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Sun. sea and sepsis

Surgery holiday problems up by 30%

London - 21 July 2013 – A recent study by Leeds University into cosmetic surgery holidays revealed a staggering 16.5% complication rate with nearly 1 in 10 (9%) patients needing assistance from the NHS when arriving home. Today, new a survey by the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons ( ) reveals that these problems have been – and continue to be – on a steady increase, with 3 out of 5 (60%) members recording a rise of at least 25%-35% over the last five years.

In spite of Government recommendations for aggressive marketing in the sector be toned down, adverts for ‘summer holidays’ and ‘City break’ discount deals combined with surgery (even offering ‘free flights for multiple ops!’) continue to proliferate.

An internal straw poll of BAAPS members found that:

Over 60% of surgeons reported an increase of 25%-35% in the number of patients seeking help for problems following cosmetic surgery performed abroad.

Between 25%-45% of patients affected were under 30 - a group particularly vulnerable to financial inducements

The top reasons for the complications cited were lack of aftercare and procedures being outdated or poorly performed

Consultant plastic surgeon and BAAPS President Rajiv Grover says;

“Despite the recent study from Leeds University claiming that most patients who elect to travel abroad for cut-price surgery are ‘happy’ with the results, the complication rates do not correlate with the frequency or severity of issues reputable surgeons record here in the UK. At best, patients are forced to assume the cost of additional treatment after returning home from ‘makeover holidays’ as there is usually no aftercare provided – and at worst it is the British taxpayer via the NHS who assumes the cost of righting any wrongs as serious complications can develop weeks, or even months after the procedure.”

A study undertaken in the UK and published in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal established that 90% of cosmetic surgery tourism websites do not publish any information whatsoever about possible risks or complications.

Previous data collected from BAAPS members in 2009:



The BAAPS ( ), based at the Royal College of Surgeons, is a not-for-profit organisation, established for the advancement of education and practice of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery for public benefit. Members undergo thorough background screening before they can join. Information about specific procedures and surgeons’ contact details can be found on the web site, or by contacting their office at 020 7405 2234. Further materials can be posted to members of the public seeking specialised information. BAAPS is also on Twitter:  and Facebook:

For all media enquiries, please contact Tingy Simoes on 020 7549 2863/07973 147388 or email

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