The Dangers of Cosmetic Surgery Tourism

Last week on the Plastic Surgery Today radio show, Dr. Schwartz and Jasmine talked about the dangers of medical tourism. It tells the story of Agustin Huerta who posed as a plastic surgeon and “botched dozens of facelifts, liposuctions, breast implants and other procedures.” Some of his former patients are permanently deformed.

Clinics in Mexico, central America, eastern Europe, or southeast Asia are all marketing aggressively for American cosmetic surgery patients. Before you get lured into one of their cosmetic surgery vacations consider a few things:

• In many cases you won’t know who your doctor is – let alone what his credentials or track record are.

• Follow-up is non-existent or, at best, inconvenient and expensive.

• If something goes wrong, you’re on your own.

• Most U.S. insurers won’t cover you for complications of cosmetic surgery performed abroad. You will pay for corrective surgery, hospitalizations, medications, etc. out of your own pocket.

• In most of these countries, you will have no legal recourse for complications or problems.

The risks and inconveniences of cosmetic surgery tourism aren’t worth the savings. By the way, after you add in the travel expenses and lost time, the savings usually aren’t all that much for most plastic surgery procedures.