Plastic surgery: India ranks 4 in world, attracts foreigners

New Delhi: Be it a new mother who wants
to shed the extra flab or a recent collegiate wanting to look
fabulous on campus, more people in India are going under the
knife to enhance their features and get "the killer look",
according to a recent global survey.

Conducted by the International Society of Aesthetic
Plastic Surgery, the survey ranks India as four in the list of
top five countries in the world in the number of people going
for surgical and non surgical procedures to enhance their

The survey included the top 25 countries representing
75 per cent of all procedures performed by board certified
plastic surgeons in 2009.

Also, continent wise Asia leads with 5,704,277
procedures overall followed by North America at 4,155,955 and
Europe at 3,538,319.

"There has been a shift in the perception of beauty
with time. In a competitive world people want to look younger
and fresher and they are opting for procedures that will take
away years from their face," says Sanjay Parashar, a leading
cosmetologist in the country.

"Mummy makeovers" for new mothers,facial rejuvenation,
tummy tucks, high definition liposuction, breast augmentation
and contouring are among the procedures that are quite popular
among clients, he says.

India saw 683,160 surgical procedures in 2009 and
211,540 non surgical procedures totalling to 894,700, which is
5.2 per cent of overall procedures performed in these 25

In the surgical procedures category, Liposuction tops
with total of 1,607,979 people getting the job done in the
world, followed by Breast Augmentation (1,454,317) and
blepharoplasty (upper or lower eyelid lift, 1,153,756).

Indian surgeons performed 117,140 cases of
liposuction, 109,580 of Breast Augmentation, 60,280 of
Rhinoplasty (nose reshaping) and 54,720 of Abdominoplasty
(Tummy Tuck).

United States leads the list followed by China and
Brazil. The top ten includes Mexico at 5th place followed by
Japan, South Korea, Germany, Turkey and Spain. France is at
14th, UK at 17th and Australia at 21st while bottom is
occupied by Portugal.

"We are seeing a lot of people from the US and the
west opting to get their surgeries in India. This may be
because apart from being cheaper we also have a very good
infrastructure and are also good at communicating in English
compared to say countries like China," says Dr Parashar.

Surgeons have also recorded an increase of clients to
India from countries such as Nigeria, Afghanistan and Iraq.

India has 2,000 board certified plastic surgeons
compared to 5,700 in USA, while the total surgeons in the 25
countries is 30,817.

In non surgical procedures for feature enhancement,
Botulinum (Botox Dysport) injection was used for age related
skin ailments in 2,860,238 cases in the world.

Non surgical procedures seem less popular in India as
it features only once in top five in the five different
categories. 74,140 cases were administered with Botox
injections while Autologous Fat Injections were used in 25,860
cases by Indian doctors.

India`s rapid rise in the list is seen due to rich
people`s desire to look perfect and different, according to
psychologist Sanjay Chugh.

"Such people have a negative self-image. They want to
overcome the inferiority complex and since there are options
available to do so, they get their features enhance," he says.

"The trend is mainly restricted to metros like Delhi
and Mumbai as people have money to spend on such costly
treatments," he adds.

Delhi-based surgeon, Sanjay Haldar says he receives
atleast four to five calls for consultations daily which get
converted to 3 to 4 procedures in a week.

"While the middle aged persons want to do away with
ageing like wrinkles, sagging skin, the young see acne, scar
as main problems," he says.

"I also receive calls where people want to have
features like a celebrity and the lips of Angelina Jolie are
one of the popular trends," he adds.

While most surgical treatments are lifelong doctors
say there is no guarantee for changing lifestyles of clients.

"Usually we sit with our clients and make them
understand the downside of the treatments which are permanent,
guiding them to maintain a good lifestyle so that they can
enjoy the results," says Dr Parashar.


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