One in five people who go under the knife are 'unsuitable' for cosmetic surgery, say surgeons.
According to an internal survey by the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS), patients can often be "dangerously misinformed" when consultations are not held by the surgeon performing the operation.
BAAPS members revealed that consultations held with brokers, customer advisors and salespeople can fail to fully explain risks, recommend unsuitable procedures or provide incorrect advice on surgical plans to patients.
BAAPS president Rajiv Grover added that such recommendations for surgery are often "financially motivated."
Ahead of a government inquiry due to be published later this month, BAAPS recommend that consultations are only carried out by the operating surgeon.
"It’s little wonder that we constantly hear horror stories of bad outcomes and dissatisfied patients when many of them shouldn’t have undergone the procedure in the first place!" says Grover.
"The reality is that, in the right circumstances, aesthetic plastic surgery can have a positive impact on a person’s life.
"Under the wrong conditions –- particularly in a sales-driven, ‘stack em high’ environment -– the results can be no less than catastrophic.
The poll also highlights that BAAPS surgeons, who abide by the two-week ‘cooling off’ period and champion the notion of 'informed consent' on the part of patients, turn away a high proportion of people who express an interest in cosmetic surgery.
The most common reasons members give for recommending against surgery are:
- the procedure being unsuitable or unnecessary, for example being too young for a facelift
- unrealistic expectations, such as wanting to look like a specific celebrity
- medical reasons including smoking, obesity or a heart condition