"Recently there has been a spate of adverse publicity surrounding plastic surgery. The most recent issue that has been raised is the increased use of opiates to the point of addiction correlating with the increased rates of surgery.
This is nothing more than sensationalism. Although in the early postoperative phase as with any surgery pain is a feature often requiring opiates intermittently for relief, the pain from the procedure is relatively mild, say in comparison to hip or knee joint surgery or joint replacement. So why don't we say an epidemic of opiate addiction in this patient group.
Societies where rhinoplasty surgery is amongst the most common procedures in the Middle East such as Iran, Turkey or Lebanon are also not reporting an epidemic of opiate addiction either.
There is no doubt that pain relief medications especially opiates if used inappropriately may result in long term dependence. But does increased rates of rhinoplasty correlate with an opiate addiction epidemic as suggested by this article, of course not that is just sensationalism or better put fake news.
The study is from Boston it has an anaemic total of 173 rhinoplasties that were followed up, a small percentage, 11% got their opiates medication repeat script refilled. The discussion went that over prescribing opiates therefore can result in incorrect use.
All do this a far cry from an opiate epidemic. So to put in perspective a so small study's without adequate follow up that could not be considered authoritative in any way, showing no addiction but that perhaps operates were overprescribed ( not over used by patients). "
Question: Why do you believe plastic surgery such as nose jobs was attributed to opioid addiction?
Dr Ross Farhadieh: There is an impression that over-prescription of opiate medication for pain relief results in addiction. In actual it's very unusual for surgeons to give such over-prescription after an acute surgery.
Question: Why do you know plastic surgery has not driven opioid use up?
Dr Ross Farhadieh: There is no evidence of this; in actual fact the article itself stipulates that there is no causative relationship between opiate addiction and plastic surgery or in this case a specific plastic surgery, rhinoplasty.
Question: What are the detrimental effects associated with an opioid addiction?
Dr Ross Farhadieh: Like all opiates they have many long term side effects in addicts affecting all the physiological systems, from the gastrointestinal system, to musculoskeletal and neurological systems.
Question: Which celebrity noses are most commonly requested?
Dr Ross Farhadieh: Most recently Selena Gomez, Michelle Pfeiffer remains popular, some folks from ethnic backgrounds ask for the Kardashian noses.
Question: What type of plastic surgery is most common, at the moment?
Dr Ross Farhadieh: Its age dependent. Young women rhinoplasty and breast augmentation, Young men, rhinoplasty. Mum's at the end of family planning mummy makeovers (tummy tuck, breast lift (plus/minus augmentation). More mature patients, facelift, eyelid lifts and neck lift surgery.
Interview by Brooke Hunter