CLINICS CLAIM TO ‘NOT HAVE THE SKILLS’ TO TREAT PIP RUPTURES
The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) have expressed their concerns over private clinics who are referring patients to the NHS for treatment of their ruptured PIP implants. Some clinics claim ‘not to have the skills’ to treat problems from the ruptured faulty implants from an earlier breast enlargement. Patients are being sent to the NHS to undergo further surgery separately. The BAAPS have explained any trained and qualified plastic surgeon would be able to efficiently address the repercussions of rupture, and warns the initiatives could simply be a cost-containment exercise.
BAAPS President Fazel Fatah, consultant plastic surgeon explains:
“One of the side effects from ruptured PIP implants is an inflammatory response in the tissues exposed to the silicone - which is known to be of industrial, rather than medical grade. This can manifest as lumps and bumps in the chest area, under the breast, and enlarged lymph nodes. The lumps that form around the breast – a reaction to free silicone known as granulomas – can vary in size and if large may require to be surgically removed. The lymph glands, which are located in the armpits, act as a filter mechanism and they can become affected and engorged. If greatly enlarged or becoming painful they may require removal after investigation.
Mr Fatah continues: “Any qualified plastic surgeon can easily address these issues, make the appropriate decisions and manage arrangements for investigation in an effective manner – it is part of standard training. Although it may be ostensibly reassuring that untrained practitioners aren’t just trying to ‘have a go’ at complex procedures, these actions then beg the question: who are the surgeons performing the implant replacements and what training have they undergone? Otherwise, one may be pardoned for assuming that this initiative is purely a cost-containment exercise. The alternative doesn’t bear thinking of.”
Consultant plastic surgeon and former BAAPS President Nigel Mercer adds:
“I’ve recently seen a number of patients with lumps in their armpits - in one woman's case, the surgeon directly admitted to her not having the skills to remove them. In another instance, the clinic itself told the patient their surgeons weren't competent enough to perform the procedure. Either these clinics' practitioners aren’t qualified plastic surgeons as is generally claimed on their websites, which is clearly alarming, or they don’t want to bear the costs of caring for their own patients. Frankly, neither option should be acceptable to the women affected.”
UNDER CRITICISM: PAY-DAY LOANS ADVERTISED FOR COSMETIC SURGERY
Over the weekend specialised websites offering quick fix loans to tide people over until payday have been criticised for promoting unsecured loans for surgery such as; face lifts, tummy tucks and breast enhancement.
Advertised as: ‘Good looks always make a person feel certain and unique. However, many a times, having birth defects, like improper chin or nose can be a nerve-racking obstacle for you.
On the contrary, they can be vanished without any trouble with the aid of these our schemes. Our cheap fast loans can be useful for your fiscal crisis and can help you to obtain a beautiful look.’
The perfectly polished websites are designed around short-term loans usually of around £100 - £1000 which are repaid in a couple of weeks. However one site is now offering unsecured loans of up to £25,000 for cosmetic surgery without specifying their repayment rates. The site claims the debt could be repaid between 1 and 25 years.
The interest rates on unsecured loans tend to be far higher because of the risk to the lender.
Consumer groups have warned that a tougher lending climate from banks and building societies has forced financially vulnerable people to use the loan companies, whose rates can exceed 4,200 per cent APR on short-term loans.
If customers struggle to make regular repayments, they are hit with large penalties in addition to the high interest rates meaning their original loan amount can quickly spiral.
Pay-day loan companies argue they offer a vital service to people who cannot get credit quickly from their banks.
Another website says: ‘Don’t get delayed, get the look you were craving for with loans for cosmetic surgery.’
Reputable surgeons of the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) stress to patients, cosmetic surgery is a serious decision and must not be pressured or made quickly.
President elect Mr Rajiv Grover says: “‘I say, “If you need a loan for this, please don’t have it at all – wait and do this once you have saved up and you are totally in the right frame of mind”,’Stella Creasy, Labour MP for Walthamstow, in east London, said: ‘This is another example of how the industry cannot get its act together. The longer the Government leaves this, the worse the situation will get. We should be warning people that if you don’t have the money, don’t spend it.’
TOP SANTE MAGAZINE WARN OF UNREGULATED NON-SURGICAL TREATMENTS
Top Sante’s Health and Beauty magazine (March 2012) uncovers the truth behind non-surgical treatments in ‘The Beauty Jab Time Bomb’.
