INTERNET

Plastic surgery

Authors: Negin Shamsian, Stephen Southern 

Publication date:  16 Sep 2006


Plastic surgery is increasing in popularity, partly as a result of television programmes that have made it mainstream viewing. Any remaining taboos about plastic surgery have gradually disappeared. In the United Kingdom in 2004 the number of cosmetic procedures increased by 18% compared with 2003, to 16 367. Greater interest in plastic surgery is reflected in the 15 million sites worldwide dedicated to plastic surgery; 500 000 of these sites are based in the United Kingdom.

The British Association for Plastic Surgeons, based at the Royal College of Surgeons, is the professional representative body for plastic and reconstructive surgeons in the United Kingdom ( [Link] ). The website gives an overview of the work of the association and also gives authoritative advice on the management of conditions that fall within this specialty. It is an open access site and has been designed to provide information on plastic surgery for the general public, patients, and the medical profession. There is a members only section for trainees and consultant plastic surgeons.

[Link] can be used to find an aesthetic surgeon in the United Kingdom. Members of the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) are fully trained plastic surgeons who have undergone a standardised training programme and are on the specialist register of plastic surgeons maintained by the General Medical Council. It provides reliable information about a variety of aesthetic procedures using an interactive anatomical graphic. It also gives up to date information about the latest press releases and guidelines in the field of plastic surgery.

Written by plastic surgeons, [Link] is aimed at medical students and doctors and covers a huge range of topics. It provides a useful alphabetical resource written by plastic surgeons and covers plastic, reconstructive, and aesthetic surgery. It is useful for trainees in plastic surgery worldwide.

[Link] is top of the search engines list, and its name gives a fairly accurate description. Updated twice monthly with photographs of celebrities who have recently had cosmetic surgery, this site is targeted at the general public. Sensationalist stories of bad plastic surgery are included. Celebrities featured on the site include Paris Hilton, Elizabeth Hurley, and Victoria Beckham. We are presented with surreptitious preoperative photographs and asked to draw our own conclusions. This is more for entertainment value than information. Its sister site is a showcase for “good” plastic surgery ( [Link] ). Good celebrity plastic surgery is cross referenced with information about procedures such as blepharoplasty, liposuction, lip augmentation, face lift surgery, breast augmentation, and rhinoplasty. Detailed information about procedures, average costs, and hospital stay are given. ■

Negin Shamsian registrar in plastic surgery
Stephen Southern consultant plastic, reconstructive, and hand surgeon Wakefield, West Yorkshire  negin@fsmail.net

Cite this as BMJ Careers ; doi: