While the economy partly has been in a recent downturn, partly driven by higher gas prices (amongst many issues), there is no certainty as to how far south it may go. Where it stays as it is today or gets worse in the next 6 months is impossible to predict. What is possible to predict is that plastic surgery business is down and will continue to be so for awhile. Since cosmetic plastic surgery is completely elective, it is a luxury item that can wait for another day.
But my observation has been that the demand will not change, just the timing and amount of service. People still want change in their face and bodies and most people still want to look their best and fight father time and mother nature. So bigger more expensive surgeries will be put off, but not forever cancelled. I have a few patients every week that talk about ‘doing it later in the year’, probably after the national election, but they are definitely going to do it at some point. For those patients who have saved for the procedure or have a good amount of disposable income, they will go ahead and schedule now. Others choose financing their procedure and the concept of low monthly payments may make them more recession-proof.
One aspect of plastic surgery that is likely not to be affected are the office-based procedures. Botox, injectable fillers, and medical skin treatments have not changed in numbers in my practice nor do I expect them to be. In fact, we may see a temporary increase in demand as the economy is down as patients will do smaller, less costly procedures in lieu of surgery.
Dr. Barry Eppley