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9 Lessons from Botched!

Is this collage of eyes and mouth on a different face the New Botched! TV Star?

Possible T.V. Star?

Interested in starring on a T.V. show?

Sounds like fun…unless that show is Botched!. Billed as the reality T.V. show where you can “get your disaster plastic surgery fixed,” Botched! has taken off. Averaging 1.5 million viewers, it’s now in its second season and it has been approved for a third season..

The show gets a variety of patients with challenging problems through its perpetual casting call. (Interested? Email your story and photos to BotchedCasting@evolutionusa.com.)

The Fixers

The two fixers are a board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Terry Dubrow, and a board-certified facial plastic surgeon, Dr. Paul Nassif. Both are masters of the craft.

There’s always drama, and it’s somewhat fabricated. It is, after all, an entertainment show. Dr. Dubrow in particular likes to ramp it up with lines like, “Did I just get into one of her organs?” or “If her implants extrude, she could die!”

This is decidedly not medical school.

Nonetheless, viewers can learn a few things to avoid ending up on Botched!.

9 Lessons from Botched!

  1. Don’t go abroad for your plastic surgery. While there are excellent plastic surgeons south of the border, there are others without adequate training. Patients don’t have the same protections or recourse as in the United States. (Dr. Canales and I could design a show of our own based on patients with botched results from patients who went abroad for their plastic surgery.)
  1. Don’t have extreme plastic surgery. If you get 3,000 cc breast implants, they will deform your breasts. Just because patients find a surgeon who agrees to do the surgery doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. To emphasize that point, the show includes the discussions the surgeon have with patients asking for extreme surgery.
  1. Don’t have cheap surgery. Surgeons who attract patients by charging less than their competitors may be doing so for a reason.
  1. If a good surgeon says not to have a procedure, accept “No” for an answer. Dr. Dubrow and Dr. Nassif sometimes tell patients that further surgery can make a problem worse or won’t deliver the result they’re looking for. Those that say, “Fine, I’ll go elsewhere,” have a good chance of ending up botched. Some surgeon somewhere we’ll agree to do surgery, even if it’s the wrong thing to do.
  1. Don’t have surgery by a cosmetic surgeon who isn’t a board-certified plastic surgeon, facial plastic surgeon (for faces), oculoplastic surgeon (for eyes), or dermatologist (for liposuction). Doctors can legally perform cosmetic procedures even if they haven’t gone through rigorous training.
  1. The Botched surgeons turn a lot of patients away. From this we can infer that not all problems can be fixed.
  1. Local anesthesia may limit what the surgeon can do, compromising the result. Don’t think of it as a selling point.
  1. If you’re worried that you have a complication, but your surgeon says you’re fine, get a second opinion. Some of the Botched! patients suspected they had a problem even though their original surgeon assured them they were fine. If you’re worried, it’s worth paying for a second opinion from a reputable plastic surgeon.
  1. Remember, this is entertainment. Patients don’t die if breast implants work their way outside the body (extrusion).

If you want to star in a T.V. show, it may be better to work on your cooking skills or your singing. But if you’re having plastic surgery, choose a board-certified plastic surgeon, have realistic expectations, and follow your surgeon’s instructions.

You don’t want to star in Botched!

 

 

Dr. Heather Furnas

About Dr. Heather Furnas

Inspired by watching her plastic surgeon father operate in African bush hospitals, Dr. Heather Furnas followed in his footsteps, training at Stanford and serving on the Harvard clinical faculty. She and her husband, Dr. Paco Canales, practice together in Santa Rosa, California, where they raised their two children. (To learn more about their practice, visit www.enhanceyourimage.com.) She believes an informed patient is more likely to be a happy patient and is committed to providing that education. If you have any suggestions for topics you'd like to learn more about, she would love to hear from you!

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