Each year in the UK, one million non-surgical cosmetic procedures are carried out - many by unqualified practitioners in high street clinics and living rooms. Non-invasive treatments including lasers, peels and injectables have created an industry fast approaching a value of £1.1 billion. While doctors and dentists can call themselves a ‘cosmetic surgeon’ and perform procedures such as breast enlargement and tummy tucks without any specialist training, it’s thought the exact figures could be much higher.
The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) recently found that 40% of its members have seen patients experiencing problems with their permanent facial fillers. And a quarter of them have seen such poor results that they needed surgery to correct them.
Consultant plastic surgeon and SaferCosmeticSurgery member, Charles Nduka, has seen these disasters first-hand: ‘One woman had fillers around her mouth, but had absolutely no idea what she had been injected with. Now she is left with unsightly lumps that will be with her forever, and is incredibly distressed. The entire non-surgical cosmetic sector is as dangerous as the Wild West, with the public unaware of who to trust.’
Worryingly there are an estimated 160 fillers available – compared to six in the US where regulation is much tighter. Mr Nduka explained the fillers can be bought by anyone as they are not classified as medicines: ‘Instead they are classified as “medical devices,”’ which means they only have to meet basic safety standards – similar to a child’s toy. Alarmingly the potentially life-changing substances don’t have to go through clinical trials.
HOW TO CHOOSE A REPUTABLE PRACTITIONER OR SURGEON
Mr Nduka advised Top Sante readers to visit the SaferCosmeticSurgery.co.uk website for a full list of important questions to ask when considering any form of cosmetic procedure: ‘A string of letters after their name is a good sign they have significant experience of performing these procedures, rather than just a weekend course. The letters FRCS (Plast) – meaning Fellowship of the Royal College Surgeons (Plastics) – after their name indicate a plastic surgeon.’
You wouldn’t let a dermatologist mess with your hair. Why trust someone who works in a hair salon with your skin?
BAAPS REPORT DRAMATIC INCREASE IN MEN OPTING FOR TUMMY TUCKS
Following their annual audit the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) revealed the number of cosmetic procedures continued to increase by nearly 6% on average - with not a single procedure decreased in popularity. Last year 43,069 surgical procedures were carried out in the UK which indicated a rise of 5.8% from 2010.
The most impressive stats have been recorded specifically in male tummy tucks (abdominoplasty), which showed an increase of 15%.
- 43,069 surgical procedures were carried out by BAAPS members in 2011, a 5.8% increase from 2010, when 38,274 were performed
- 38,771 of the procedures were carried out on women, a 5.8% increase on the 34,413 procedures in 2010
- Male surgery continues to account for 10% of all cosmetic surgery procedures
- Breast augmentation (‘boob jobs’) maintained a slow but constant growth of 6.2% from 9,418 to 10,003 in 2011 – continuing to hold its place as the commonest procedure of all
- ‘Man boob’ ops or Gynaecomastia kept its place as the 2nd most common procedure for men, rising by 7% from 741 to 790.
- BAAPS also saw in increase in male liposuction up by 8% to 511 from 473 in 2010
- Tummy tucks (abdominoplasty) proved popular with both sexes, with a rise of 7% from 3,039 to 3,251 in women but a staggering 15% increase in male procedures (108 to 124).
According to Fazel Fatah, consultant plastic surgeon and President of the BAAPS;
“It is understandable that procedures for the more noticeable areas of the face and body – such as breast augmentation, rhinoplasty (nose jobs) and eyelid surgery – continue to prove popular when patients are looking to get the most ‘impact’ from their surgery to enhance their mental well being and self-confidence. It is also not surprising to note a considerable rise in treatments such as tummy tucks and liposuction when there has been an increase in people undergoing obesity treatment such as gastric bands. These patients are usually left with a lot of loose skin that causes physical problems and unsightly body contour which can only be addressed by surgery.”
According to Rajiv Grover, consultant plastic surgeon and BAAPS President Elect with responsibility for the UK national audit of cosmetic surgery;
“The continued popularity of aesthetic plastic surgery even through financially difficult times demonstrates that the public sees real value in the psychological and physical improvement that can be achieved. Advances in techniques have also meant it’s harder to ‘tell’ if someone has undergone a procedure - they may just look well-rested, or refreshed! Whether because of the recent implant scare or a backlash against some ‘lunchtime’ non-surgical treatments that don’t deliver what they promise, it is reassuring that patients are doing their homework, evaluating criteria other than just price, and choosing BAAPS surgeons.”
