Don’t be fooled by advertisements that promise cheap and easy plastic surgery in a vacation setting. Many plastic surgery locations overseas are gorgeous, and offer resort-like settings in Thailand, Costa Rica, Mexico and beyond. However, what most advertisements for plastic surgery tourism don’t tell you about are the dangers and risks for traveling abroad to undergo such procedures. While some people travel overseas for plastic surgery and return home looking and feeling great, the dangers of doing so are growing -- especially as plastic surgery tourism continues to expand.
In a report titled “Experts advise caution as Dominican Republic grows into a major cosmetic surgery destination,” the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) cautioned Americans to think twice before traveling overseas -- particularly to the Dominican Republic -- for plastic surgery. The beauty of the Dominican Republic combined with low prices for medical procedures may be enticing, but their potential negative consequences are serious and may be life-altering.
According to the CDC’s report dated March 31, 2014, nearly 20 women from five states have developed serious bacterial infections after undergoing plastic surgery in the Dominican Republic within the last year. None of these women have died from their infections, but they have had to undergo long-term antibiotic treatment, fluid drainage, and additional surgeries.
Why are overseas plastic surgery procedures dangerous, and what can you do to avoid such a fate?
Always avoid going overseas for plastic surgery and other medical procedures. Although the pricing and locations may be attractive, there is no way to properly evaluate surgery conditions and the experience of your plastic surgeon. While there are qualified surgeons and outstanding facilities in other parts of the world, there is really no way to know if they are held to the same standards as American plastic surgeons and facilities.
In the United States, plastic surgeons undergo years of rigorous education and training before they are allowed to become board-certified by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Even then, surgeons must undergo annual training and education to maintain their certification to ensure the highest quality of skills and care. In addition to surgeon qualifications, facilities in the United States must adhere to strict standards in regards to maintaining equipment and supplies to avoid infections and contamination.
Additionally, keep in mind that your recovery from plastic surgery will not happen overnight. While overseas facilities may offer some post-operative comforts, very few individuals are able to spend a month or more away from home to recover. Those who view plastic surgery tourism as a sort of vacation may be in for a rude awakening when they realize that their recovery overrides any vacation enjoyment. Traveling too soon after surgery of any kind is not recommended, and can put patients at risk for a type of blood clot known as deep vein thrombosis (DVT), which can lead to serious consequences that require emergency treatment.
Stay within your local region for plastic surgery so you can have the comfort of knowing that your surgeon is board-certified and practices in a clean, safe, and technologically-advanced facility. Your risk of infection or complication will be significantly lower as a result, and your surgeon will have your best interests at heart. You will also be able to experience the comfort of recovering in your own home surrounded by friends and family who can help you during the recovery process. One of the most important elements to a successful, speedy, and stress-free recovery is having a support system nearby.
To learn more about the importance of board certification and staying near home for your plastic surgery needs, call Monarch Plastic Surgery today at (913) 663-3838 or (816) 436-3262 to schedule a consultation. Your health and safety is our number one concern, and we are here to provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision.