Nip Tuck Uptick

Plastic surgery is up—and maybe the economy is, too
istock

The recession is over. At least it is according to plastic surgeons who say that if the number of surgeries on the books is any indication, the doom and gloom of the past three years have finally come to an end. Dr. Stephen Finical of Charlotte Plastic Surgery says November 2008—the peak of the economic crisis and when Wachovia had its meltdown—was the slowest his practice had been in a decade. “People were scared,” he says. “They were calling and canceling surgeries. Even if they had money in the bank, they didn’t know if they’d have a job.” But, he says, things slowly started to turn around in spring 2009, and by the end of last year surgeries were up more than 12 percent for CPS. (Face-lifts are up a whopping 46 percent in 2010 from 2009.) Diana*, a nurse at CMC, says she was ready to have a tummy tuck three years ago, but the recession frightened her. She got a second job, saved up, and finally had the surgery in March. The recession, she says, was just an unexpected delay that offered a lesson: curb her spending habits and save. She’s now saving for a breast lift. A sign that the economy has turned around? Plastic surgeons like to think so.

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