The emergence of a reality TV show dedicated to “extreme makeovers” is profoundly unsettling to responsible aesthetic plastic surgeons whose skill is directed at helping men and women fulfill realistic goals for improving their appearance. As the leading society of board-certified plastic surgeons who specialize in cosmetic plastic surgery, the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) takes the position that good cosmetic surgery is not intended to be “extreme,” to “make someone over,” or to transform someone into a “different person.” On the contrary, as cosmetic plastic surgery has evolved over the years, respected surgeons find that the true art of cosmetic surgery is to achieve the most natural look possible.
Undergoing multiple cosmetic procedures, simultaneously or over a period of time, is not unusual. People today live longer and, increasingly, seek to achieve and maintain an appearance that matches their self-image at every stage of life. A patient who has a strong personal desire for self-improvement and is able to identify specific, realistic goals is likely to be a suitable candidate for one or more surgical or nonsurgical procedures.
Perhaps some of the individuals who participate in this latest reality TV show will, indeed, have realistic expectations about what plastic surgery can and cannot do for them, and will be highly satisfied with appropriate changes that are made to their appearance. However, no one should undergo surgery of any kind without a complete understanding both of the potential benefits and risks, as well as a mature attitude toward the impact of cosmetic surgery on his or her life.
Additionally, it is important when evaluating results not to confuse superficial changes achieved through hairstyling, makeup and fashionable clothing with the results of cosmetic surgery.
A qualified aesthetic plastic surgeon can help potential patients evaluate whether cosmetic surgery is an appropriate choice for them.