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Surgeon Dr. Barry Eppley

Posts Tagged ‘discount plastic surgery’

Discount Pricing for Cosmetic Plastic Surgery

Wednesday, May 21st, 2008

A day doesn’t go by in my practice where I don’t get requests for discount pricing for some elective cosmetic plastic surgery procedure. Whether it be by phone, e-mail, internet inquiry, or in a face-to-face meeting with a patient or a chance encounter out in public, the requests to do something for ‘free’ or at a substantial discount are endless. This is not a surprise to me because I am certain this is like a lot of retail businesses…customers always want something for less. Everyone is always looking for the best deal.
On the one hand, I think this reflects positively on plastic surgery in general. People want the services, they want to look and feel better about themselves. On the flip side, however, discount pricing for plastic surgery services is generally not a good idea unless it is an established patient who has ‘earned’ the right to such benefits. People may want plastic surgery services, but they must also place an appropriate value on them. Plastic surgery is not like buying a TV or an outfit, you can’t take it back if you don’t like it. And it exposes every patient to potential complications and side effects…unlike that fflay screen TV.
But, most importantly, discount pricing induces many patients to have procedures that they may not really be able to afford. And what happens if complications occur? Can the patient now afford the costs of treating these complications through more surgery? Every patient needs to consider the potential economic impact of complications in the overall picture of affordability of the procedure. Unfortunately, many patients do not.
Lastly, it has been my experience that discount pricing allows the patient to not value the procedure as much as they should. They expect the same results (in fact, many expect perfection) as if they were paying full price. Discount pricing might not be a bad thing if it lowered patient expectations and required less surgical effort and postoperative care, but it does not. In fact, the highest number of complaints and dissatisfaction with cosmetic plastic surgery in my experience has been from those patients who received a full service at a discounted price.
Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana

The Safety of Plastic Surgery Abroad

Monday, January 7th, 2008

Overseas Plastic Surgery – Is It Safe?

 

I recently was asked to see a patient in a hospital emergency room to take out sutures from a facelift that she had done in Mexico. While she suffered no terrible complications, the cosmetic outcome was certainly not what I would have considered acceptable here in Indianapolis. The incisions were poorly placed around her ears and her hairline had been pulled up high into her temple area.
Seeing her brings to light a somewhat disturbing trend that is evident nationally, particularly in the southern border states, but is also prevalent on the internet as well. The number of patients going overseas for plastic surgery and the solicitation to do so on the internet, promoting low prices and a ‘vacation-like’ experience. Historically, going overseas for surgery is not new but has been done in the past to seek out operations or treatments that were not available in the U.S. This new overseas trend is solely based on discounted price.
Having traveled the world extensively and both met and operated with many international plastic and maxillofacial surgeons, I know there are many fine plastic surgeons around the world doing great work. However, in the interest of saving money, I am amazed how many people would naively disregard some of the basic tenets of choosing a plastic surgeon and surgery center. Important criteria such as board-certification, professional reputation, and the quality and track record of the facility where surgery will be performed can not possibly be assessed without a prior visit or consultation. But these issues aside, overseas surgery brings up several extremely relevant issues that most patients have not even thought of:
1) What happens in the event of a surgical complication? Who is going to take care of it? Fortunately, in elective plastic surgery, this is usually a postoperative problem so you would be home by then. Who would you go to locally? And any plastic surgeon seeing you here is not going to take of for free a complication from someone else’s surgery.
2) In the event of a complication during or right after surgery overseas, will your health insurance provide coverage in a foreign country? Does your health insurance policy extend beyond the U.S. borders?
3) Will you really be saving a large amount of money by going overseas? When you factor in the cost of air travel and local accommodations before and after your surgery, you may not find it such a bargain. Know all costs before proceeding. The ‘sticker price’ may not reflect all costs involved.
While saving money on plastic surgery overseas can be enticing, cosmetic surgery performed by an unqualified surgeon or in a setting that is not safe can risk your health and result in unappealing outcomes. Doing your research is never more important than when you leave the more highly regulated state of medical affairs and plastic surgery in the U.S.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana


Dr. Barry EppleyDr. Barry Eppley

Dr. Barry Eppley is an extensively trained plastic and cosmetic surgeon with more than 20 years of surgical experience. He is both a licensed physician and dentist as well as double board-certified in both Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. This training allows him to perform the most complex surgical procedures from cosmetic changes to the face and body to craniofacial surgery. Dr. Eppley has made extensive contributions to plastic surgery starting with the development of several advanced surgical techniques. He is a revered author, lecturer and educator in the field of plastic and cosmetic surgery.

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