This month, Italy joins the US in banning breast augmentation for women under age 18. It may seem straightforward to people in the United States that a certain level of maturity is needed before a person can decide on life-changing cosmetic surgery, but in many countries there is no restriction on teens receiving breast augmentation or other forms of cosmetic surgery.
The reform comes after a growing number of cases of botched surgeries in the country and is part of a larger program. The government is also seeking to draw up an official registry of patients qualified to perform plastic surgery, similar to the board certification that plastic surgeons undergo in the United States. An official in the government described the current situation as "a Wild West, cowboy style system of plastic surgery for women," and a representative of the Italian Society of Plastic Surgeons said, "too many people carry out these operations without the proper qualifications."
Plastic surgery is a worldwide practice, but in many countries there is difficulty regulating the practice. In Britain, for example, there is no law against breast augmentation for teens, and the growth of plastic surgery procedures has led to some practices engaging in "irresponsible" sales techniques, according to the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS).
In the United States, patients who do their research can be assured of the quality of training received by a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). If you are of age and interested in plastic surgery from a board-certified plastic surgeon, please schedule a consultation with Dr. George Lefkovits in New York.