Richmond’s Nasal and Facial Plastic Surgery Specialists

Trends in facial plastic surgery: social media, ethnic population increase


Reliance on social media,  decreasing costs, and an  increase in ethnic populations are just some of the interesting trends reported by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS) in January 2012. While certain results were surprising, other findings reinforced the steady popularity of procedures and treatments such as Botox, laser resurfacing, filler injections, facelifts, rhinoplasty, and blepharoplasty.

More patients—42 percent in 2011 versus 29 percent in 2010—sought out social networking sites, rather than friends, for advice and information on facial plastic surgery before choosing a procedure in 2011. At the same time, the percentage of patients who obtain information on plastic surgery from friends dipped to 48 percent, down from 63 percent in 2010.

“We are encouraged by the possibilities that Facebook, Twitter, and other social channels offer for prospective patients, but urge all patients to exercise caution in researching facial plastic procedures to ensure information is from a reliable source,” states Tom D. Wang, MD, president of the AAFPRS. Beware of misinformation and consult a facial plastic surgeon who is qualified, experienced, and trained in performing facial plastic procedures.

Reversing a trend in past years, the average costs of both surgical and non-surgical procedures decreased in 2011. Non-surgical procedures performed remained steady, but continued to outnumber the amount of surgical procedures performed. The survey results also showed that 63 percent of procedures performed were cosmetic versus reconstructive procedures.

An interesting finding, surgeons reported that 70 percent of their patients request procedures by describing the area of concern rather than requesting a specific product or procedure by name. The most common non-surgical procedures  last year were Botox and hyaluronic acid injections. Rhinoplasties, ablative skin resurfacings, blepharoplasties and facelifts topped the list of surgeries.

For the third consecutive year, women outranked men in every category for both surgical and non-surgical procedures except for hair transplants. Age influenced surgery selection.  Women under the age of 35 opted for less invasive procedures; the most common were Botox injections, hyaluronic acid injections, chemical peels, and microdermabrasion. Women between the ages of 35 and 60 most commonly underwent blepharoplasty, Botox, brow lifts, facelifts, filler injections, and chemical peels.

Facelifts, blepharoplasty, ablative skin resurfacing, rhinoplasty, and lip augmentation were the most common surgical procedures performed on women overall; while Botox, hyaluronic acid injections, and microdermabrasion were the most common non-surgical procedures in women overall.

Rhinoplasty continued to be the most common surgical procedure performed on both women and men under the age of 35. Both men and women between the ages of 22 and 34 underwent the procedure the most of all age groups, with the average percent of rhinoplasties up two percent for this age group from the previous year.

In addition to rhinoplasty, the most common surgical procedures for men were revision surgeries, hair transplants, and blepharoplasties. Botox, hyaluronic acid injections, microdermabrasion, and calcium hydroxyapatite filler were the most common non-surgical procedures performed. For men under 35, otoplasty and chin augmentation were the most performed surgical procedures after rhinoplasty.

Over 25 percent of the surgeons have seen an increase in the ethnic populations in 2011, with the number of Caucasian patients topping the list, increasing 37 percent from 2010. There was also an increase in Hispanic, Asian American, and African American patients in 2011. Of the four different popular cosmetic surgeries, African Americans and Hispanics were most likely to have received rhinoplasty (88 percent, up 10 percent from 2010 and 67 percent respectively). Asian Americans were most likely to have received blepharoplasty (56 percent) or rhinoplasty (35 percent); while Caucasians were more likely to get rhinoplasty (41 percent) followed by facelifts (34 percent).

If one of these procedures has peaked your interest, your first priority should be to trust your face to a facial plastic surgeon—one who is qualified, trained, and experienced in the face, head, and neck area. Research your options and schedule a consultation; your surgeon will evaluate your face and recommend a treatment plan based on your needs.


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