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    Plastic Surgery As A Fabric Of American Life

    Recent articles on people who undergo plastic surgery report that most patients are average everyday people. While plastic surgery has historically been thought of as restricted to the rich and famous, the past twenty years has seen a paradigm shift in the makeup of the plastic surgery populatioh. This article was refreshing because they all had positive experiences, which is usually the norm, as opposed to many articles which talk about patient's problems and complications which is not the norm.

    Bit the giest of the article is what strikes me as significant. The large numbers of plastic surgery procedures done today could occur for only one reason.that the everday person in society is now representative of the typical plastic surgery patient. There is only a very small fraction of society that is famous or wealthy. the millions of plastic surgery procedures done today could not be accounted for by this relatively small segment of society. In the past twenty years we have seen plastic surgery work its way into the mainstream of society and is much a part of American culture as Starbucks, cell phones, and My Space.

    The typical plastic surgery patient in my practice is just a normal person from the middle fabric of society, the range goes from the unemployed to a company CEO. Nearly 40% of my patients now use financing for major procedures, reinforcing the concept of the 'average' patient having plastic surgery. That number is starting to approach finance numbers for major appliances or other big ticket home items.

    You may ask yourself why.why do such large numbers of people sign up for plastic surgery currently? Is it the marketing hype from surgeons, is it the media convincing us that me must look better and younger through their projected images, or is our society just so vain? Probably all three of these have some responsibility, but there is one bigger reason. The main reason, in my practice experience, is that most plastic surgery procedures simply work and deliver what they purport to do. Breast implants make breast bigger and more shapely, tummy tucks really do flatten stomachs, facelifts do turn back the clock and tighten that jaw and neck line, and noses do get better shapes that look better on one's face. Yes, plastic surgeons and plastic surgery procedures are not perfect.

    Every result is not ideal and some patients do experience complications. And yes sometimes plastic surgery procedures are overhyped. But most palstic surgery patients, by far, have good results, are satisfied with what has been done, and would go through the same procedure(s) again. A finding that some refer to as accomplishment feedback.

    This explains why the returning customer now makes up nearly 1/3 of my plastic surgery oeprations performed every year. Such positive experiences very directly promotes plastic surgery as a satisfied patient is very likely to consider another procedure or tell a friend, who may then go on to have plastic surgery themselves. Every business and profession recognizes the tremendous influence of such word of mouth referrals. Plastic surgery is and will continue to be for all walks of life. Its benefits are wide reaching and the ability for all of society to benefit, from the child born with a cleft defect to the middle-aged sales representative who wants to look more refreshed, will continue to be more pervasive. The propagation of plastic surgery has as much to do with its overall effectiveness and high patient satisfaction as it does with marketing and media promotions.

    Dr Barry Eppley, board-certified plastic surgeon, operates his private practice at Clarian Health in suburban Indianapolis. He writes a daily blog on topics and trends in plastic surgery at http://www.exploreplasticsurgery.com



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