Thursday, May 7, 2009

Plastic Surgery - What recesssion

The economic downturn has certainly had its effects on cosmetic surgery.

The "lipstick effect", which is a name given to the economic phenomenon of increased sales of lipstick and other feel good products such as cologne and mascara during hard times, seems to apply to cosmetic medicine in particular. The number of invasive procedures performed in 2008 was up 5% compared to 2007.

A large part of this increase was due to people spending less on surgical procedures and choosing minimally invasive procedures instead. The number of surgical cosmetic procedures dropped 9% from 2007 to 2008 and a big part of this was due to the economic downturn.

The overall top surgical cosmetic procedure in 2008 was breast augmentation with 307,000, followed by rhinoplasty 279,000, the third was liposuction 245,000, and eyelid surgery 221,000 and tummy tuck 122,000.

So this is the second year in a row that breast augmentation has topped the charts as the number one procedure. I believe that this is due to the fact that silicone implants have been put back on the market.

Botox continues to lead the pack of minimally invasive procedures with over 5 million injections in 2008. With the recent FDA approval of Reloxin from Medicis , we may see an increase as prices fall and demand will increase.

The second most common minimally invasive procedure was the injection of Hyaluronic acid fillers which was a far distant second with 1.1 million injections; reflecting a 6% increase over 2007.

Overall, women accounted for 91% of all cosmetic procedures performed. One of the most common procedures among men was blepharoplasty or eyelid surgery and that declined 11% in 2008 while rhinoplasty (nose surgery) gained nearly 1%.

Interestingly enough the number of repeat customers or repeat patients in 2008 was up 7%. Office facility procedures were also up 13%. So in general, 2008 was a down year because of the economy.

As the economy rebounds we expect the number of people seeking cosmetic surgical improvement and procedures will increase.

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