Smart-Lipo, Thread-Tox and the Lunchtime Lift are just a handful of branded procedures that are heavily promoted on television, in magazines and on the radio. These procedures are often marketed to baby boomers and young mothers who are considering plastic or cosmetic surgery to enhance their appearance, and appear to be effective procedures backed by clinical studies. Still, experts say that consumers need to exercise caution when considering these procedures, even when the procedure or treatment is boasts a registered trademark or its own logo.
According to a recent article in MedicalNewsToday.com, brand name procedures may not really provide a legitimate solution for long-term results, and may just be a clever marketing ploy for the vulnerable consumer. Dr. Al Aly, a plastic surgeon in Iowa, points out that "These named procedures are used by the marketing entity to popularize the technique so that patients ask for it whether it fits their situation or not. This is a problem that can be very dangerous." (Source: MedicalNewsToday.com)
So how does a consumer find out if the procedure really does hold up to its name, or if it’s just a scam? Doing some online research about the procedure is the first step to finding out what the history of the technique and surgery is, and how long it has been available in the United States. The next step is to visit the website of the company behind the procedure and review any clinical studies or reports that back up the procedure’s claims. When it’s time to meet the doctor for a consultation, the consumer will be well-armed with knowledge and facts, and can then ask questions about the safety and efficacy of the procedure.
Plastic and cosmetic surgeons are required to disclose all risk factors involved with various procedures, but it is ultimately up to the patient to learn about the treatment and determine if the procedure is the right fit for them.