17 October 2008

Tales from Thailand

Okay so I have a super dodgy internet connection so that has totally blown my blogging plans but I'm going to attempt to get in all I can right now. I spent all day yesterday at Phuket International Hospital interviewing surgeons, following patients around and sitting in on consultations...and I WATCHED A BREAST AUGMENTATION SURGERY. Like not just 'watched', I mean I got in scrubs, stood over this women on a gurney and chatted to the surgeon as he did the operation, explaining every single step in great detail. It was perhaps one of the most confronting and absolutely amazing things I have every done in my life. But...of course....it's all very complicated, especially because it was only 2 hours before that I had met the woman having the surgery. It was very strange to see her lifeless on a table having her breasts basically taken apart and put back together when just earlier she had been choosing which implants she wanted.

I'm not going to give too much away right now as there is a whole article that will be published in the next few weeks but I will say that medical tourism is a very complicated issue. I was blown away by the doctors that I met. They are highly-educated, highly skilled surgeons who are actually caught between a rock and a hard place, trying to cater to the market of foreign patients that are flocking to Thailand for medical procedures but also trying to practice ethically.

All I can say is that I don't know what to say. Still trying to process everything and this has definitely changed some of my views on plastic surgery.

I met a woman who had had lipo, breast life and body countouring all in one go. She wasnt doing it because she wanted to be the hottest mum on the block, she was doing it because she wanted to feel better about herself. It is very easy to judge women who have these procedures as being selfish and narcissistic. When they are sitting in front of you, clearly in pain from having their body parts shifted up and expanded....it's hard to feel anything but sympathy. What I saw in that operating room was intense. I cannot even imagine the pain that this woman will feel when she is recovering for the next few weeks.

On the upside, I got to fondle a big basket of breast implants.

More to come.

Oh, Phuket is beautiful too :-)

1 comment:

Cath @ BumpBaby said...

It sounds fascinating and scary and amazing and overwhelming - all at once! Can't wait to read the article, having struggled with my weight all my life and being particularly unimpressed with it's post-two-baby status. Having said that, I feel more positive about the whole body image thing than I ever have, as contradictory as they may sound... I finally feel in a place to be able to TRY and face up to the why's and how's of my body image, supported enough(amazing hubby), "grown up" enough ;) - but we'll see! Cath

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