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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Recession Reschmession: Cosmetic Surgery Demand Remains Strong

The American Society of Aesthetic and Plastic Surgeons reports that Since 1997,  there has been a 155%+ increase in the total number of cosmetic procedures.

Even after the recession hit, Americans still made room in their budget for cosmetic self-improvement:  Americans spent nearly $10.7 billion on cosmetic procedures in 2010. Of that total almost $6.6 billion was spent on surgical procedures.

 From 2009-2010, there was almost a 9% increase in the total number of cosmetic surgical procedures, with over 1.6 million cosmetic surgical procedures this year.
  • Surgical procedures increased by more than 71%
  • Nonsurgical procedures increased by 228%

Mostly a girl thing.....
Women had almost 8.6 million cosmetic procedures, 92% of the total.  The number of cosmetic procedures for women increased over 164% from 1997.  The top five surgical procedures for women were:
But increasingly a guy thing too...
Men had over 750,000 cosmetic procedures, making 8% of the total number of cosmetic surgeries.

The number of cosmetic procedures for men increased over 88% from 1997.   The top five surgical procedures for men were:
  • liposuction 
  • rhinoplasty
  • eyelid surgery
  • breast reduction to treat enlarged male breast
  • cosmetic ear surgery

Mostly- but not limited to - middle age
People age 35-50 had the most procedures – more than 4 million, accounting for 44% of the total number of cosmetic procedures.

  • ages 19-34 account for 20% of procedures
  • ages 51-64 account for  28%
  • ages 65 and account for  7%
  • ages 18 and younger account for 1.3%
 ...with 1 in 5 among ethnic groups
Racial and ethnic minorities, as of last year had approximately 19% of all cosmetic procedures:
  • Hispanics 8%
  • African-Americans 6%
  • Asians 5%

Traveling for Beauty On The Rise
The recession has had a notable impact on cosmetic surgery in one key aspect: Health Travel Guides reports the number of people traveling abroad to have their procedures shows a double digit increase over the past two years.

Director of International Patient Services Deborah Natsch reports that procedure popularity for so-called 'cosmetic travelers' mirrors the ASAPS report on procedure popularity, with breast enhancement procedures leading the way.

"Getting breast augmentation abroad means working with a board-certified cosmetic plastic surgeon who is a member of ASAPS, but the patient saves well over 50%, simply due the structure of the health care system," Ms. Natsch points out. 

The US fee-for-services model has driven up the cost of medical care to the point that US ranks #1 on health care spending, but lower than #30 on infant mortality and life expectancy.   It's no wonder that more and more Americans are choosing to circumvent a system that charges too much, particular for elective surgeries.

Natsch reports that the average cost of breast augmentation in a top-flight cosmetic surgery clinic in Cancun, for example, is about $4500, while breast lift runs about $4,250.  Plus, there is the added advantage of recovering in a beautiful setting.  The program prices include a dedicated Health Travel Guide (chat with one here) and even a logistics coordinator to book patient's travel.

"We have an 80% referral rate," said Natsch. "Our patients are delighted with their results, and many have additional procedures that would have been out of reach had they chosen to stay in the U.S. "

1 comment:

helathcare said...

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