According to a survey conducted by Which?, only one in eight patients in the UK consult their general practitioner (GP) before deciding to have aesthetic surgery or treatments. Plastic surgeons say that although the aesthetic surgery industry will increase 110% by 2012, the lack of user-friendly advice poses a serious problem.

The results of the research show that only 15% of patients who were planning surgery, and 11% of those who had already had it, had consulted their GP. Patients said that they asked friends and family or relied on the Internet and magazines for information about the procedure or treatment they were planning to have.

Of those who did visit their GP, four in five found it helpful and three in four found the advice balanced. Of those who had visited their GP and then had surgery, three in four said their GP’s advice proved to be accurate.

When those who had not chosen to visit their GP were asked why, reasons included negative experiences with their GP in the past or even being told by others that it would not be helpful.

[Medical News Today, May 19, 2007]