Cosmetic surgery; what are the pitfalls?

Cosmetic surgery; what are the pitfalls?

Cosmetic surgery is becoming more and more popular with thousands of procedures now taking place each day.

People can undergo a myriad of different treatments, from an eyebrow lift (blepharoplasty) or face lift (rhytidectomy) to breast augmentation or a tummy tuck (known as an abdominoplasty).

People often confuse plastic and cosmetic surgery, so it is important to distinguish between the two. Where plastic surgery is a form of reconstruction due to issues such as injury, birth trauma or disease, cosmetic surgery is something which a patient chooses to undertake because they are unhappy with an aspect of their body. Cosmetic surgery hasn’t been without controversy over the years and there are some common pitfalls to avoid.

Do your research The surgeon must, as a minimum, be registered with the GMC and be fully insured to carry out the procedure in the UK. The Royal College of Surgeons recommend choosing a surgeon who is on the GMC’s specialist register in the area of practice relevant to the procedure you are having.

You should also check that the provider – the hospital, company or clinic – is registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC), which is the independent regulator of health services in England

Know what procedure you’re having This may seem obvious but it is surprising the amount of patients who undergo a procedure which has not been properly explained to them, including the risks and complications. In the worse case scenario, patients undergo surgery which they are not aware they are having or required in the first place. Always check that the person who advises you about the surgery is the surgeon who will actually perform or supervise the procedure.

Scarring Some people are extremely dissatisfied with the scarring they have been left with following a particular cosmetic procedure. Since cosmetic surgery seeks to improve the way you look, scars can be particularly troubling. Hypertrophic scars (ones which are thickened and / or raised) for example, can occur in up to five per cent of breast augmentation procedures. They can be upsetting if the patient feels that the scar can be easily seen or is in the wrong place. Make sure you ask questions about the scarring you are likely to end up with, so that you have a realistic view of what to expect.

General appearance dissatisfaction Some patients feel that what they are ultimately left with is not what they had expected or desired. People who undergo breast surgery sometimes find that they have a contouring or asymmetry problem while those who have had facial surgery simply dislike the result. Again, it is important to be really clear about what you’re expecting compared to what you are likely to end up, with.

Wolferstans currently act for a number of clients who are dissatisfied with their cosmetic procedure and have recovered damages for clients following failed blepharoplasty (eye lid augmentation), breast augmentation, laser face peels, liposuction to name but a few procedures.

If you, a family member or friend have recently undergone cosmetic surgery and are concerned about the procedure or end result and would like a no obligation discussion, please contact Jodie O’Connor on 01752 292360 or

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