Research Show Positive Social Aspects of Facial Plastic Surgery

Research Show Positive Social Aspects of Facial Plastic Surgery

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When you consider Cosmetic Surgery, your main goal is to restore youthfulness to your appearance. However, did you know that it also has an impact on how much your peers like and perceive your personality?

Inner and outer beauty converge in a new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Facial Plastic Surgery, which suggests certain surgical procedures can actually increase the perception of your likeability, social skills, attractiveness, and femininity.

The study was conducted with 173 participants at the Georgetown University School of Medicine. They were asked to evaluate preoperative and postoperative photographs of 30 women who had facial rejuvenation surgery between January 1, 2009, and December 31, 2013. The rejuvenation procedures included facelift, upper blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery), lower blepharoplasty, eyebrow lift, neck lift, and chin implant. The 60 photographs (30 preoperative and 30 postoperative) of these patients were split into six groups, each with five preoperative and five postoperative photographs. The same patient’s preoperative and postoperative photographs were not included in any single group to avoid any recall bias. At least 24 individuals rated each photograph for six personality traits (aggressiveness, extroversion, likeability, trustworthiness, risk seeking, and social skills), as well as for attractiveness and femininity. The raters were unaware as to the intent of the study.

The result of the study revealed that of the eight traits evaluated, four traits showed statistically significant improvements: likeability, social skills, attractiveness, and femininity. Trustworthiness showed a slight increase in postoperative photographs, but not enough to be statistically significant. The remaining traits of aggressiveness, extroversion, and risk seeking did not show significant changes.

This proves that facial plastic surgery changes the perception of patients by those around them. Facelifts and lower blepharoplasty were the two procedures that appeared to garner more favorable reviews after surgery. Michael Reilly, MD, professor of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery at Georgetown University and lead author of the study comments on the favorable results with facelift surgeries: “If the corners of someone’s mouth are turned down at rest, they are not going to be judged to be as likeable or as socially skilled since it appears that they are sad or angry. If the cheeks are full and high, they are going to be perceived as much happier.”

Additionally, Stephen S. Park, MD, president of the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, states, “The eyes are one of the first things we focus on when interacting with someone, so it makes sense that this facial feature was particularly influential in participants’ personality perceptions. Eyes are extremely expressive as our primary way of showing emotion and can have a large impact on resting or neutral facial expression.”

According to the AAFPRS annual member survey, facelifts and blepharoplasty were the second and third most requested surgical procedures for women, respectively. Most facial plastic surgeons agreed in the survey that patients seeking eye lift surgery wanted to look less tired.

This study substantiates that not only do patients benefit from personally feeling more confident and self-assured after facial plastic surgery, but also the people around them perceive them more positively?a great, added bonus.

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