and affordable price. Today, prices can vary 2-3 fold depending on the country. Recently, a client traveled from the USA for 5 days of extensive dental treatment. In total, she spent 8,800 USD. Back home in the USA, the same procedure would easily cost 3 times more.
Price aside, she was also extremely happy with the quality of the clinic in the Czech Republic. Based on her experience, she felt that it was better equipped than some US clinics.
Q: What is the most frequent question (or concern) patients have before traveling abroad for a medical procedure?
Petr: Price, quality and language spoken- in this order. As Martin mentioned, most people ask for good quality for an affordable price, however, some prefer quality regardless of price. And as far as languages, we direct our customers to clinics and doctors equipped with particular language skills. In the near future we’ll be launching a concierge service including interpretation on site.
Martin: We also provide every client with multiple price quotes from different clinics so they can compare and get a good feel for the price level. Our goal is to provide clients with standardized quotes that are easy to understand and compare. Simplicity is key. Our clients have busy lives and we value their time.
Q: Let’s talk about Salutara.com. What features and capabilities does your full-service, online platform provide?
Martin:The ultimate solution is a user friendly platform that connects clients with clinics for unlimited online consultations, price quotes, date booking, trip planning (when going abroad), including the transportation and accommodation. At the same time, every client has a dedicated Salutara coordinator that helps with questions before and during the trip, and helps clients make the right, and best decision for them.
Petr: Adding to what Martin said, it is also a matter of common sense. We want to solve the annoying problems people face when doing it themselves? For instance, having to approach clinics with different price lists, exchanging lengthy, exhausting e-mail back and forth (often hard to keep track of), discussing different availabilities, language skills, and of course, finding credible patient reviews. This is what we are currently solving and working on.
Q: How do you support the patients before, during and after their medical travel?
Martin: As I said before, we do and provide everything that helps to make the right decision about the clinic. Once the date of a treatment is reserved, we help each client organize everything else, including the airport transfers, accommodation and anything else they might need at the destination. Once they arrive, we make sure they are at all of their appointments on time, arrange any necessary transportation, and accompany them to the clinic if they wish.
Petr: In addition, as well as you might appreciate to be asked how everything was before leaving a restaurant, we do the same before our clients leave the country of treatment and when they arrive home. Feedback is crucial for further improvement and it also gives Salutara’s customers a chance to share a few happy “after” pictures with us, which so far they’ve loved doing.
Q: What responsibilities do you have as one of the world’s leading medical travel platforms?
Petr:It’s a good question. We are responsible for providing a variety of transparent options for customers to choose from. All data needs to be accurate and quick response times are critical for urgent treatments . This is especially true for IVF, when every seconds counts.
Martin:As Petr said, accurate and extensive information is 100% necessary, and we do not believe in cutting corners. Speedy and relevant responses are also important, as well as honesty, trust and care.
Online medical travel platform, Salutara, co-founders, Martin (right) and Petr (left)
Q: How do you ensure the safest and most comfortable experience for your patients?
Petr:Clients have the option to ask for our Salutara welcome package. Thisincludes having a personal assistant that picks them up at the airport, takes them to their hotel, and introduces them at clinic. It’s also totally natural to feel stressed before a surgery in a strange country. We understand that. Therefore, they appreciate having someone there, on the spot, ready to help provide comfort, courage and resolve any potential hick ups.
*Bringing patients a complimentary McFlurry or pumpkin spiced latte when there’s a sudden craving is just a bonus (smile).
Q: Your partnerships with clinics and physicians are a key factor in the patient’s success. How do you decide which partners meet your standards in order to provide highest level of service?
Petr: All of the clinics we work with are accredited, certified and members of various worldwide association.We do extensive research on each clinic beforehand recommending them to client. It’s also important to keep in mind that themedical field is very well connected, and the clinics we work with often recommend one another. For example, a dental clinic may recommend a plastic surgery clinic for cooperation. It is then our job to verify any personal bias- positive or negative. Also, you can tell a lot about a clinic from its management, staff and by looking into previous customers’ reviews. We take all customer feedback into consideration.
Q: Where do you see Salutara in the next few years? Which *new* treatments will you be offering?
Petr: Our goal to continually improve and provide more of what our clients want and need. In regards to treatments, there is a high demand on the market for laser eye surgeries – those are going to be next. Also dermatological procedures and so called mummy makeovers are to be added and later even more sophisticated treatments like knee or hip replacements and even proton cancer therapy.
