Significant Increase in Male Plastic Surgery at Spire Bristol Hospital

17th August 2009

“Man boob” reductions and “nose jobs” top list at South West’s largest private hospital

The number of men booking into a Bristol hospital for plastic surgery is on the rise despite the recession, according to a leading surgeon.

Simon Lee, Consultant Plastic Surgeon at Spire Bristol Hospital, The Glen, said the credit crunch and subsequent economic downturn has had little impact on the male population’s desire to get rid of what they see as physical imperfections.

“In the five years since I’ve been involved in private practice I would say the numbers of men coming to see me for surgery has steadily risen from about 10 per cent up to at least 30 per cent or more of my case work,” said Mr Lee.

“About six months ago when the UK went into recession we saw a slight drop in numbers, but that didn’t last long and now it’s back to being a real growth area for us.”

Rhinoplasty procedures – more commonly known as nose jobs – remain a firm favourite with men of all ages, although another form of surgery, gynecomastia reduction (male breast excision) is not far behind.

“Reduction of male breasts, or ‘man boobs’ as the media likes to call them, has really taken off in recent years,” said Mr Lee, “but in truth plastic surgery of all types is growing in popularity among the male population, of that there is no doubt.”

Mr Lee said there are typically two types of men who come to him for surgery: the ones in their forties and older who wanted to turn back the clock and get rid of things like saggy eyelids and wrinkles, and the younger men who want to correct something they were born with but do not like, such as the nose, ears or chin.

A rhinoplasty will typically set you back about £4,000 and Mr Lee, who has performed plastic surgery for the last 15 years, argues that the procedures are affordable, pointing out that in his experience men were more than happy to tighten their budgets in order to pay for surgery to correct an aspect of their bodies which they have always disliked.

“If someone really wants some work done then the cost is rarely a barrier,” he said, “I get men coming to me from all walks of life, from lawyers to lorry drivers.”

He added: “There are also men out there in the workplace who may be a bit older and feel they need to look younger and healthier in order to compete with their younger male counterparts, so they view plastic surgery as necessary for their career progression and will happily come to me for surgery rather than go on an expensive holiday or splash out on an extravagance.”

He added: “I hate it when people say the word ‘vanity’ when talking about plastic surgery. The key thing is that men these days take more care in their all-round appearance and have recognised the importance of this. Plastic surgery is just one way for them to invest in how they look and vanity really doesn’t come into it.”

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