Expert comment: Call to tighten breast augmentation procedures

Posted by ap507 at Jun 10, 2015 12:05 PM |
Dr Jacqueline Sanchez Taylor suggests problematic ‘boob job’ consultation process can lead some women to regret decision

Dr Jacqueline Sanchez Taylor from the Department of Sociology is available to comment on breast augmentation and body modification. Contact jst4@le.ac.uk.

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This week the General Medical Council (GMC) announced a call to tighten up the procedure for breast augmentations. The Council wishes to introduce new guidance to give patients time to think about the consequences of having breast surgery.

Dr Jacqueline Sanchez Taylor from the University of Leicester’s Department of Sociology has identified that for women who end up regretting the decision to have breast surgery, the consultation process is a key problem area.

She said: “Women I interviewed explained they felt the consultation process often resembled a sales encounter. Women also told me that they had not really listened to discussions about ‘risks’ or the lifelong implications of having breast augmentation surgery.

“I fully support the recent guidelines suggested by the GMC, but my research suggests these guidelines should go even further. Breast augmentations entail major surgery and we need to question the ethics and consequences of marketing this medical procedure as a consumer product  and turning breast augmentation surgery into such a lucrative business.

“Breast augmentations are often sold as aids to self-esteem and confidence by private sector clinics and imagined as beauty treatments by some of their clients. While some women might take time to consider their options, others make the decision to have surgery with lifelong implications in the context of passing life events (such as splitting up with a boyfriend, or having a first baby), youthful anxiety about a still developing body, or even much the same basis as they might decide to have a tattoo or buy a fashion accessory.”

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