Cosmetic Surgery Today

Plastic Surgery News, Costs of Cosmetic Surgery and Elective Procedures Blog

UK Surgeons Say Plastic Surgery Vacations Could Be Fatal

Posted by Cosmetic Surgery Review on September 23, 2009

42-16474249Medical tourism continues to be among the leading travel trends in the United States and other parts of the world, but the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and several consumer organizations have issued warnings about getting plastic surgery overseas. Recently, The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) stated that they have documented several horror stories from Britons who have headed overseas to get discounted plastic surgery, and agreed that many people underestimate the risks involved with procedures performed abroad.

Many people head to countries in South America, the Far East and India to cash in on discounted cosmetic and plastic surgery procedures including liposuction, breast augmentation and tummy tucks.

While some doctors overseas have trained in the United States and the United Kingdom, the standards of the facilities they perform operations in may not be the same as they are in Western countries. In addition, many of the complications that arise from these procedures are not covered by health insurance or services such as the NHS, which means the patient must be prepared to pay for any problems out-of-pocket.

The president of the BAAPS, Nigel Mercer, stated that “it was a common misconception [among British patients] that plastic surgery could be a quick and pain-free experience”. (Source:

The Press and Journal also reports on several cases where patients experienced several side effects and had to undergo emergency surgery in order to ‘fix’ what the foreign plastic surgeon had done. In one case, a British woman who had a facelift overseas went back to Britain but developed blood clots in her lungs, resulting in death as soon as she returned home.

All individuals considering plastic surgery abroad must do extensive research about their doctor and the facility, and be certain that they have access to healthcare and insurance coverage should complications arise. More information about the pros and cons of medical tourism can be found here .


4 Responses to “UK Surgeons Say Plastic Surgery Vacations Could Be Fatal”

  1. There are too many sad cases like the one listed above. Patient desperately needs plastic surgery. Finds a cheaper doctor outside the United States. Surgery turns into nightmare. There’s an old saying, “You get what you pay for.” It couldn’t be any more true than with a plastic surgery. First and foremost, finding the right plastic surgeon sets the tone for the rest of the procedure.

  2. geomark said

    The campaign of FUD seems to be going full tilt now. Many of the overseas centers are far superior to those “back home”. How about some useful data, like comparing the fatality rates of overseas centers to those in the home countries, or might real data not looks so good?

    Do people really live by old sayings? Hopefully they instead make informed choices. The cost has little to do with the quality, in fact it seems to be inversely proportional. I know first hand.

  3. […] I saw another article, this one saying overseas procedure could be fatal. Oh my. The UK doctors must really be starting […]

  4. Jeri Simpson said

    What a bunch of bunk. I have had a tummy tuck, face lift and eye lift surgery by a prestigious plastic surgeon in Costa Rica, Dr. Alejandro Lev. The hospital where the surgery was performed, Cima San Jose, is Joint Commission Internation accredited. They had exactly the same standards that I would have expected in the US. Extraordinarily clean facilities, all practiced universal precautions. As someone who has worked in the health care field for well over 30 years, I would not have come here if it wasn’t the best. Do your own research. These medical journals have one thing in common, they are out to protect their own physician members.

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