Geographically, Salutara will expand its clinic offers to other countries such as Hungary, Malaysia, South Korea, Thailand or Costa Rica and Mexico.
Q: Medical tourism is a booming industry, and shows no sign of slowing down. How does Salutara set itself apart from other medical travel agencies?
Martin:Well, in a way Salutara already has. A majority of agencies offer a limited scope of services focusing on a specific local market. For example, only bringing German customers to Hungary for dental treatments only. Salutara does not intend to be just ‘another agency’, per say, but the website/App which comes to mind every time you need a medical treatment. Salutara is transparent, easy to use, and an end-to-end service. Our goal is to facilitate direct communication with clinics/doctors, personal assistance and create a stress free process.
Each year, over 40 million cosmetic surgeries are performed around the world. Of these 40 million, 1.4 million are breast augmentations; the most popular cosmetic surgery among women. Most elective cosmetic surgery is not covered by health insurance, and as the price of health care skyrockets, more patients are choosing to have their medical treatments and surgeries abroad- over 11 million to be exact.
Today you will meet Candida, a Brazilian native and mother of a young daughter, as she talks about her decision to get breast augmentation abroad. Like other medical travelers, Candida’s story begins with a challenge and ends with a solution that provides the best, quickest and most affordable results.
Q: What factors influenced your decision to get breast augmentation?
Well, I’ve always had small breast- which I actually liked. I never thought about getting breast augmentation until after having my first child and starting to breastfeed. It’s amazing what a woman’s body experiences after childbirth, and it is not uncommon for the breasts to change size and shape after breastfeeding. Some get larger, some return to their pre-pregnancy size, but for me, mine got even smaller.
Breastfeeding for several years, along with post-baby dieting and exercise had a significant influence on their size. For the first time in my life I wanted larger breasts- similar to the size before having children. I had never had cosmetic surgery before, so it was not a decision to take lightly. If I was going to do this, I wanted the best surgeons and the highest quality. I am also a full-time chef, so between being a mother and my busy work schedule, I needed a solution that was simple.
Q: What made you choose to go abroad for your breast augmentation?
Originally I was going to go to Brazil, my home country, for the procedure. However, I live and work in Vienna, so traveling that far was going to be time consuming and pricey. That’s when a friend of mine introduced me to the full-service, online medical platform, Salutara. At the time I was aware of people traveling abroad for cosmetic surgery, but I never knew their were end-to-end services to assist you in the process. Salutara was an excellent resource to compare cosmetic surgery clinics based on price, accreditation, patient reviews and quality. They made the decision-making process quick, and simple, and saved me valuable time by alleviating the headache of doing research on my own.
Candida Before Breast Augmentation, Brandeis Clinic
Candida After Breast Augmentation, Brandeis Clinic
Q: Why did you choose to have your breast augmentation in Prague?
I had previously lived in Prague for 3 years, so I already knew it’s excellent reputation for cosmetic surgery. It is also a four and a half hour train ride from Vienna, so logistically it made sense. Salutara is partners with the Brandeis Clinic in Prague, and immediately put me in direct contact with my surgeon and the clinic staff. No surgery is without risk, and fears are normal, especially when you’re going into the surgery voluntarily. Speaking to my surgeon allowed me to have all of my questions and concerns addressed before the trip. We also discussed in length the type of implant I would get- anatomical (natural) or round- and if they would be subpectoral (under the muscle) or prepectoral (over the muscle). We agreed on Motiva, a round implant under the muscle.
Q:Was cost the most important factor?
I don’t think you can put a price on your health. If a safe surgery and better results meant spending more money, then I would do it. Sure, savings are attractive, especially when they can exceed 80%, but quality always takes precedence. Fortunately the Brandeis Clinic in Prague offers top-notch quality and state-of-the-art technology, so I did not have to sacrifice anything. The quality offered in Prague exceeded that in Vienna, so my decision to travel was easy. The significant difference in price was just icing on the cake.
Q: What were your first thoughts upon arriving at your clinic in Prague?
Throughout the entire process, my communication with Salutara and my clinic was quick and efficient. I was provided with all of the information about the surgery and exams before leaving Vienna. When I arrived in Prague, a member of Salutara was there to greet me and take me to my hotel, despite being very late in the evening. The next morning I went to the Brandeis Clinic where I met my surgeon, anesthetist, and the staff. As for the atmosphere, it was a beautiful building with modern installations, and located in the center of Prague. From my window I had lovely views that overlooked the cobblestone streets and century-old architecture.
