New Global Study Shows Confidence Trumps Youth for Women Undergoing Cosmetic Procedures

Beautiful, confident, mature woman

Recently released results of a biggest-of-its-kind, global study reveal a shift in the primary underlying reasons that women opt for cosmetic surgeries and other procedures. While a younger look once topped the reasons for undergoing these procedures, a sense of confidence now gets equal billing, too.

The study was commissioned by Allergan, the Dublin-based global medical aesthetics company and the maker of Juvéderm® facial fillers. Researchers surveyed upward of 8,000 women living in 16 countries and found that the desire to boost self-confidence today is considered equally as important as aesthetics as a factor in choosing beauty treatments. Titled The Changing Face of Beauty: A Global Report, the study shows that today’s health-savvy women increasingly seek to control how they look as a way to change how they feel as an individual, researchers say.

The study included a survey of women from throughout the US, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, South Korea, Spain, Thailand, Turkey and the United Kingdom. Here’s what they reported:

  • 42 percent say that self-confidence is equally as important as improving the aesthetics of sagging skin;
  • 74 percent make the effort to look good primarily for themselves;
  • 37 percent do it for their romantic partners;
  • 15 percent are influenced to look good by their friends;
  • 63 percent consider general beautification as a top motivator;
  • 50 percent remain primarily driven by the goal of addressing signs of aging (this is true of women from every area except China, where changing or enhancing a specific feature was the key trigger).
  • 56 percent say that skin quality and complexion are as important as body shape.
  • To that end, 65 percent agree that facial fillers are more socially acceptable than they were five years ago.

“What is especially exciting about this new research is the discovery that women around the world are united by an increasing desire to control how their looks evolve with time,” says Caroline Van Hove, Senior Vice President, International Medical Aesthetics at Allergan. “And whether through photography filters, makeup or aesthetic procedures, investing in beauty is their way of positively influencing their image.”

If you’re seeking a healthy confidence boost via professionally performed cosmetic procedures, Jacksonville’s Parkway Plastic Surgery can help. Call 904-396-1186 to schedule a consultation.

CDC Warns Against Traveling Overseas for Plastic Surgery

Beautiful woman at airport

Each year, particularly during the summertime, upward of 750,000 Americans travel abroad, not for leisure but to undergo medical treatment that’s either unavailable or deemed too costly here in the United States. Many of these unsuspecting travelers are crossing borders and oceans specifically for plastic surgery. If you’re considering seeking cosmetic procedures outside of the US, you’ll want to reconsider when you hear what health officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have to say.

Prompted by an August 2013 incident in which a Maryland doctor treated two women who had developed serious infections after undergoing cosmetic surgery at the same Dominican Republic clinic, CDC officials launched a nationwide probe into the issue. Investigators soon identified 21 people in six states who had recently received surgery in the Dominican Republic and were infected with rapidly growing mycobacteria (RGM), a bacteria that can cause or aggravate a range of potentially devastating medical conditions. These include posttraumatic and postsurgical wound infections, bone and joint infections, catheter-related infections, postinjection abscesses, disseminated cutaneous disease, pulmonary disease, central nervous system disease and cervical lymphadenitis.

Of the victims identified, 15 had undergone liposuction, 12 abdominoplasty, eight buttocks augmentation, six breast augmentation and four breast reduction. They reported a range of symptoms including severe swelling, pain, scarring and fluid drainage. Eight were hospitalized, some more than once. Medical records made available to media for nine of the patients revealed they underwent surgery, which included procedures like drainage or implant removal, to treat their infections.

Thirteen had visited the same clinic in the Dominican Republic as the first two women treated. That clinic since has closed, according to the country’s Ministry of Health. Just how the infections were caused remains unknown, but Dr. Doug Esposito, a medical epidemiologist‎ with the CDC’s Travelers’ Health Branch, says “any breach in sterile technique” can cause bacteria to get into a person’s wound.

A survey of the patients revealed that 90 percent of them chose to travel abroad for cosmetic surgery at least in part to save money. Cost analysis research shows that patients can save upward of 88 percent on cosmetic procedures outside the US. Unfortunately for many of them, the potential for dire health consequences and costs related to corrective treatments can be devastating. That’s primarily because acceptable standards of care often are far lower in other countries than here in the US.

“[Medical tourism] is a rapidly growing market, and we have relatively little data on the extent of this practice,” Esposito said. “We need to understand the nature of the problem and the risks people might be experiencing.”

Don’t take chances with your looks or, more importantly, your health. If you live in the Northeast Florida area and are considering cosmetic surgery, call 904-396-1186 to schedule a consultation with Parkway Plastic Surgery’s board-certified cosmetic surgeon.

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