MONDAY, April 11, 2022 (HealthDay News) — Some patients with serious illnesses are having cosmetic surgery to look healthier and be more comfortable in social situations or at work, a small study has found.
Researchers interviewed 12 patients who had undergone cosmetic surgery at the start of or during treatment for conditions such as stroke, advanced melanoma, prostate cancer, advanced cancer of the cervix or thyroid and Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
“Patients with serious illnesses show visible signs of their health problems, which makes them unhappy with themselves,” said lead author Dr. Murad Alam, vice president of dermatology and chief of skin and cosmetic surgery at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.
“Cosmetic procedures that improve appearance make these patients feel better and more confident at a time when they are already going through so much,” he said in a school press release.
The patients’ aesthetic procedures ranged from non-invasive treatments such as neurotoxin and filling injections, lasers, chemical peels, radio frequency devices, dermabrasion and micro-needlinginvasive procedures such as facelifts, liposuction and eyelid lift.
Most said they were looking plastic surgery directly because of their serious illness (75%) or their treatment (66%).
Their reasons included mental well-being, social acceptance, anti-aging, social benefits, and suggestions from friends, family, and doctors.
“After the treatment, you look at yourself negatively in the mirror,” a 34-year-old woman with breast cancer told researchers. “You have no hair, no eyebrows, no eyelashes, nothing. My immune system was very low, so I looked really pale and anemic. It’s like you don’t even recognize yourself anymore. “
Many study participants said the safety of noninvasive cosmetic procedures made them more appealing, according to findings recently published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.
Alam said the findings “could help improve conversations between physicians and patients seeking cosmetic procedures, so they have information about which procedures are safer and more useful for them.”
There is more on cosmetic surgery at United States National Library of Medicine.
SOURCE: Northwestern University Medicine, press release, April 5, 2022
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