New Report on Dangers of Medical Tourism for Plastic Surgery Underscores the Need for Great Caution in Selecting a Physician, says Dr. J

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Commenting on a recent article, the Beverly Hills-based plastic surgeon notes that trying to save money by obtaining procedures in countries with few patient protections can be enormously costly.

Medical tourism for plastic surgery can be a risky proposition, reports indicate.

The report is another strong reminder of the need to be....especially skeptical about the wisdom of obtaining procedures in nations which may not have the same kind of standards for medical safety as the United States.

According to a July 13 article on Time, a recent report has revealed that some U.S. citizens travelling abroad for plastic surgery have been left with severe infections. The study specifically mentions some 21 Americans who obtained procedures in the Dominican Republic and contracted an RGM (rapidly growing mycobacteria) infection through improper operating conditions. According to Time, the report notes that the condition is marked by “painful nodules that develop into persistent, discharging abscesses.” Beverly Hills-based plastic surgeon Payam Jarrah-Nejad, M.D., F.I.C.S., F.A.C.S., better known to his patients as Dr. J, comments that the report is another strong reminder of the need to be extremely careful when selecting a plastic surgeon and to be especially skeptical about the wisdom of obtaining procedures in nations which may not have the same kind of standards for medical safety as the United States.

Dr. J adds that, while it’s understandable that patients want to save money on procedures, they should seriously consider the possible costs of obtaining a procedure that may not be performed in the safest facilities or by a surgeon whose credentials have been fully vetted by a respected U.S. physicians’ organization. Even if procedures do not result in the kind of serious health problems mentioned in the recent study, he notes that correcting unsightly or painful botched operations can cost many times the amount of a single plastic surgery, not to mention the additional stress, heartache and significant recovery time associated with obtaining multiple revision procedures.

Dr. J also notes that prospective plastic surgery patients very often overestimate how much a procedure with a fully qualified American plastic surgeon will actually cost them. He adds that, in his experience, patients are often pleasantly surprised to learn that they can afford procedures and that cost is rarely determinative of whether or not patients ultimately choose to have a procedure.

Dr. J adds that, even when seeking treatment with physicians in the U.S., it is important that patients exercise some caution. Specifically, he strongly advises anyone considering a procedure to only consider a board certified plastic surgeon for any plastic surgery. Dr. J notes that plastic surgery is among the most demanding and precise medical specialties, and that only board certification ensures that doctors have been judged by their peers to be fully qualified to perform the full range of procedures.

Dr. J adds that, of course, there are many fine plastic surgeons working all over the world. Specifically, such nations as South Korea play host to many truly skilled and experienced plastic surgeons. He also notes that seeking out their services might result in very good outcomes but, for Americans, they are likely to be more expensive than seeking care closer to home.

Readers who are interested in obtaining any kind of procedure for themselves or a loved one are invited to call Dr. J’s office at 310-683-0200 or visit Dr. J is double board certified by both by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and the American Board of Surgery.

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Bob Westal
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Dr. J (Payam Jarrah-Nejad, MD, FACS) Board Certified Plastic Surgeon
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