Healthcare Business

The Most Popular Plastic Surgeries in America

5. Face-Lift
> No. of procedures: 119,026
> Total expenditure: $764.9 million
> Average surgeon’s fee: $6,426

> Change in prevalence since 2000: -11%

While the number of face-lift procedures has declined by 11% over the past decade, other facial cosmetic surgeries have declined even more over the same time frame. Likely impacted by the success of minimally invasive injections, a face-lift continues to be the best option to remove deep sagging of the skin in the neck and face. Despite the decline, face-lifts have remained the number three plastic surgery in terms of total patient expenditure, and they are the second most expensive plastic surgery procedure overall.

4. Eyelid Surgery
> No. of procedures: 196,286
> Total expenditure: $538.0 million
> Average surgeon’s fee: $2,741
> Change in prevalence since 2000: -40%

Cosmetic eyelid surgery rejuvenates the appearance of the area around the eyes and can make people look more well-rested and alert. However, several minimally invasive procedures can produce the same results for a much cheaper price, including Botox and hyaluronic acid injections. Likely due to availability of these alternatives, eyelid surgery declined by 40% between 2000 and 2011, with a roughly 25% drop between 2000 and 2002, when Botox was approved by the FDA to treat frown lines around eyes.

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3. Liposuction
> No. of procedures: 204,702
> Total expenditure: $585.2 million
> Average surgeon’s fee: $2,859
> Change in prevalence since 2000: -42%

Liposuction is the process of removing excess fat deposit from almost any part of the body. In 2000, liposuction was the second-most frequently performed cosmetic surgery, but it has since been passed by breast augmentation. While the procedure is great for removing fat, it frequently leaves behind excess skin and is therefore being replaced with surgeries that remove both skin and fat tissue in some body parts, including the upper arms, lower legs and thighs. These procedures have become much more prevalent in the past 12 years, with upper arm and lower body lifts increasing from 595 total procedures in 2000 to 22,613 total procedures in 2011.

2. Nose Reshaping
> No. of procedures: 243,772
> Total expenditure: $1,078.0 million
> Average surgeon’s fee: $4,422
> Change in prevalence since 2000: -37%

Nose reshaping, or rhinoplasty, was the most commonly performed plastic surgery until 2004, when it was briefly exceeded by liposuction. As plastic surgeons continue to refine minimal invasive injections to reshape and smooth out facial contours, surgical reshaping becomes less necessary. While previously the only option for reducing a prominent bump on the nose was to physically shave it down, surgeons can now inject small amounts of gels to smooth the appearance of the nose. Nose reshaping is likely to remain one of the most common plastic surgeries, as there is still no other way to reduce the overall size of a nose.

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1. Breast Augmentation
> No. of procedures: 307,180
> Total expenditure: $1,040.1 million
> Average surgeon’s fee: $3,388
> Change in prevalence since 2000: +45%

While most other plastic surgery procedures have become less common since 2000, breast augmentation has risen to the top. Between 2000 and 2007, the procedure was performed 64% more frequently. It dipped nearly 30% over the first two years of the recession, but has been on the rise since 2009. After the introduction of semi-solid silicone gel implants in the late 1990s, complications due to implant rupture virtually disappeared. Additionally, improved techniques have made the surgery an almost exclusively outpatient procedure. Likely related to these improvements, patient satisfaction has increased and reversal, or breast implant removal, has decreased by nearly 50% over the same time period. As of 2011, 5% of women in America had breast implants, including those placed for reconstructive rather than cosmetic purposes.

Baxter B. Allen

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