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Is it safe to get plastic surgery during a pandemic? ‘Botched’ star Dr. Terry Dubrow answers

By Camille Santiago Published May 18, 2021 4:52 pm

By now we’ve become accustomed to sitting on video calls and looking at the person we’re talking to for hours. Some, however, can't help but stare at their own faces during these calls. And the more they do it, the more they start to notice things—things that not even the most expensive skincare product can fix.

The fact is, a lot of people are making appointments during the pandemic for cosmetic surgery. According to Dr. Terry Dubrow, an American plastic surgeon and TV personality, “there’s a giant demand” in surgeries since the pandemic eased a little.

“It’s now opened up to a whole new population of people who are now noticing changes that they wouldn’t have noticed before because they’ve stared at themselves on computers all day long,” the Botched star told PhilSTAR L!fe in an exclusive interview.

So, if you’re torn about whether you should get under the knife or not during this pandemic, keep reading to get some insights from Dr. Dubrow.

[The pandemic has] now opened up to a whole new population of people who are now noticing changes that they wouldn’t have noticed before because they’ve stared at themselves on computers all day long.

How has cosmetic surgery changed over the years?

Cosmetic surgery has really changed. Firstly, obviously beauty trends have changed. So where before it was all about being thin and having a small buttock, now we have small waists, big buttock, big hips.  

What are the cosmetic surgery trends for 2021?

The trend we’re seeing now is a lot of procedures designed to make changes on the outside without cutting people open. So that’s introduced a whole bunch of new procedures that aren’t tested and are almost in the experimental phase. And, unfortunately, it's overlapping with this new pent-up demand for plastic surgery both from people who haven’t been able to do things because of the pandemic, and also the new population of people who have been staring at themselves on Zoom for all these months. So, it’s a weird mixing of new procedures that aren’t tested, and all these people desperately wanting to do stuff right now. It’s a very, very dangerous time to potentially have those new procedures—you must be very careful.

What advice do you want to tell everyone before doing cosmetic surgery? Is it safe to have one during the pandemic?

I think it’s safe now certainly in the US, but number one I would say get your vaccine. Number two, just like always, make sure you go to a fully qualified and certified doctor, make sure you see two or three, make sure you really understand what the complications can be, because they do happen. Number three, finally, slow down and take a moment. Because you have the rest of your life in front of you, don’t make any rash decisions. Don’t go in and meet someone and have the procedure done the next week. Take a pause, sleep on it, and then sleep on it again, and then think about it again. And then if you still want to do it after that careful evaluation then tread carefully and go ahead.

How much of a difference can cosmetic treatment make to a patient?

If you do plastic surgery for the right reasons, you pick the right doctor, you’re in the right state of mind, you don’t run into a complication—let’s be honest, it can be one of the best things you can ever do in your life. It can be life changing, it can change the way you feel about yourself. And there’s no question that when you look at psychological studies and a person has had a positive cosmetic impact on themselves it makes a giant—in many cases—positive psychological impact. I don’t want to sound trite or glib but sometimes it is “happiness with a scalpel.” It really can induce people to live better, longer, fuller, happier lives. Just as long as it’s done for the right reasons and not abused.

How is Season 7 going to be different compared to the other seasons of Botched?

Season 7 has a bit of a different look because not only are we doing the usual plastic surgery cases that are very difficult, but we’re doing different kinds of problems all over the body. For example, a gentleman basically has a shark bite where half of his abdomen, his side, is missing. There is a woman who had a tumor, in childhood, removed, and then had tissue taken from her back and placed on her ankle that has grown. And now she has basically two giant feet on one foot. So that’s a new kind of problem we’ve never seen or heard of before. And the plastic surgery complications we were following were getting much worse because of the pause of the pandemic. So, it’s a much different looking season, with different kinds of surgery, which is very, very interesting.


Botched Season 7 will be available to stream & download on hayu from May 19.