Most plastic surgery patients are not wealthy, despite the stereotype. At one time it seemed to be the indulgence of a wealthy or famous few, but that is long in the past.
So I am conscious that the cost of surgery is important to the patient and may play a role in decision making. Financing through one of several companies or through your bank may be an option.
The costs of surgery which you pay are referred to as fees, not as prices. What you pay is a total of all the costs, of which the surgeon’s fee makes up only part.
- Facility fees (The surgery centre charges)
- Anaesthesia (The specialist sedating or putting you to sleep)
- Implant costs
- Overnight facility costs
- Taxes (GST only at this time)
- Pre-operative lab testing etc, and if required, a physical done by your personal doctor (GP)
What you pay will vary from surgeon to surgeon, from procedure to procedure, and from facility to facility.
Breast augmentation is different depending on what type of implants are used, and breast augmentation is different from augmentation with breast lift. Both may be referred to as breast enhancement but the time involved and therefore the costs are quite different.
When I sit assessing a facelift patient or a rhinoplasty patient I need to decide what I will need to do in order to deliver the kind of result both the patient and I are expecting.
This is quite different from one patient to another and is the reason why we read treatment must be individualized in one article after another in our plastic surgery journal articles written by experienced surgeons. There is no “cookie-cutter” approach. One patient may have very loose skin with heavy jowls, another severe neck muscle band prominence, another with excessive deposits of fat under the chin. The time involved depends on what series of manoeuvres need to be put together to make up that patient’s facelift.
A Facelift Programme may involve:
- Fat harvest by liposuction from the abdomen or elsewhere
- Fat injections to lips, cheek folds, cheekbone, eye region etc
- Liposuction or surgical removal of fat from the neck and chin
- Varying incisions from the temple around the ear and into the skin behind the ear, possible incision under the chin
- Skin and deep layer freeing and tightening
- Muscle partial division and tightening
- In addition, we may also do browlift in one of a variety of ways, eyelids in one of a variety of ways, lip augmentation in one of a variety of ways, chin augmentation, earlobe reduction, or other variations and additions
For this reason my facial rejuvenation fees vary considerably, perhaps more than in some other procedures. We try not to but often will suggest what makes up the big picture so that the patient can decide for himself or herself.
The B.C. Medical Services Plan does not cover surgery for cosmetic reasons. There are exceptions to this that are best explained in a consultation with your surgeon.
Some private payers or personal extended benefit plans are helpful in offsetting the cost of cosmetic surgery.
Our office offers a variety of options for payment and financing of cosmetic procedures. Payment options include personal cheque, debit cards, Visa, and Mastercard. We also offer financing via iFinance Canada (Medicard).
Is Cosmetic Surgery Tax Deductible?
Cosmetic surgery may be seen by the Canada Revenue Agency as not tax deductible or may be partially deductible under certain circumstances. You are best advised to check with your accountant for a professional opinion on this matter. Provincial sales tax which was previously applied is no longer applicable. Currently, only the GST applies to cosmetic surgery.
Should I do a little? Or should I have a major procedure? Which is best?
Sometimes patients are surprised by the cost of surgery, and this can be either that it is less than or more than what they thought. When compared to the cost of a Botox® injection and a moderate injectable filler, the cost may seem high. Sometimes “mini” procedures, laser treatments and rapid recovery processes may seem like a bargain. As usual, if it seems to good to be true, it likely isn’t.
While lesser treatments may have times when they are appropriate and may give some satisfying results, they aren’t comparable. No workout routine will restore the position of the abdominal muscle after pregnancy, if they have been separated. No filler and Botox® combinations can imitate the change nor the long term benefits of a facelift when it is appropriate. Nor is a Botox® treatment a substitute for a well done endo-brow lift with division or removal of some of the very muscles which are paralyzed temporarily by Botox®.
There are patients who would never want to have surgery. They may in error think surgery is too drastic, too risky or for reasons of simply being afraid of going under the knife cannot accept a surgical treatment as being for them. There is nothing wrong with this attitude and they are perfect patients for ongoing treatment with injectables. I have patients in my practice who have been visiting my injections nurse for years and never contemplate moving on to surgery.
There are also patients with the opposite attitude. For them, spending money every six months for injectables and having ongoing treatment is exactly what they do not want. They look at five years worth of injections and would rather have surgery and move on with their lives. For them, surgery is a better investment in themselves.
We try to offer appropriate treatments for both.