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Cosmetic Tourism Costs More Than You Think

With the rising trend of cosmetic surgeries, there is also a rising trend of traveling abroad to save money on potentially dangerous cosmetic procedures done outside the United States. Some patients book flights to outside countries to save some money on surgical procedures. Patients invest time researching countries that provide the medical attention they seek. They book flights, they set aside money for the procedure, often surprisingly small amounts, which should be a red flag. Some medical treatments may need to be done abroad, but others are not required to be done outside the United States. Regardless, patients risk complications when traveling to undergo medical procedures.

What is Medical/Cosmetic Tourism?

Medical tourism is the term used to describe people traveling outside their home country for medical treatment or cosmetic procedures. Cosmetic tourism is the same notion: People willing to travel to undergo cosmetic surgeries, such as facelifts and tummy tucks. People typically will undergo cosmetic or medical tourism for the sole purpose of saving money or in rare cases, to get procedures not offered in their country.

Dangers Involved in Cosmetic Tourism

You do not know the qualifications of the surgeon performing the surgery.

Physicians in the United States who are Board Certified must complete a certified residency and have performed a minimum number of procedures in order to obtain certification. Though this does not guarantee the quality of the surgeon, it is a starting point to research the qualifications of the surgeon. In foreign countries, board certification is not always required, and doctors who do the surgery may not have the proper training or experience to do the operations the patients seek.

You may not be insured

There have been times when patients who have undergone a cosmetic surgery procedure in another country have returned home with surgical complications, which then require patients to be admitted to hospitals to address their complications, due to lack of post-surgical care from the country where the surgery was done. In an effort to save money on their cosmetic surgery procedures abroad, these patients may be facing more charges by returning home to have the proper post-surgery care provided. Insurance will most likely not cover costs associated with surgery done abroad.

Flying can increase blood clot formation, and atypical infections can occur

For those looking to get their treatments done abroad, flying may be the only form of transportation to reach the desired location. Long flights make it easier for blood clots to form, which can result in severe complications. Additionally, atypical infections can occur. Mycobacterium abscessus, or M abscessus, is a species related to the bacterium that is responsible for tuberculosis and leprosy diseases in humans. M abscessus belongs to a family of bacterium that is known for the ability to resist and survive environmental extremes, as well as being resistant to antibiotics. This species has been found to be the most common rapid-growing Mycobacterium in human infection, and can spread within just a few days. This species has been found in areas of soft skin and tissue infections, similar to facial tissue and skin because of the delicateness of that area. Those who don’t have a strong immune system are more likely to risk facing this kind of species when undergoing cosmetic surgery in risky locations.

Post-surgery care may not be administered properly

Patients undergoing surgery typically need to remain under supervision by trained professionals in after-care. Travel constraints may interfere with postoperative care. This means that the after-care, if there has been any at all, may not be complete, and the health of the patient may become more at risk once the patient has returned home. Furthermore, if a patient who has had surgery in a different country has a problem in the United States, they may have difficulty finding someone qualified who will take care of their complication: many US doctors won’t care for a patient who had surgery elsewhere since they don’t know exactly what or how the surgery was performed.

The bottom line for those traveling overseas for cosmetic surgery is the price may be less, but so may be the results.

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At Naples Plastic Surgery, our cosmetic services are designed to contour and enhance your body to help you achieve the body image that you desire. Known for offering among the best facial plastic surgery in Naples, our board-certified surgeons are known as much for their artistry as they are for their surgical skills. We understand that your image is the key to feeling great, so we will provide you with the most reliable advice and services to help make you look and feel your best.

The surgical team at Naples Plastic Surgery has the training and experience necessary to help you pursue your own individual cosmetic goals down to the very last detail, all in a warm, comfortable, and private environment.

Dr. Paul Gardner, MD, FACS is a board-certified plastic surgeon serving Southwest Florida. As one of the leading plastic surgeons in Naples, FL, Dr. Gardner has more than 25 years of experience performing facial procedures including composite facelift, mini facelift, brow lift and skin cancer removal procedures. He also possesses expertise in breast augmentations, tummy tucks, and labiaplasty.

Dr. Leopoldo M. Baccaro, MD received extensive training at the prestigious Houston Methodist Hospital in the Texas Medical Center, where he worked with some of the most well-renowned practitioners in the art of cosmetic surgery. With honors and awards throughout medical school and his residency, Dr. Baccaro earned a stellar reputation for high quality surgical care with both cosmetic and reconstructive surgery procedures.

Dr. Mark Walsh, MD, FACS is a board-certified plastic surgeon serving Southwest Florida. Dr. Walsh participated in the prestigious plastic surgery training program at Duke University. He has also served as an invited reviewer and has provided expert commentaries for multiple surgical journals, including the highly regarded Aesthetic Surgery Journal.

Dr. Andrew M. Bonett, MD specializes in both reconstructive and cosmetic plastic surgery, with specific interests in reconstruction after breast and skin cancers, including Mohs reconstruction. His experience also includes reconstruction following traumatic injuries, body contouring, and general cosmetic plastic surgery procedures.

The plastic surgery process at Naples Plastic Surgery begins with a one-on-one, confidential consultation in which your surgeon conducts an examination to determine which procedures are likely to produce the most robust aesthetic improvements. This includes a comprehensive discussion with you to identify the benefits, risks and costs associated with each procedure. It may be possible to combine a number of surgical procedures into a single surgery if you desire and if your medical condition permits it.

As with any medical procedure, there is no guarantee that a desired outcome will be achieved. There are a number of health risks associated with even minor medical procedures. If you have any health issues or concerns, please feel free to discuss them any time with your surgeon at our Naples’ plastic surgery center.
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Plastic Surgeons | Paul M. Gardner, MD, FACS | Leopoldo M. Baccaro, MD | Mark Walsh, MD, F.A.C.S. | Andrew Bonett, MD

1250 Pine Ridge Road, Suite 101C, Naples, Florida 34108
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