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Top Trends in Plastic Surgery as Post-COVID ReOpenings Continue

Top Trends in Plastic Surgery as Post-COVID ReOpenings Continue

American Society of Plastic Surgeons predicts new industry trends amidst COVID-19 reopenings

As the COVID-19 pandemic has changed how plastic surgeons will care for patients and how they operate their practices, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) recently conducted a member survey to understand what procedures were top of mind among patients to gauge whether the public’s mindset on preferred treatments has shifted.

While practices were closed, plastic surgeons continued to stay in touch with patients via virtual visits. ASPS measured the performance of telemedicine and found that most members sought technology to connect with clients.

  • 64% of respondents had seen an increase in their telemedicine consultations since before COVID-19 began
  • 68% of respondents started seeing patients virtually because of COVID-19.

ASPS member surgeons formulated the following early predictions on top 2020 procedure trends as in-office visits safely resume for patients, doctors and staff. Insights were gathered from more than 350 members and were based on what members learned from patients via telemedicine appointments.

Injectables were the most asked-for treatments, followed by more invasive procedures.

1. Botulinum Toxin Type A – 65%

2. Breast Augmentation – 44%

3. Soft Tissue Fillers – 37%

4. Liposuction – 30%

5. Abdominoplasty – 24%

The continued interest in plastic surgery procedures during the COVID-19 pandemic suggest patient confidence in the speciality and its board-certified plastic surgeons to reopen and resume procedures safely. This aligns with findings from an ASPS national consumer survey released in May, which revealed an overall positive attitude towards plastic surgery procedures even among those who are interested but have not undergone procedures before.

Building upon that trust, following stay-at-home orders and CDC guidelines, ASPS convened plastic surgeon working groups to issue guidance regarding COVID restrictions, elective surgery, and safe resumption of surgery. “The early signs of patients’ confidence in resuming procedures with our trusted members is a testament to why we do what we do,” said ASPS President Lynn Jeffers, MD, MBA, FACS.

From this survey, results show patients continue to be interested in pursuing major surgeries and that the general interest has not changed in the type of procedures and operations from the Society’s pre-pandemic statistics.

ASPS 2019 Top Procedures

Top 10 Cosmetic Surgical Procedures

While ASPS anticipates a decrease in the total number of cosmetic procedures in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Society forecasts strong demand for treatments as practices reopens for in-office procedures. The number of cosmetic surgical procedures remained steady in 2019 vs. 2018 with 1.8 million surgical procedures performed, and six of the top 10 procedures focused from the neck down.

The Top 10 cosmetic surgical procedures performed in 2019 were:

1. Breast augmentation (299,715 procedures)

2. Liposuction (265,209 procedures)

3. Eyelid surgery (211,005 procedures)

4. Nose reshaping (207,284 procedures)

5. Facelift (123,685 procedures)

6. Tummy tuck (123,427 procedures)

7. Breast lift (113,188 procedures)

8. Dermabrasion (77,366 procedures)

9. Neck lift (54,852 procedures)

10. Breast reduction (46,340 procedures)

Top 5 Cosmetic Minimally Invasive Procedures
In 2019, minimally invasive cosmetic procedures grew at a slightly higher rate than surgical procedures, and the total number of procedures increased for the third year in a row. 2019 marked the highest number of Botulinum toxin type A injections to date with over 7.69 million injections, and facial rejuvenation procedures are not showing signs of slowing down in 2020.

Among the 16.3 million minimally-invasive cosmetic procedures performed in 2019, up 2 per cent compared to 2018 data, the top 5 were:

1. Botulinum toxin type A (7.69 million procedures)

2. Soft tissue fillers (2.72 million procedures)

3. Chemical peel (1.38 million procedures)

4. Laser hair removal (1.0 million procedures)

5. Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) treatment (685,755 procedures)

“Injectable use is now a part of our cultural conversation, thanks to the average patient seeing the benefits of natural results from the advancements in technique and products that allow plastic surgeons to individualize their recommended treatments to what each patient needs,Dr Jeffers commented.

Top 5 Reconstructive Procedures
Nearly 6 million reconstructive procedures were performed in 2019. Tumour removal is by far the most common reconstructive procedure with approximately 4.4 million procedures performed.

The Top 5 Reconstructive Procedures that were performed in 2019 were:

1. Tumour removal (4.4 million procedures)

2. Laceration repair (249,171 procedures)

3. Maxillofacial surgery (207,862 procedures)

4. Scar revision (181,132 procedures)

5. Hand surgery (141,139 procedures)

Although not within the top five, breast reconstruction saw a significant 5 per cent year-over-year jump, a greater increase than any of the top five reconstructive procedures. “Some of the newer techniques have encouraged women to have breast reconstruction who might not have chosen it previously or may not have been good candidates for the procedure in the past,” Dr Jeffers said.


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