According to Randall Parker, whose blog appears on www.futurepundit.com, the demand for beauty enhancement treatments is growing so rapidly that physicians from other specialties are switching fields to compete against dermatologists and plastic surgeons.

The New York Times reports that dermatologists and plastic surgeons are complaining that physicians from other specialties lack the training needed to properly provide competent service.

Dermatologists and plastic surgeons refer to their new colleagues as “out of scope” or “noncore” physicians, and they object to the intrusion, insisting that aesthetic medicine requires lengthy training.

“Dentists are doing botulinum toxin Type A injections, and urologists are doing hair transplants and vein removal,” says Ellen Gendler, MD, a dermatologist in New York City. “Everyone wants to be a plasticologist.”

According to Parker, physicians from other fields contend that aesthetic procedures, like facial injections and vein removal, are far less complicated and risky than caesarean sections or appendectomies and that the fundamentals can be learned in continuing-education classes. Some of these treatments are not hard to deliver and even a nurse could be trained to do them, notes Parker.

“But I’d be really hesitant to have plastic surgery on my face by someone who until recently was delivering babies or removing appendixes,” Parker says. “Buyer beware. Look up information about malpractice lawsuits. Be careful.”

[www.futurepundit.com, November 29, 2006]