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Online Review of Cosmetic Breast Surgery Extends to Surgeon, Staff

Communication with surgeon, interactions with office staff also mentioned in reviews

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FRIDAY, May 4, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Good cosmetic results are not the only factor mentioned in online breast augmentation reviews of plastic surgeons, according to a study published in the May issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

Robert G. Dorfman, from Northwestern University in Chicago, and colleagues assessed measures of satisfaction and dissatisfaction among the top 10 to 20 most reviewed plastic surgeons in each of six large metropolitan areas. Breast augmentation reviews were obtained from Google, Yelp, and RealSelf (1,077 reviews).

The researchers found that ratings were distributed bimodally, with peaks at five stars and one star. The vast majority of reviews (87.5 percent) were positive. Across geographic regions the relative popularity of Google versus Yelp varied. Average rating varied by platform. The number of online reviews for breast augmentation grew at an average rate of 42.6 percent per year between 2011 and 2016. Reviews most commonly mentioned aesthetic outcome (69.8 percent of reviews), while cost was infrequently mentioned (7.8 percent of reviews). Patients who did not actually undergo surgery wrote a substantial minority of negative Yelp (37 percent) and Google (9.4 percent) reviews.

"We found that patients will write negative reviews without ever having had the surgery," a study coauthor said in a statement. "It's not just the aesthetic outcome but also the patient's interactions with surgeon and staff that provide the impetus for positive or negative reviews."

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