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Southeast Asia surgeons gather for breast augmentation seminar

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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PHUKET: Bangkok-Phuket Institute of Cosmetic Surgery (BPICS) hosted a breast augmentation seminar and live surgery on July 4 in Samkong.

“We invited our colleagues from Hong Kong and from ASEAN countries Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam,” said Institute Director Dr Witoon Wisuthseriwong, who has more than 13 years experience working at Bangkok International Hospital Phuket.

About 50 participants had the opportunity to discuss approaches and techniques with each other and other experts in the field, including Brazil-based plastic surgeon Dr Ruth Graf via video conference.

In the afternoon, Bangkok Hospital’s own Dr Yu Li gave a live demonstration of the process to determine recommended implant sizes and shapes as well as the subsequent surgery.

Since breast augmentation techniques are well known and fairly standardized, the focus of the seminar leaned more toward the delicate subject of working with the patients to balance their desires with a practical medical approach.

“[The implants] depend on the person’s dimensions, the rib cage, the excess tissues and the tissue elasticity. Some [tissues] are very firm which may make it impossible to extend more,” explained Dr Witoon.

“Girls who have an A-cup or no cup size… they are very hesitant to have the size that we recommend. Mostly, after a while, [they feel they] should have gotten bigger implants.”

Often, women feel they want larger implants than what doctors would recommend for their body type. The doctors carry out numerous measurements and use formulas which, combined with other factors, give women a recommended range of options; but ultimately, the women have the final say.

Dr Witoon explained that the majority of patients who visited BPICS – formerly called the Aesthetic Center – are medical tourists.

“Most of the cosmetic patients here are foreigners. The cost is much less than in the West. Breast augmentation is about one half or one third of the cost in Australia… approximately 140,000 to 170,000 baht, all inclusive,” says Dr Witoon.

The six plastic surgeons on staff employ an endoscope to carry out most of the breast augmentation surgeries. This method enables them to limit the incision to four to five centimeters long, resulting in minimal scarring and quick recovery times.

“A few hours after surgery, the patients can walk around. Most of our patients can go shopping or sight-seeing the morning after checkout,” added Dr Witoon.

Although BPICS offers numerous aesthetic surgical procedures, such as eyelid surgeries, face lifts and liposuction, out of a total of 1,465 surgeries performed last year, 1,032 were breast augmentations.

Like much of Phuket, business for BPICS waxes and wanes with the tourist season. Dr Witoon explained that they have so far treated fewer patients this year than at this time last year. He is unsure of the cause but says the military coup may explain part of it.

— Jeremie Schatz

 

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