UAE. A leading physician in the UAE has called for more education to be offered to the public about cosmetic surgery. Dr Jeehan Qadir, Executive Chairperson of the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery Hospital based in Dubai Healthcare City believes there is a lack of understanding about all aspects of what cosmetic surgery involves.
“We have an educational department here because unfortunately people in the Gulf are not educated in cosmetic surgery like people outside the Middle East. People in the West are more educated although they do less surgery,” she said. “Our responsibility, as medical professionals and as a recognised hospital is to educate the public about quality; how to choose the right physician, the right product and when to do it. It’s about supplying full information about the product, the surgery and the procedures,” she added.
Dr Qadir also welcomed the recent crackdown on several cosmetic surgeries in Dubai. It followed the death of a 27 year old Emirati woman earlier this year who was receiving liposuction at a clinic in Dubai. Several people are now facing charges of malpractice.
“It didn’t surprise us. It’s a big problem. Products that haven’t been FDA or Ministry of Health approved are widely used,” she said. “We see the complications here,” she added.
Dr Qadir indicated that stricter regulations are required, something the authorities are currently addressing, but she reiterated that a better understanding on the side of the public is also needed.
“Be wise about your beauty. If you are really educated doctors will respect you,” she said. “Even if there are medical professionals who want to cheat which happens everywhere, this will tell these doctors that they can’t cheat,” she added.
The American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery Hospital opened its doors earlier this year, and Dr Qadir said she was surprised by the level of demand witnessed so far. She attributed this interest to the market for anti-aging products and procedures available.
The anti-aging business is now a multi-billion dollar global industry, and a key facet is the demand for elective procedures. For this there has to be a high level of liquidity, something the UAE and the countries in the gulf in general has in abundance.
This is why there has been a huge rise in the number of cosmetic surgeries opening their doors, and particularly in the UAE. The boom in the anti-aging industry in the region has prompted IIR Middle East to organise a conference in conjunction with Euromedicom to investigate the issues relevant to the sector. Sietske Meerloo, Marketing Manager at IIR indicated that the International Congress in Aesthetic, Anti-Aging Medicine & Medical Spa (ICAAM) will address various aspects of this unique arm of healthcare.
“The Middle East is expected to continue to witness growing demand for anti-aging products and services and this is attracting an increasing number of physicians opening clinics, and medical tourists visiting the region,” she said. “To keep pace with these developments questions are being raised relating to legislation and regulations, insurance and making sure clinicians have a comprehensive understanding of all the latest techniques. That’s why ICAAM has been created,” she added.
The inaugural International Congress in Aesthetic, Anti-Aging Medicine & Medical Spa will take place at the Bustan Rotana Hotel in Dubai from 29 November to 1 December.