Should Cosmetic Surgery come with a Mental Health Warning?

Taking The Wright Initiative: Therapeutic Support For All

With an increasing number of people seeking cosmetic surgery, the demand for therapeutic support has risen. Pre- and post-operative evaluation is essential in helping the surgeon to assess the Emotional, Psychological & Relational (ERP) wellbeing of the patient.

One group that appreciates the importance of good therapeutic support is The Wright Initiative (TWI). Headed by respected psychotherapist Norman Wright, TWI specialises in offering patients one-to-one support, both before and after undergoing cosmetic treatment. Norman has devised the PaPPS Initiative. Pre & Post Procedure Support.

The goal of The Wright Initiative is a simple one: they believe that every patient should be able to make an informed decision about the procedure they are interested in. This means ensuring that the patient considers, among other things, the impact that cosmetic treatment may have on their ERP wellbeing, both in the short-term and in the more distant future. Is the patient prepared – mentally and physically – for the changes they will experience after surgery?

It is these issues that have impelled TWI to launch the PaPPS Initiative – Pre- and Post-Procedure Therapeutic Support. The programme grants patients the opportunity to obtain reassurance about the procedure and to establish that they are ready for the changes that cosmetic surgery will engender.

The specially-devised programme takes the form of focal sessions that are held in TWI’s Nottingham and Harley Street clinics. During the course of a 60-minute assessment, the patient will attain the peace of mind that comes from knowing that their ERP welfare is being cared for.

The patient feedback on their experience has been positive:

“ My session allowed me the time to reflect and ask myself some questions about what I needed emotionally to get through my surgical procedure and come out psychologically comfortable”

“My PaPPS session made me reflect upon questions I would not have normally asked myself”

“ I welcome PaPPS and feel very strongly that it should be part of everyone’s journey”

For cosmetic surgeons, the PaPPS Initiative is to be welcomed, for it provides an added safeguard, ensuring that patients who elect for surgery are mentally prepared and are comfortable with the decision they have made. Surgeons who recommend the PaPPS Initiative to their patients will be able to demonstrate that they have their patients’ wellbeing at heart and see them, not as clients, but as people with ERP needs. Mr Sultan Hassan of Elite Surgical is working with TWI offering PaPPS as part of the patient journey.

Proper patient selection is an integral part of cosmetic surgery. Because the process is initiated by the patient, it is the surgeon’s prerogative to screen each patient and ensure that they are suited to and ready for the procedure in question. As Adam Searle from BAAPS notes: “Plastic surgeons need to be alert to the possibility that some patients may have an underlying psychological disorder…Ultimately, a reputable practitioner will use his or her best judgment, perhaps in consultation with a mental health professional, to determine whether or not a particular patient can reasonably be expected to benefit from aesthetic surgery.”

BAAPS has gone so far as to issue guidelines for aesthetic surgeons to consider during patient selection. These are designed to help surgeons identify patients who may be suffering from body image issues. A comprehensive checklist enables the surgeon to consider the patient’s physical and mental wellbeing and satisfy themselves that the procedure should go ahead. By offering dedicated PaPPS, The Wright Initiative aims to support both surgeons and patients, making sure that cosmetic surgery is performed safely and with the patient’s best interests at heart.

For more information on The Wright Initiative and PaPPS, call 0115 8890 330 or email [email protected]