Q: How prepared did you feel before the surgery?
I felt very confident and assured. The clinic was fully equipped, and my surgeon and anesthetist walked me through every detail. I was in good hands. There were absolutely no problems with communication either- which I know is a concern for some medical travelers. They offered english or german and the surgeons and nurses were really nice about providing me details about the whole surgery, care and after care. Breast augmentation requires full-anesthesia and the procedure took a little under two hours. Before I knew it I was waking up in recovery.
Brandeis Clinic is located in the historical center of the Czech Republic’s capital city, Prague
Q: It has been several weeks since your surgery, how do you feel about the results?
Well, I am still healing and the implants are settling. Surgery recovery is about 2 weeks and full recovery can take up to two months. But, so far I am extremely happy. My breasts look excellent and I am thrilled with the results. I keep asking myself why I didn’t get the surgery done sooner- but better late than never! My surgeon did beautiful work and I highly recommend Prague and the Brandeis Clinic to anyone else considering cosmetic surgery or medical travel. In fact, I am so pleased I have already recommended my surgeon to several of my friends who are now interested in breast augmentation themselves.
Q: What advice would you give to other medical travelers, or those considering it for the first time?
I highly recommend you don’t go it alone. Using a full-service medical platform like Salutara, saves you time, stress and a lot of headaches. And as I mentioned before, savings are great, but they should be a bonus to exceptional quality.
Second, ask questions! As many as you can think of. This is when being in direct contact with your surgeon is crucial, another benefit of using a medical platform. Cosmetic surgery is not something to take lightly, and important health questions (specific to you) need professional answers. Finally, if your schedule and allows it, take advantage of the city you’re traveling to. For instance, in Prague I recommend you take at least one day before your surgery to be a tourist and enjoy the most beautiful city in Europe. I also recommend spending a full 2-3 days (depending on your surgery) post-surgery to recover. This will make the trip home more comfortable.
The numbers are in- and they might surprise you. Just how many people got cosmetic surgery in 2015?
On July 26, 2016, the ISAPS (International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery) released the results from its annual global survey. Compiling data from a questionnaire sent to approximately 35,000 plastic surgeons worldwide, more than 21 million surgical and nonsurgical cosmetic procedures were performed in 2015. This is an increase of over 1 million cosmetic procedures from 2014. According to a press release from ISAPS, they reported that Botulinum Toxin (BOTOX®), continues to top the chart as the most popular cosmetic procedure for both men and women. A total of over 4.6 million procedures were performed worldwide. Another popular injectable, Hyaluronic Acid, increased 6.5% from 2014 to 2015. Once again, breast augmentation continues to be the most common surgical procedure among women, increasing 10.4% from 2014. Eyelid surgery remains the most prevalent for men.
Top 5 Surgical Procedures: Women
In 2015, women had more than 18 million surgical and nonsurgical procedures. This is an astounding 85.6% of the total procedures worldwide. The top five surgical procedures were:
Breast augmentation (1,476,498)
Eyelid surgery (988,620)
Top 5 Surgical Procedures: Men
Contributing to 14.4% of the total, men had more than 3 million surgical and nonsurgical procedures in 2015. The top five surgical procedures performed on men in 2015 were:
Eyelid surgery (276,082)
Fat grafting (92,311)
Top 4 Surgical Procedures: Total
Of the more than 21 million procedures performed in 2015, 9.6 million were surgical. The most popular (total) procedures were:
Breast Augmentation (up 10% vs. 2014)
Liposuction (up 2% vs. 2014)
Eyelid Surgery (down 11% vs. 2014)
Abdominoplasty (up 11% vs. 2014)
Top 5 Nonsurgical Procedures: Total
The remaining 12.1 million procedures in 2015 were nonsurgical procedures. Worldwide, the United States took the lead with 2.6 million procedures. The most popular procedures were:
Botulinum Toxin (down 4% vs. 2014)
Hyaluronic Acid (up 7% vs. 2014)
Hair Removal (down 14% vs. 2014)
Photo Rejuvenation (new to 2015 survey)
Nonsurgical Fat Reduction (new to 2015 survey)
Cosmetic Surgery By Country
According to ISAPS, the country with the highest number of procedures was the United States, setting the bar high at 1.4 million surgical and 2.6 million non-surgical procedures in 2015. The United States also has the largest number of active plastic surgeons with 6,500 followed by Brazil (5,500) and China (2,800). Coming in at a close second to the U.S. was Brazil, with a reported 1.2 million surgical and 1.1 million non-surgical procedures. Rounding out the list for the most procedures was South Korea, India, Mexico, Germany, Colombia, France, and Italy.