REASONS TO CONSIDER INVESTING IN BREAST REDUCTION SURGERY
Many women struggle day to day because they have naturally large breasts which can cause all sorts of problems in life; however, breast reduction surgery will leave you with smaller, lighter breasts meaning you can lead a more comfortable and happier life. Here at Safer Cosmetic Surgery, we aim to offer you all of the advice and guidance you should need about a range of cosmetic procedures.
We understand that it’s a big decision to undertake any cosmetic procedure and if you are feeling slightly uneasy, we urge you to take a look through our website. You can learn about your chosen procedure, ask questions from experts and do comprehensive research into surgeons, meaning you will be able to make an informed decision about your surgery.
Aches and Pains
This is often the biggest reason why women invest in breast reduction surgery. Women that are born with naturally large breasts have to carry them around on a daily basis and this can put strain onto their backs or shoulders. It can also be a contributing factor towards other health problems such as breathing difficulties, because of the strain it puts on your heart and lungs. The process involved in breast reduction surgery is to remove fat and excess glandular tissue which will leave them smaller and more importantly, lighter.
Unfortunately, we are not all born in complete proportion and perfect sizes. For some women, their breasts will not be in proportion with the rest of their body, for example a relatively petite woman may have naturally large breasts. These women can often be subject to teasing, especially in their teenage years, and more often than not they will struggle to find clothes that fit them correctly.
If you are considering breast reduction surgery, whatever the reason, contact us here at Safer Cosmetic Surgery to learn about the processes involved and ask any questions that you may have regarding the procedure. For more information visit our website and see some of the services we can offer you or call one of our team on 0800 622 6262 to discuss your worries.
CLEAR NEW GUIDANCE ON PIP BREAST IMPLANTS ISSUED FOR PATIENTS AND DOCTORS
Authoritative new professional and patient guidance for all women who have received a PIP breast implant has been released today (Tuesday, 17 Jan 2012) by the professional bodies representing surgeons. The new guidance provides patients with practical advice on what to expect and their rights, indicates to GPs where to refer different groups of patient and advises surgeons on treatment.
The guidance goes beyond current government advice aimed at patients with symptoms to give additional practical advice for the majority of patients who do not. Key points include:
- All patients should be able to have an assessment by a surgeon regardless of whether they have symptoms.
- If a patient requests removal - they should expect to get this, regardless of the presence of any symptoms. If a patient wants time to make up their minds this should be respected - surgery to remove implants must not be a time-limited "take it or leave it" offer.
- Scans should only be used as a tool to assist patients make a decision and only take place after the patient has had a consultation with a surgeon. Scanning alone is not a reliable enough tool for detecting failure rates in breast implants.
- Reaffirms the surgical association's view that all clinics have an ethical and moral duty of care to offer these patients treatment without charge.
- Advice to GPs on where to refer patients with different symptoms to ensure they get most appropriate treatment.
The document, Poly Implant Prostheses (PIP) Breast Implants: Joint surgical statement on Clinical Guidance for Patients, GPs and Surgeons has been jointly endorsed by the Association of Breast Surgery, British Association of Plastic, Aesthetic and Reconstructive Surgeons, British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, Federation of Surgical Speciality Associations and the Royal College of Surgeons.
Consultant Plastic Surgeon Tim Goodacre, Head of Professional Standards at the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS) said: "It has been a distressing time for all the women caught up in the PIP breast implant issue. We hope that this comprehensive guidance, for both patients and healthcare professionals, will ensure we can conclude this effectively and with compassion. We must now look at how cosmetic products and interventions are regulated in the UK more broadly so that we can avoid a repeat of this scenario. BAPRAS continues to be driven by patient safety and professional standards and we look forward to the next meeting of the Expert Group so we can discuss these points in more detail."
According to consultant plastic surgeon and BAAPS President Fazel Fatah: "We are delighted to jointly provide clear surgical guidance that removes any ambiguity about the right course of action, not just for women who have PIP breast implants, but to all those who become involved in their care and treatment - including GPs and surgeons. Our message also reinforces the importance of commitment to duty of care for anyone providing private health services to the public. The BAAPS remains steadfast in our recommendation for precautionary removal of these defective implants."
Dick Rainsbury, President of the Association of Breast Surgery, said: "ABS welcomes the clear guidance provided for patients and their surgeons through this document."
The guidance is available from the RCS website here.
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