Why Travel to Mexico for Plastic Surgery?

Christie Auyeung Plastic Surgery, Travel, Weight Loss Surgery Leave a Comment

Beaches, cultural festivals, colonial cities, margaritas…and plastic surgery?

Mexico is a not only a popular vacation spot, but also a top destination for plastic surgery. As part of the booming medical tourism trend, tourists increasingly look to Mexico for combining an exotic getaway and a physical transformation. Let’s take a closer look at the plastic surgery scene in Mexico, and things you should consider if you are thinking about plastic surgery south of the border.

How popular is Mexico for plastic surgery?

According to the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, in 2015, Mexico was ranked #5 for highest number of surgical and nonsurgical cosmetic procedures performed, behind the US, Brazil, South Korea and India. 10% of cosmetic surgery patients in Mexico are from other countries, which is the second highest percentage among countries worldwide. Most patients travel to Mexico from the US and Canada.

Why travel to Mexico for surgery?

There are a number of reasons that people choose Mexico for plastic surgery, including

1. Cost

Plastic surgery is more affordable in Mexico compared to the US. Depending on the doctor, the length of stay, and the procedure, plastic surgery in Mexico can cost about half of what it costs in the US. For example, a face-lift that costs $6,000 in the US can cost $2,500 in Mexico. You could get a $6,000 tummy tuck in the US for $3,000 in Mexico. And a $4,400 nose job could cost you $2,800 if you got it in Mexico. For board-certified doctors and nurses at a fraction of the cost, the affordability of plastic surgery abroad is a huge draw for patients.

2. Quality of Care

Mexico comes in at #8 for highest number of plastic surgeons, with 1,550 accredited plastic surgeons across the country. These doctors are board-certified and qualified to practice surgery. Additionally, there are large hospitals and private clinics with the facilities and equipment to provide top service. Given that you do your research (more on that below), you can receive top-notch medical treatment for a portion of the US price tag.

3. Proximity

Many people traveling from the US like that Mexico is relatively close by, just south of the border. This cuts down on traveling time and makes them feel more comfortable that they are not that far from home.

Most popular procedures

A wide variety of surgical and non-surgical procedures are performed in Mexico.

The most popular procedures performed in Mexico include:

  • Breast Augmentation
  • Weight Loss Surgery
  • Liposuction
  • Eyelid Surgery
  • Rhinoplasty (nose job)
  • Abdominoplasty (tummy tuck)

Do your research

While many patients have returned from Mexico satisfied, there are always a number of risks that come with medical tourism. It’s necessary to take precautions in choosing a surgeon and facility.

Here are some critical questions to ask as you research and make your decision: 

1. Is your doctor certified?

Be sure to confirm that your doctor is licensed and certified by the local board of plastic surgery. A medical degree is not enough, as plastic surgery requires more years of specialization. If your doctor is not board-certified, find another healthcare provider.

2. How familiar is your surgeon with your procedure?

A plastic surgeon gains knowledge and mastery of technique from years of experience performing many procedures. Don’t be afraid to ask about your doctor’s experience. Look for before and after photos and talk to previous patients to get a sense of how familiar your surgeon is with the procedure.

3. Where will the surgery be performed?

Some procedures are performed in hospitals, and some in private clinics. When determining where to have your surgery, your doctor should consider the procedure’s complexity, and any specific health issues you have.

4. Have you been informed of the risks?

Surgery comes with associated risks. An experienced surgeon should have a discussion with you to explain what the risks are, and help you weigh the pros and cons of surgery. If your surgeon claims there are no risks, that is a red flag.

Having plastic surgery in Mexico can be a transformative experience that can provide you with a top-notch plastic surgery experience at a fraction of the cost. But remember, it is also very important that you do your due diligence in choosing a surgeon and facility that is experienced and accredited.

Interested in plastic surgery in Mexico? Contact one of our world-class surgeons today!

Christie is a UChicago grad currently living in the San Francisco Bay Area. In her free time, she enjoys tap dancing, learning to windsurf, and trying new foods.