According to the ASPS (American Society of Plastic Surgeons), this is a 2% increase from 2014. In addition to continued growth over the last year, statistics indicate a shift in the types of procedures patients have chosen since the start of the new millennium. In a statement from ASPS President, David H. Song, he said,
“While more traditional facial procedures and breast augmentations are still among the most popular, we’re seeing much more diversity in the areas of the body patients are choosing to address…Patients have more options than ever, and working closely with their surgeon, they’re able to focus on specific target areas of the body to achieve the look they desire.”
New stats from the ASPS also revealed that 2015 was another “year of the rear”, as procedures focusing on the bottom dominated surgical growth. In 2015, buttock implants were the fastest growing type of cosmetic surgery in the United States. Overall, numbers showed that on an average day, one buttock procedure was performed every 30 minutes.
In 2016, a record 18.5 million women underwent some kind of cosmetic surgery worldwide.
From invasive surgeries, such as breast augmentation and liposuction, to more minor, noninvasive treatments, such as Botox and hair removal, the trend of self-improvement is steadily on the rise.
In the 21st century, cosmetic surgery is as a run-of-the-mill as a trip to the dentist. However, discussing the “work you’ve had done”, can still feel rather taboo. Women, especially, make a point to keep their nips and tucks under wraps, even going as far as to hide it from their spouses and children. In an interview with The Telegraph, plastic surgeon, Dr. Bryan Mendelson, commented that nearly 99% of his patients don’t tell their better halves, and that most women decide to go under the knife without consulting their nearest and dearest.
But why? Are women ashamed to of their cosmetic surgery? Are they worried about the reaction from others? Is our media’s critical portrayal of cosmetic surgery to blame? To shed some light on this dilemma, it is important to first understand the motivation behind cosmetic surgery.
Dr. Mendelson elaborated,
“People have surgery not to impress others, they do it to impress themselves. For many people, it’s about getting their confidence back…People aren’t doing surgery to win someone’s hand in marriage, they’re doing it for their inner self. There comes a time, in your 40s and 50s, when someone tells you ‘you’re looking tired’. You were feeling OK until someone said that. But now when you look in the mirror you no longer see your vibrant self.”
If this is true then why are women afraid their partners and family won’t be supportive?
He continued, “Patients’ husbands tend to freak out about surgery, saying ‘I love her the way she is, why would she risk doing that? “The fact is it’s about self-esteem. They’re doing it for themselves.”
What influence does the media have on the publics perception of cosmetic surgery?
Dr. Mendelson insisted that, “The way the media portrays cosmetic surgerysensationalizes people who look ridiculous after an operation…The vast majority of people who undergo surgery have something subtle done. They don’t want to tell people as they don’t want to be treated differently. It’s like make-up, they don’t want people to notice what they’ve had done. They’re doing it purely for themselves and their own self-esteem.”
But should women (and men) assume the response from their counterparts will be negative? New research actually reveals the opposite.
In a recent poll from Daily News and Analysis, they asked men if women who get cosmetic surgery put them off. What the results revealed was that more and more men are comfortable with the idea of women enhancing their looks- nearly 50%. The other half preferred a more natural look, but agreed that if a women would like to enhance her looks to feel more beautiful and confident, then why not.
In fact, in 2015 over 3.1 million men worldwide underwent some kind cosmetic surgery or anti-aging procedure as well. The most popular treatments? Eyelid surgery and Liposuction.
The truth of the matter is, cosmetic surgery is quite common, and isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. For men, and women alike, it is important to talk openly with your partner about their motivation and desire for cosmetic surgery. In an interview with ELLE UK, pop-singer Kylie Minogue summed up the new attitude toward cosmetic surgery best,
“I’m not against surgery, I haven’t gone down that route yet and I don’t know whether I will but I’m not against it. The only time it isn’t amazing is when it’s not well done or someone takes it too far. But I look at someone like Jane Fonda. I’m a super-fan of hers. She doesn’t apologize [about her surgery] and she shouldn’t have to. We put makeup on every day, we tint, pluck, wax, we do anything to make ourselves look as good as we can and I think it’s pointless being hypocritical about something that if it’s done well can be really good.”
