How much involvement do primary care physicians (PCPs) have and want with cosmetic surgery? How do their attitudes influence the referral of patients who are considering cosmetic surgery? An electronic survey of all PCPs in Worcestershire was done. Email addresses were identified via National Health Service (NHS) and practice websites. Results were electronically correlated. All Worcestershire PCPs were emailed (189), 69 completed the questionnaire (response rate 37%). NHS rationing was thought too strict (18%), about right (72%) and rarely too lenient (7%). Each PCP saw an average of one to two patients per month. The probability of referral depended on the patient's problem. In purely cosmetic cases, 54% would not refer. Commercial websites were rarely or never recommended. Fewer than 30% were aware of the BAAPS website. PCPs (>90%) wanted to be informed postoperatively about a patient's private cosmetic surgery. Most PCPs had encountered patients with complications after cosmetic surgery and more than half thought this was inappropriate. Thirty-one percent had encountered cosmetic surgery tourists. This study gives useful insights into primary care physicians' attitudes which may facilitate education and information provision. This is the first study to publish primary care physicians' attitudes to cosmetic surgery and the effects on referral.
European Journal of Plastic Surgery – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 1, 2011
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