Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Ethical Aesthetics & Lifestyle Medicine

I'm sure many have heard of the term "Lifestyle Diseases" - conditions like Diabetes, Hypertension & even Obesity which can be contributed by factors like sedentary lifestyles, bad dietary habits etc.

The term "Lifestyle Medicine" came to mind when I noticed the increasing number of physicians catering to people looking for medical means to "correct" imperfections, be it wrinkles, freckles, love handles, cellulite, flabby thighs (you get the picture). Don't get me wrong, I am not trashing Aesthetic physicians or plastic surgeons; I believe that it is their prerogative to assess and treat these patients if they feel that there are benefits, and I believe that most are ethical & make the right decisions.

However, when I read about things like 'Mesotherapy', 'Carboxytherapy, 'Laser Lipolysis' (not cheap procedures, by the way!), I start to wonder at the true efficacy of using these methods to "treat" patients. The thought of fat being dissolved by lasers/chemicals delivered to the subdermal layers to be subsequently removed by one's own body sounds too good to be true (unless one was living in the Star Trek Universe. I have always wished that we had one of those tricorder devices used by Dr Beverly Crusher in the Star Trek:The Next Generation TV series whereby she could diagnose an illness just by waving one of these thingeys over the affected body part -cool!- but then I digress...).

I hope that these physicians also advise their patients that if they continue with their previous lifestyle habits (not applying sunscreen, not eating right, not exercising regularly), these "conditions" would, more than likely, recur & require more treatments, which means more moolah spent (and correspondingly received) for thought, eh?


teerex said...

my doc did tell me what are the alternatives to getting a mesotherapy. and how the procedure will be carried out. I gave it a thought and decided excercise is a better option. the doc may have lost some income, but definitely gained my respect.

aliendoc said...

teerex: that's great to hear...hopefully, most doctors out there would be giving sensible advice & practising evidence-based medicine...