Thinking about liposuction? So are nearly 1.4 million other people each year. Liposuction is the 2nd most popular cosmetic surgery worldwide and has risen to fame for helping patients remove unsightly fat, often stubborn to exercise and diet, and reshape the natural contours of the body. Popular areas include the inner and outer thighs, stomach, hips, back, neckline and upper arms.
Since its debut in 1974, the cosmetic procedure has evolved above and beyond the wildest dreams of its earliest surgeons. Just like people, today liposuction comes in all shapes and sizes, giving patients more choices than ever when it comes to selecting the method that is right for them. And while more choices are better than none, it canbe overwhelming when undergoing such a procedure. So to help simplify, we’ve put together a breakdown of the 4 Most Popular Liposuction Methods.
1. Tumescent Liposuction
An innovative extension of traditional liposuction, tumescent is the most common and popular method worldwide, and is used in virtually every form of liposuction today. It is an invasive procedure and typically performed under local or general anesthesia, depending on the size of the target area. The procedure itself takes between 1.5-2 hours and the tumescent technique uses several litres of a saline “wetting” solution, which is injected below the skin and into the fat. This decreases blood loss, facilitates anesthesia and creates space between the muscle and fatty tissue, allowing the cannula to move more freely. Fat cells are then permanently removed (suctioned out) through small incisions with the use of a microcannula attached to a high-power vacuum.
A microcannula attached to a high-power vacuum suctions fat from under the skins surface.
Following surgery, patients are hospitalized for 1 night and fitted with elastic, compression undergarments which are worn for up to 8 weeks. It is recommended that patients do not perform any strenuous activity for at least 2 months. Final results can be seen within 3-4 months after surgery. Swelling and bruising are quite common during the recovery period.
Vaserlipo® is a semi-invasive method, performed under general anesthesia. An average procedure lasts about 1-2 hours. Similar to tumescent liposuction, the target fat is injected with a with a saline “wetting” solution. The next step utilizes ultrasound technology, and ultrasound waves are emitted externally to the fat cells. The waves liquify the fat cells and after the target areas have been treated, are extracted from the body.
Vaserlipo® is popular among patients and surgeons because it minimizes the internal impact on surrounding tissues and nerves, and any excess swelling, bleeding or discomfort. Because the ultrasonic extraction method only affects the fat cells, recovery is quick and virtually painless. Patients are generally in and out on the same day and able to return to their everyday activities immediately- no compression garments necessary. The results are permanent and are typically visible immediately following the procedure.
SlimLipo is a semi-invasive treatment performed under local anesthetic. The procedure itself takes approximately 2 hours and utilizes laser technology to directly target fat and protect the surrounding tissues and nerves. An ultra-thin, flexible cannula is then used to ensure minimal pain and reduce the risk of bruising and swelling by 79%, compared to more traditional methods. Up to 6 liters of fat may be removed during a single session, and the laser wavelengths promote tightening of the dermis (undersurface of skin), reducing wrinkles and cellulite. It is also popular for smaller areas which require more precision, such as under the chin.
After surgery, patients are fitted with special drawstring undergarments, which promote the proper reshaping and tightening of the skin. Immediately following they are able to return home or to work. Physical limitations may be determined by the surgeon on an individual bases, while final results can be seen within 1-3 months.
Zeltiq CoolScultping® is the newest, non-invasive method of liposuction which uses a handheld device to precisely freeze and permanently destroy fat cells below the surface of the skin. The treatment of one area lasts only 1 hour and is completely painless. Protected by a special gel membrane and device settings, only fat cells are targeted and all other tissues, organs and nerves remain unaffected.
CoolScultping is suitable for almost every part of the body, including the abdomen, inner and outer thighs, hips and buttocks. The only limitation is that the target area must be an appropriate size to fit the vacuum aspiration instrument (CoolSooth®). The biggest advantage of this method is its speed, simplicity and zero-recovery time. As soon as the procedure is complete, patients are able to return home or to work and resume their daily activities. Most patients only require a single treatment and effects are noticeable immediately. Full results are seen within 3 months.
Salutara does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. The information on this site is merely to orientate and provide a general outline. It does not replace professional advice, diagnosis and treatment recommended by a physician.