London — The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons has drafted and submitted a strict advertising code to the Committee of Advertising Practice, asking the committee to institute an ethical framework for the marketing of cosmetic surgery.
Earlier this year, the organization says, a study revealed that half the public in the U.K. suffers from negative body image, and girls as young as age 5 worry about their size and appearance. The BAAPS claims the growing number of ads on billboards, buses and television as well as social media contribute to the problem.
In addition, the association has been concerned about the lack of regulation of dermal fillers, according to the Daily Mail online, warning they could become the next cosmetic disaster after the Poly Implant Prothèse breast implant scandal.
Nigel Mercer, former president of the BAAPS, told the Daily Mail there had been an “inexorable” year-on-year rise in demand for skin fillers. And a 2009 study of cosmetic surgeons found that one in four reported seeing patients who had received botched dermal filler procedures.
The organization says implementing 12 measures they outlined for the committee is the "bare minimum" that should be considered acceptable to help protect the public —particularly the young — from unethical practices and unhealthy psychological repercussions.
"We strongly believe that, in the absence of a complete ban, the above measures in their entirety are necessary to ensure that patients are protected from unethical practices and help protect the young and vulnerable from an unhealthy body image,” says Fazel Fatah, BAAPS president. “To this end, the BAAPS has also recently awarded funds for research into standardizing psychological assessment of all aesthetic plastic surgery patients."
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