Surgery News & Resources

Cosmetic Surgery Vacations - Pain in Paradise


Cosmetic Surgery Vacations - Pain in Paradise
By Dr. David Goldenberg

(, CT- For years, it has been a common practice to combine an exotic vacation with cheap plastic surgery. The rarely publicized outcome of many such vacations is a botched procedure by a non board-certified, under-trained physician. Unfortunately, many patients who have traveled to abroad with the hopes of saving money on their surgery while recuperating in paradise have found the old saying “You Get What You Pay For” all too true! 

Most foreign countries have lower medical standards and less quality control than the United States. While many patients have successful procedures in such countries, should there be a problem with the specific surgery, the outcome can be devastating and costly.

“In our practice, we’ve seen patients return from one of these trips with serious infections, horrible disfigurements and other life-threatening maladies,” said Dr. David Goldenberg, a cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgeon at Advanced Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery in Ridgefield, CT. “Unfortunately, reversing and repairing these procedures can be extremely painful and cost the patient more in terms of time and money than just seeking out a board certified doctor close to home from the onset.”

Popular destinations for cosmetic surgery tourism include Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Malaysia, Mexico, Philippines, Poland, South Africa, and Thailand. These destinations offer everything from “safari and surgery” to “tropical, scenic tour” vacation packages. Dr. Goldenberg notes specific risks of such offshore offerings include:

  • Vacation-related activities may compromise a patient’s health: Cosmetic surgery trips are marketed as vacations, but vacation activities should most definitely be avoided after surgery so that a patient can properly heal and reduce the possibility of complications

  • Cosmetic surgery is real surgery: Every surgery, including cosmetic surgery, has some risks, which may increase when procedures are performed during cosmetic surgery vacations 

  • Travel combined with surgery significantly increases risk of complications: Traveling combined with surgery increase the risk of developing pulmonary embolism and blood clots and patients should wait five to seven days after body procedures such as liposuction and breast augmentation and seven to 10 days after cosmetic procedures of the face including facelifts, eyelid surgery, nose jobs, and laser treatments before traveling back home.

  • Follow-up care and monitoring may be limited: Cosmetic surgery vacation packages provide limited follow-up care, if any, once the patient returns to the United States. Patients who have experienced a complication may find it hard to locate a qualified plastic surgeon to treat and correct the problem 

  • Bargain surgery can be costly: Patients can incur additional costs for revision surgeries and complications that may total more than the cost of the initial operation if originally performed in the United States

  • Surgeon and facility qualifications may not be verifiable: Cosmetic surgery requires the proper administration of anesthesia, sterile technique, modern instrumentation and equipment, as well as, properly trained surgeons; many foreign facilities are privately owned and operated, making it difficult to check the credentials of surgeons, anesthesiologists and other medical personnel. 

  • Devices and products used may not meet U.S. safety standards: Cosmetic surgery products or devices used in other countries may not have been tested, proven safe and effective, or been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

Advanced Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery is part of Advanced Specialty Care, a multi-specialty medical group that also consists of Head & Neck Surgery, Pediatric & General Surgery, Audiology & Hearing Aid Services, Hand Surgery and Allergy divisions. It is the largest cosmetic surgery group practice in Fairfield County with offices in Danbury, Ridgefield and Southbury. All physicians are board-certified in their respective areas of expertise. Advanced Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery offers the newest methods and techniques for body contouring, including breast augmentation, reduction, reconstruction and lifts, liposuction, tummy tucks, gynecomastia correction, face lift, rhinoplasty, otoplasty, as well as facial injectables, including Botoxâ, Restylane, Radiesse, collagen, among other surgical and non-surgical procedures. For more information, visit  © Copyright by

Stay up to date on Surgery News by subscribing to our FREE Newsletter:

Enter your E-mail Address
Enter First

Don't worry — your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you Newsletter.

For your convenience, we have provided a Google Search box to search for additional Surgery news on the net:


Return to Surgery News Main Page


Contact Us


Thank You for Visiting!