This new “condition” has recently been brought to my attention. It is when a patient shows up for a consult and has brought along a picture of themselves that has been altered with a Snapchat filter or altered in some specific way with Photoshop-style editing.
The situation has to be assessed on its individual merits .If someone (usually a woman) comes into my office with a picture showing her lips slightly fuller, what do I think? I have resisted the marketing tool which allows the surgeon to computer program the final result of the patient. The reason that I have strongly resisted this marketing tool is because surgery and cosmetic changes are not an exact science and not 100% totally predictable. I feel that if I give or show the patient a photograph of the final result — even if I tell them that this is just an educated guess — then any shortcoming from that final result will greatly distress the patient, even if they get a very good final result.
The exception to this rule is if someone comes in with a before picture of what their breasts look like now, and also brings along a final result, which states the implant size. This is very helpful, since if I just copy the implant size, the patient should get almost the same result.
However, with facial procedures – whether it is surgery or fillers and Botox – it really depends on the degree of changes they are expecting and how realistic their expectations are. Fillers allow us to build up definite areas of the face. This can also give some tightening to the face (example placing fillers along the zygomatic arch/cheekbone can help minimize the nasolabial folds) or help improve depressed areas or make areas that are too prominent be less prominent, if the areas around them are filled in.
What I look at are the degree of changes the person wants and the intensity of what they want. It is also important to try and discern their motivation for wanting the changes. Sometimes, patients will be quite open with a bit of questioning (my life coaching background is helpful here), that they expect these changes to get their previous boyfriend or girlfriend back or will make them popular, etc. Someone who has seen and been treated by numerous specialists and feels they all have done a poor job is unlikely to be happy with me. Of course, if there are questionable cases, it is best to turn them down or perhaps, refer them to a mental health professional.
In general, I think the Snapchat generation tends to be much too focused on what they want and are owed and much less focused on service and responsibility – but perhaps I am just showing my age!
Have other questions about your cosmetic procedure? Call us at 703-406-2444 to schedule your complimentary, private consultation with me. I’d be happy to answer any questions you may have!