The importance of safety in cosmetic surgeryPublished on 8th January 2019
Undergoing any kind of cosmetic surgery is a serious business. All surgery carries a risk, and it is really important that you are sure the procedure is right for you and that you have chosen a qualified, reputable, experienced and trustworthy practitioner.
Here at Liverpool Cosmetic Clinic, we pride ourselves on our high standard of patient care. We use highly experienced and highly qualified surgeons who carry out specialist surgery to the highest possible standard, and you can be sure you’re in safe hands.
Despite the best endeavours of safety campaigners, there remains a problem with “cowboys” being allowed to carry out cosmetic surgery. These individuals are often unqualified and inexperienced, and when procedures go wrong, they are nowhere to be seen.
Great strides have been made in recent years in trying to ensure the safety of patients undergoing cosmetic procedures, but there are still many surgeons who are prepared to disregard their patients’ wellbeing in order to make a quick buck.
It can’t be over-emphasised how important it is scrutinise a cosmetic surgeon’s credentials before undergoing any treatment. We’ve all heard the horror stories: patients being disfigured by Brazilian buttlifts going awry, horrific breast implants that explode, dodgy nose jobs and so on – cosmetic surgery is not a place to scrimp and save. Whilst many of the procedures that go wrong are carried out abroad, there are countless horror stories in the UK too, and you really can’t be too careful.
How to make sure you’re in safe hands
Before any cosmetic surgery is carried out a thorough consultation should take place. A good surgeon will not pressurise you into going ahead with surgery and will allow you all the time you need to make a decision. You must not trust everything people say – unscrupulous providers will say anything to get you to part with your money.
If a treatment is advertised very cheaply – you need to question why. Very cheap deals, too good to be true special offers, 2 for 1s and so on should be a huge red flag – reputable surgeons don’t offer huge discounts or resort to highly irresponsible marketing messages. There are thousands of practitioners desperate to make a quick buck – don’t allow them to disfigure your face or body in the process of doing so.
Reputable surgeons should be qualified doctors who have undergone specialist surgical training, and they are usually members of professional bodies. The simple fact that someone is medically qualified doesn’t always make them adequately trained though, so check out their suitability to perform your chosen procedure. Get in touch with BAAPS (www.BAAPS.org.uk) if you wish to find out if a surgeon is properly credentialed.
You will need to be vigilant: it is essential to check the surgeon’s qualifications, experience, insurance, and that the premises in which the procedure is carried out is clean, well equipped and reputable, meeting Care Quality Commmission standards.
Make sure that you take your time, that you are comfortable with your decision and that you are comfortable with the surgeon and the clinic or hospital. Beware of free consultations and booking fees and non-refundable deposits.
You must ensure the after care is thoroughly explained before agreeing to anything, and that the procedure, the results you can reasonably expect, and any potential risks are all made clear before you agree to anything. It is crucial, also, that you make sure your provider has a ‘cooling off’ period, a period in which you can cancel any surgery you have agreed to should you change your mind.
Sharon Bennett, Chair of The British Association of Cosmetic Nurses said: “I believe cooling off is an essential element of a cosmetic consultation and especially important when irreversible surgical changes are being made.
“Patients need reflective time to process and research all the information given at consultation, including risks, which may be quite different to what they initially expected, then come to an independent and well- informed decision.”
With the emphasis now finally shifting to patient safety, there is a plethora of resources that patients can utilise before agreeing to a cosmetic surgery procedure. The British Association of Plastic Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS) devised a Think Over Before You Make Over campaign to address the worrying lack of consumer awareness about how to choose safe and appropriate cosmetic surgery. This resource allows consumers to access information they need to make informed choices.
Money is often tight and it’s easy to understand why people may be tempted by cheap offers of cosmetic surgery, either abroad or at home, but paying a specialist, reputable and established surgeon is worth every penny. You must not play Russian Roulette with your health and looks, it really isn’t worth it.
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