Thursday, June 26, 2008

Review My Surgery Skillz on YouTube and Get One Free Botox Injection!

Did you hear? Doctors are now offering rebates on procedures for patients who post videos of their prior surgeries (supplied by the doctors, of course) and write glowing accounts of how happy they are with the results. I know we're a Consumer Reports/Amazon Book Reviews kinda culture, but this seems extreme.

First of all, are people actually shopping for surgeons on YouTube? Don't answer that. Every other ad on television and the worldwide interwebs is for some drug to make you happier, thinner, sleepier, etc., so I guess it makes sense that plastic surgeons are jumping on the advertising and viral marketing money train.

Sometimes I stay awake to watch The Golden Girls on Lifetime at 1 a.m. (yes, I know a second episode is on at 1:30, and sometimes I watch that one, too). Let me tell you, there are some super scary commercials that air in that time slot. Last night I was treated to the Ped Egg foot exfoliator ad, in which a parade of satisfied customers slough the nasty dead skin off their feet and dump the shavings into (Unlined! My eyes!) trash cans. But the one that really haunts my dreams is for a local plastic surgeon who offers financing for plastic surgery. "Bad credit or no credit? No problem! We'll still suck out your fat, and we'll charge you loan shark interest rates to boot!" Okay, I'm paraphrasing a little.

Maybe this is what was bound to happen as capitalism, medical advances, beauty obsessions, and a crappy health care system collide. But I really don't like the looks of it.

"Coming Soon to YouTube: My Facelift" New York Times

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