Study examines factors that may predict if patients will be satisfied with facial plastic surgery

May 17, 2010

A study of patients undergoing elective facial plastic surgery suggests that older patients and those currently being treated for depression may be more likely to be satisfied with the results of their procedures, whereas overall optimism and pessimism do not appear related to satisfaction with surgical outcomes, according to a report in the May/June issue of Archives of Facial Plastic Surgery.

Almost 12 million cosmetic procedures were performed in 2007, a more than four-fold increase over the previous 10 years, according to background information in the article. "Because more patients choose to undergo cosmetic surgery, improvement of surgical outcomes becomes increasingly important," the authors write. "Currently, there is an emphasis in the plastic and facial plastic surgery literature on surgical techniques to improve surgical results. A relative improvement in surgical outcomes, however, tends to be subjective and patient and/or surgeon satisfaction can be highly unpredictable."

Jill L. Hessler, M.D., of Premier Plastic Surgery, Palo Alto, Calif., and colleagues surveyed 51 patients at one facial cosmetic surgery center between 2007 and 2008. Participants completed a demographic questionnaire, a test to evaluate optimism and pessimism and a surgical outcomes survey specific to their type of procedure (for instance, facelift or nasal surgery). Four to six months later, they again completed the optimism/pessimism and surgical outcomes assessments. The four surgeons at the center were also asked to participate.

Patients who were older than the average age of 53 were more satisfied with their surgical results than patients younger than the average age. This may reflect more realistic expectations among older patients, the authors note.

In addition, those currently being treated for were more satisfied than those who were not being treated for depression. No correlation was identified between a patient's optimism or pessimism at the beginning of the study and later satisfaction, nor did any other demographic factor assessed predict later satisfaction.

Patients and physicians generally agreed with regard to satisfaction, although surgeons tended to be less positive in their assessment of outcomes than were patients.

"The ability to preoperatively identify patient characteristics (psychological, social or demographic) that might impact the subjective perception of surgical outcome and predict dissatisfaction with facial could be highly useful to surgeons," the authors conclude. "Although preliminary, our observations provide insight into these relationships and identify potential associations, which establish a basis upon which future studies can be built. In particular, it will be interesting to design larger scale studies to examine the potential associations between perceived surgical outcomes and sex, education, marital status, depression and/or inclination toward optimism/pessimism."

Explore further: Experts call for higher exam pass marks to close performance gap between international and UK medical graduates

More information: Arch Facial Plast Surg. 2010;12[3]:192-196.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Nasal surgery helps transsexuals

Sep 20, 2007

British scientists say transsexuals undergoing male-to-female gender reassignment report satisfaction with surgery to create a more feminine-appearing nose.

Surgical technique helps to reanimate paralyzed faces

Jul 16, 2007

A surgical technique known as temporalis tendon transfer, in conjunction with intense physical therapy before and after surgery, may help reanimate the features of those with facial paralysis, according to a report in the ...

Recommended for you

Obese British man in court fight for surgery

Jul 11, 2011

A British man weighing 22 stone (139 kilograms, 306 pounds) launched a court appeal Monday against a decision to refuse him state-funded obesity surgery because he is not fat enough.

2008 crisis spurred rise in suicides in Europe

Jul 08, 2011

The financial crisis that began to hit Europe in mid-2008 reversed a steady, years-long fall in suicides among people of working age, according to a letter published on Friday by The Lancet.

New food labels dished up to keep Europe healthy

Jul 06, 2011

A groundbreaking deal on compulsory new food labels Wednesday is set to give Europeans clear information on the nutritional and energy content of products, as well as country of origin.

Overweight men have poorer sperm count

Jul 04, 2011

Overweight or obese men, like their female counterparts, have a lower chance of becoming a parent, according to a comparison of sperm quality presented at a European fertility meeting Monday.

User comments : 0

More news stories

Cancer stem cells linked to drug resistance

Most drugs used to treat lung, breast and pancreatic cancers also promote drug-resistance and ultimately spur tumor growth. Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have discovered ...

Poll: Big Bang a big question for most Americans

Few Americans question that smoking causes cancer. But they have more skepticism than confidence in global warming, the age of the Earth and evolution and have the most trouble believing a Big Bang created the universe 13.8 ...