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The “Selfie Generation” Generates Business for Plastic Surgeons



Those glamour shots taken by an outstretched arm and tap of the iPhone camera are driving up inquiries into plastic surgery. In last year’s annual survey by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, more than half of doctors reported their patients told them they sought treatment in order to look better in selfies.

Ryan Heffelfinger, MD, director of the Division of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, explains how plastic surgery has changed since the days of Cher and Joan Rivers and why it is more popular than ever.

He says techniques and technology has improved, it’s safer with shorter recovery times, and is more affordable. “More educated consumers are starting with facial injectables before they even turn 30. The most common procedure for the face is the botulinum toxin injection [botox] to treat wrinkles of the upper face and forehead. It is quick, easy, and the results last from three to five months.”

The most common surgical facial procedures performed at Jefferson Facial Plastic Surgery are rhinoplasties (aka “nose jobs”) and facelifts.

“During the past ten years, rhinoplasty surgery has improved greatly,” he says, noting the use of digital imaging to improve outcomes. “At Jefferson, we have pioneered the ultrasonic bone aspirator to perform precise osteotomies and contouring of the nasal bones.”

In addition, advancements in facelift procedures are helping surgeons achieve far more natural-looking results while minimizing scarring and downtime.