Ethics in Cosmetic and Reconstructive Plastic Surgery
The status of plastic and reconstructive surgery is debated in the legislative and health policy domains, where the view of plastic surgery as a consumer good vies with the special status of medical procedures; in the social and cultural arenas, where distributive justice is questioned and standards of beauty examined; and in the realm of technology, where new tools and approaches continue to revitalize this ancient practice. This month’s contributors take on each of these debates and more.
Is it ethical to create and advertise, either publicly or during office visits, package deals that offer patients an incentive to have procedures they are not already seeking and might not have considered?
Some question whether plastic surgeons bear responsibility for promoting suspect norms of beauty, given that certain types of cosmetic enhancements reinforce common conceptions of normality that are harmful to society.