Minimally-Invasive, Facial Rejuvenation Procedures Fuel 5% Growth

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - As economic indicators such as auto, retail, and home sales saw gains in 2012 - so too did plastic surgery. According to statistics released today by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), 14.6 million cosmetic plastic surgery procedures, including both minimally-invasive and surgical, were performed in the United States in 2012, up 5 percent since 2011. In addition, 5.6 million reconstructive plastic surgery procedures were performed last year, up 1 percent.

View the complete 2012 plastic surgery statistics report 

"Our annual statistics serve as a snapshot regarding the plastic surgery industry," said ASPS President Gregory Evans, MD. "For the third consecutive year, the overall growth in cosmetic surgery continues to be driven by a significant rise in minimally-invasive procedures, while surgical procedures remain relatively stable. We are aware, however, that patients who begin with less invasive treatments with a plastic surgeon may opt for more invasive, surgical procedures once required."

Cosmetic minimally-invasive procedures increased 6 percent, with more than 13 million procedures in 2012. The top five minimally-invasive procedures were:

  • Botulinum toxin type A (6.1 million procedures, up 8 percent)
  • Soft tissue fillers (2 million procedures, up 5 percent)
  • Chemical peel (1.1 million procedures, up 2 percent)
  • Laser hair removal (1.1 million procedures, up 4 percent)
  • Microdermabrasion (974,000 procedures, up 8 percent)

Cosmetic surgical procedures decreased 2 percent, with nearly 1.6 million procedures in 2012. The top five surgical procedures were:

  • Breast augmentation (286,000 procedures, down 7 percent)
  • Nose reshaping (243,000 procedures, no change)
  • Eyelid surgery (204,000 procedures, up 4 percent)
  • Liposuction (202,000 procedures, down 1 percent)
  • Facelift (126,000 procedures, up 6 percent)

About Face
Interestingly, facial rejuvenation procedures, both surgical and minimally-invasive, experienced the most growth in 2012. Facelifts and eyelid surgeries were up, while 2012 marked the highest number of botulinum toxin type A (Botox®, Dysport®) injections performed to date. Other facial rejuvenation procedures like soft tissue fillers, laser skin resurfacing (509,000 procedures, up 9 percent) and microdermabrasion also saw sizable increases.

Cosmetic Breast Surgery
Female cosmetic breast surgeries such as breast augmentation and breast lifts (89,000 procedures, down 2 percent) dropped last year, while male breast reduction (gynecomastia) shot up. Nearly 21,000 male breast reductions were performed, up 5 percent.

"Female cosmetic breast surgeries such as breast augmentation, as well as body contouring procedures like tummy tucks, were some of the most popular procedures performed in 2012, although they saw declines," said Dr. Evans. "Facial rejuvenation procedures to eradicate wrinkles, refresh, or tighten sagging skin experienced growth, as more consumers chose to maintain or restore a youthful appearance with these procedures."

Reconstructive plastic surgery, which improves function and appearance to abnormal structures, increased 1 percent in 2012. The top five reconstructive procedures were:

  • Tumor removal (4.2 million, up 1 percent)
  • Laceration repair (291,000, down 4 percent)
  • Maxillofacial surgery (209,000, up 7 percent)
  • Scar revision (171,000, down 2 percent)
  • Hand surgery (123,000, up 3 percent)

Reconstructive breast reduction rates continue to rise, with more than 68,000 procedures performed last year, up 8 percent.

"Although breast reduction has many physical and psychological benefits for women with overly large breasts, obstacles remain in acquiring insurance coverage," said Dr. Evans. "It's promising to see gains in this and other beneficial, medically necessary surgeries."

ASPS members can report procedural information through the first online national database for plastic surgery procedures, Tracking Operations and Outcome for Plastic Surgeons (TOPS). This data, combined with the annual survey sent to American Board of Medical Specialties certified physicians most likely to perform these procedures, results in the most comprehensive census on plastic surgery.

View the 2012 National Clearinghouse of Plastic Surgery Statistics report, a blog post authored by ASPS Public Education Chair Committee Chair David Reath, MD, entitled, "ASPS Annual Statistics-Plastic Surgery in 2012," or to download a "2012 State of Plastic Surgery" infographic

About ASPS

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) is the world's largest organization of board-certified plastic surgeons. Representing more than 7,000 Member Surgeons, the Society is recognized as a leading authority and information source on aesthetic and reconstructive plastic surgery. ASPS comprises more than 94 percent of all board-certified plastic surgeons in the United States. Founded in 1931, the Society represents physicians certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery or The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. ASPS advances quality care to plastic surgery patients by encouraging high standards of training, ethics, physician practice and research in plastic surgery. 

Contact ASPS

Media Relations
(847) 228-9900
media@plasticsurgery.org