Cosmetic Surgery; what are the true costs?


Pioneer of the Award Winning Pre & Post Support Initiative and PaPPS Training, Norman Wright, Integrative Psychotherapist, discusses the true cost of Cosmetic Surgery from an Emotional, Relational and Psychological perspective.

In 2015, over 51,000 Britons opted for a cosmetic procedure generating £ 3.6 billion. 1 in 5 of these procedures, leave patients dissatisfied with their expectations not being met or in psychological distress depressed and disadvantaged financially.,

So, what are the costs of clinicians not supporting or enabling their patients to consider their ERP well-being and implications of the procedures or treatments of choice before and after them?

“It is not just the “cowboys” who see the pounds behind the patient. I champion Patient Safety, Health & Well-Being as well as educating them on their ERP pre and post procedure. I also believe in empowering people to see the person behind the patient. I have been inspired to launch a dedicated PaPPS Initiative and Training for both patients and the Industry” says Norman.

When cowboys were in their heyday, forging, discovering and establishing what it was to be a citizen in a new land, there were few ethical and moral principles upon the land or between people. This period was known as the Wild West! A term used to describe the landscape of the cosmetic/aesthetic industry in the UK and US.

The blame for patients being unhappy or becoming depressed has been levelled at 'cowboy' practitioners or clinicians that are not qualified to undertake procedures. Does this mean that unscrupulous practitioners performed treatments on those patients that are unhappy or depressed? On the other hand, is this just convenient scapegoating and hides an obvious fact that unhappy patients will come from across the board of legitimate as well as illegitimate practice?

From my perspective, you cannot legislate or assess patients to identify if they may react negatively towards their procedure, the clinician or the clinic, whether they have gotten their procedure on the cheap or paid top dollar or whether clinicians have undertaken the necessary additional surgical aesthetic training beyond that is required to obtain GMC/NMC registration.

The industry is substantially growing year on year and, along with the changing attitudes of consumers, improving safer technology and accessibility to expertise, the risks, vulnerabilities and costs for both service providers and users of cosmetic procedures, aesthetic treatments and products has grown and changed. Essentially, the cosmetic and aesthetic industry is at a point where it is financial, professional and moral folly not to have an integrated patient care approach as the centre piece of professional ethical practice and services to the general public.

I believe it is not reasonable for patients to feel as though there is something wrong with them for seeking to improve self-esteem/concept and relationships with self and others, treated as a commodity and considered to be in psychological distress for considering a cosmetic procedure or aesthetic treatment, by clinicians. The final insult is to be viewed as one of the 'crazies' when seeking redress for an aspect of the cosmetic/aesthetic experience they are displeased with.

If the government is not leading the industry in the direction deemed necessary by the industry, then we must become proactive, take the initiative and put the patient at the centre of things in clear and unambiguous ways.

It is apparent that patients need their ERP well-being to be considered and supported throughout the journey of surgery or treatment, alongside the potential ERP costs and benefits. Whether they recognise it or not, patients are vulnerable and unaware of the impacts surgery, aesthetic treatments, with their ongoing replenishment, will have on their ERP well-being pre and post procedure.

My PaPPS Initiative and PaPPS Training is all about enabling and supporting the industry to ensure that each and every patient has the best journey and experience possible from what can be very traumatic when it goes wrong and life changing when it goes right. It is also concerned with promoting a philosophy, moral code and humanistic attitude towards patients that is mutually respectful in the professional relationship, minimises psychological as well as physical harm, to both clinician and patient, promotes patients and clinicians being active in ensuring that both have the best surgical or aesthetic journey possible.
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