Plastic Surgery Increasing In Popularity In The UK

New Figures Show Continued Popularity Of Plastic Surgery In The UK As Economy Improves

03.02.2014

There has been a significant increase in the amount of plastic surgery taking place in the UK.

Research from the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (Baaps) shows there was a 17 per cent year-on-year increase in cosmetic operations in 2013.

Liposuction (up 41 per cent) and breast implants (up 17 per cent) both rose in popularity during the 12 months. The latter's increase is surprising considering the recent PIP faulty breast implants scandal, but it remains the number one procedure, with 11,135 operations carried out in 2013.

Rajiv Grover, consultant plastic surgeon and president of Baaps, said the latest figures show the "most impressive rise in demand for cosmetic surgery we have seen since the onset of the recession in 2008."

He added patient confidence has been restored, while wider economic performance means many people now have more disposable income and can therefore afford plastic surgery.

However, with growing interest in such surgery, it makes it more important than ever to have an industry that is regulated and puts patient safety as a priority. An independent review of the sector carried out last year floated the idea of better regulation, better training and proper redress if things go wrong.

The British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons supported the proposals, as it agreed the current regulatory framework was not protecting individuals from bad practice.

One suggestion was for the requirement of providers to ensure people are aware of the implications and risks of any procedure, while they should also be given adequate time to consider this information before agreeing to surgery.

Since the turn of the year, a new register has been in operation in England which records the details of every breast implant operation in the country. The industry is forecast to be worth £3.6 billion to the UK's economy by 2015.

Expert Opinion
The rising popularity of cosmetic surgery procedures of all kinds is another clear sign of why it is becoming ever more important for more to be done to ensure that the industry, as well as the devices used in such treatment, are fully regulated.

"We have seen a huge number of cases when people have undergone various cosmetic treatments and been left with both physical and psychological trauma as a result of errors or problems during procedures.

"As a result, we have been calling for a number of years for greater government intervention and regulation which will not only ensure high standards are upheld in the sector, but also guarantee that those responsible for safety failings or errors are also held to account.

"The safety of patients must always come first and it is vital that their welfare is at the heart of this growing industry."
Mandy Luckman, Partner