- ASK FOR RECOMMENDATIONS
Why is it so important to ask friends for recommendations? If we don’t have that many friends in Dubai, are there any websites we can look at for
Recommendations? Why shouldn’t we always trust adverts / pictures that promise perfect results?
2. RESEARCH QUALIFICATIONS
- Most valid referral is off course your friend who has undergone surgery with a doctor or has used services of a centre.
- Next best is referral by a doctor as they are confident about the credential of the surgeon.
- Website is also a good source particularly if they are registered with Ministry of Health in UAE.
- One could also look at the credential of a surgeon online and through various International societies, such as International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, American Society of Plastic surgeons, International Confederation for Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery and local society ie Emirates Plastic Surgery society under Emirates medical association. Etc
- In UAE all the advertisements are scrutinized by MOH so you can trust that the credentials are valid and services are legal. However that may not give any indication of how good a surgeon is. Finally most important decision is always based on personal consultation where you can see your comfort level with the surgeon.
Why is this so important? Are there non-qualified surgeons / doctors known to be operating in Dubai? What qualifications should the surgeon / doctor
have? Is there any way of checking this officially? (websites etc)?
Moh laws are very stringent now and it does not allow any unqualified surgeon/ doctor to practice in UAE. When you meet the doctor you can ask for the certification. You can cross check the qualification with Ministry of health/ Emirates Medical Association/ International societies.
3. WEIGH UP THE RISKS
Every cosmetic procedure has a risk. Could you tell us a little about the risk with anaesthetic and how often things could go wrong? Why should we
never go under the knife without considering these things? What kind of legal forms would we be asked to sign before procedures? Can you tell us
about the little-known risks – things people don’t often think about when having cosmetic procedures?
There are two kinds of risks- surgical and anaesthesia risks.
Surgical risks can be bleeding, infection, scarring, skin loss etc however in expert hands they are very uncommon.
Anaesthetic risks include reaction to drugs, respiratory problems etc. If a patient is healthy and the surgeon and anaesthesiologist are aware of patients medical history then again risks are very unlikely.
I personally have carried out over 5000 procedures of different grades and severity and have never had life threatening issues and any major complications. It is important that the surgeon explains all the risks, select patients based on risk benefit ratio, takes necessary precautions to prevent any complications on the other hand patient complies with the instructions provided by the surgeon and follows up with the surgeon regularly. There are various documents that the patient and surgeon has to sign that includes general/ informed consent forms, medical history form, financial agreement form etc.
4. ASK ABOUT RECOVERY TIME
Do people often forget about the recovery time? How much recovery time would you advise for the main cosmetic procedures (breast enhancement, liposuction, face lifts etc)? How will people feel when they wake up and days afterwards? How long will patients spend in hospital – and how much will they be able to do in the days / weeks that follow? How long should be booked off work for these procedures?
All the patient undergoing operations need to be informed about recovery time, pain requiring medications, rest at home, off work required, exercise and what to expect during the healing period.
Eg I explain patient for breast enlargement that they need general anaesthesia, operating time is approximately 40-50 minutes, they need overnight hospital stay, pain medications are required for 1 week, they need rest at home for 4-5 days with activities limited to personal grooming, after 10 days- 2 weeks they are back to work and 3-4 weeks they can start supervised exercise. A liposuction patient may recover earlier whereas tummy tuck may take longer time.
5. CONSIDER FOLLOW-UP PROCEDURES
Can you tell us a little about how many procedures are actually irriversible – and how many will need follow-up treatments / replacements in 5/10/15 years time etc? For breast enhancements, how long is this likely to last? For lip fillers? For implants? Etc etc. Why is it so important to consider these ongoing costs – do people often forget about them?
Since body structure changes with time and lifestyle there is no treatment that can be considered best one. Procedures like anti aging shots and some fillers may last 4 months to 1 year depending upon multiple factors, surgeries last longer depending upon the extent and type of surgery performed. Breast augmentation is known to last for 30- 40 years, however there are different protocols depending upon type of implant, where it is placed, breast structure and changes due to aging and lifestyle.
Medical, Cosmetic & Health management are ongoing, as far as cosmetic treatment are concerned people have choice based on their requirement and affordability.
6. SET A REALISTIC BUDGET
Why is it important to go with the right clinic – rather than the cheapest price? Why do problems arise if people try to get the cheapest procedure available? How many ongoing costs are involved – aftercare, follow-up procedures, time off work etc? How can patients research the average price for treatments so they know they are getting a good deal?
The cost of a surgery depends upon the skill and experience of surgeon & team, time required for surgery and follow ups, quality of hospital, technology and materials used. Surgeons do try to contain the cost by being efficient and thoughtful regarding the consumption. To make a surgery cheaper there are many compromises that are required in terms of quality of hospital, technology, materials etc which some surgeons do and others don’t. It is advisable to take few opinions, talk to friends, doctors, and see the facilities to get the best deal.
7. THINK ABOUT THE END RESULT
Which cosmetic surgery treatments offer different results? (eg breast enhancements, where different implants create different results). How many
consultations are usually required – and what will these involve? Why should patients never be hurried into treatments? What is recommended ‘thinking
period’ after consultation?
It is advisable to have at least two consultations, first consultation involves questionnaires by doctors regarding your concern and medical health, followed by detail explanation by the surgeon. During this consultation patient can ask questions to clear their concerns. The patient leaves with all information & written materials. Then he/ she come back with list of questions and concerns on the 2nd
consultation. The time between two consultations is called “cooling off” period, it can vary from few days to few weeks. Once the patient is comfortable with the surgeon then there is a 3rd
visit required for medical checkup and preoperative planning with surgeon, anaesthesiologist and staff.
The end result depends upon many factors body structure, health, extent of problem, healing process etc. majority of the cosmetic surgery has very high satisfaction rate that is why they are so popular.
8. CONSIDER NON-INVASIVE ALTERNATIVES
Which cosmetic treatments now have non-invasive alternatives (eg –non-invasive alternatives to liposuction) and how effective are these treatments?
What is the different in result / price / recovery time? Do you think non-invasive options are the future of cosmetic surgery – as they get more
advanced? Are there any that give disappointing results, making them waste of money?
Noninvasive treatments are not replacement for surgery neither do they have dramatic result as in surgery. Unlike past where we did not have noninvasive options, surgery was the solution to most of the problems. After the advancement and introduction of noninvasive technologies, surgeries can be avoided for minor and moderate problems. Eg anti aging shots, Fillers, fractionated lasers can be used for early signs of aging avoiding extensive skin tightening surgeries. However severe sagging skin still benefits from face lift more then any noninvasive technology.
Non invasive fat reduction may be effective for superficial and small amount of fat but cannot remove large bulges and protruberances. However they can be effectively used in combination to enhance the result and prevent unevenness.
In my opnion minimal invasive p options are the future and not non invasive options. For eg Laser lipolysis and syringe aspiration is a minimal invasive option to remove moderate amount of fat that can help to remove few inches of fat folds/ bulges. Use of fat cells to rejuvenate the face or enhance the breast is a minimal invasive option.
Noninvasive technologies at this point of time have limited indications and needs to be used wisely to be cost effective.