Has any medical specialty been as influenced by the popular culture as aesthetic surgery?
Second only to the media-celebrity influence on patients, this cultural landscape has been impacted by the approval of medical devices and the refinement of techniques which have, as one commentator observed, "made possible both the desirable and the endless."The "retailing" of aesthetic procedures to a broader consumer base — as more practitioners employed less invasive techniques — emerged from who were and how we lived. Culture watchers as "inside" the discipline as ASPS spokesmen predicted that the events of 9/11 would further spur the aesthetic boom as more patients assumed a carpe diem attitude stemming from their fresh recognition of the brevity of life.
The key touchstones within the past decade's aesthetic timeline were the points at which science and society intersected.
Somatic cell nuclear transfer produces Dolly, first genetically engineered sheep
Web site of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, featuring images of the Pathfinder's landing on Mars, becomes most popular in history with over 45 million hits in one week
Mattel manufactures one billionth Barbie
Europeans agree on a single currency, the "euro"
FDA approves Viagra
Former WWF wrestler, Jesse "The Body" Ventura, elected governor of Minnesota
Dow Corning Corporation consents to $3.2 billion silicone breast implant settlement
ASPS reports 132,378 breast augmentations in the U.S. — with 32,262 breast implant removals
Surgeons in Louisville, Kentucky perform first human hand transplant
World awaits consquences of the Y2K bug
Dr. Marlen Sulamanidze develops Aptos, first barbed thread for facial tissue suspension
Nobel Peace prize awarded to Doctors without Borders
Singer Carnie Wilson's gastric bypass surgery broadcast live on Internet
Number of Internet users worldwide reaches 150 million; 50% are from the U.S.
Mad cow disease alarms Europe
FDA approves nonablative laser, NLite, for periocular wrinkles
Tech bubble bursts; NASDAQ drops 45.9% by year end, an estimated $8 trillion dollars of wealth lost
AOL acquires Time Warner
California firm starts eBay-like web site for online auctions of cosmetic and other surgeries
Human genome deciphered; expected to revolutionize the practice of medicine
RU-486 wins FDA approval
Anthrax scare rivets nation
Embyros created at a Virginia clinic to harvest stem cells
Apple launches iPod
Neurotoxin injection procedures top 1.6 million, a 2,356% increase over 1997
Serena Williams defeats her sister, Venus, at Wimbeldon