Treatments Abroad

By Dr Dennis Wolf on Thursday, June 29, 2017

In our highly competitive market and being within 1.5 hours skip across to the continent there are many clinics abroad that are offering cheaper options.  It remains imperative that you research these clinics and doctors very well.

Any cosmetic or surgical procedures come with their inherent risks of the procedure.  Whether this is to do with the anaesthetic or the surgery itself – there are always risks.

If you have any medical conditions then this risk profile may increase.

It may be very tempting to find the cheapest options available and some of these may be abroad.  Reasons for offering cheaper treatments may be that the clinic has a higher turnover of patients.

Find the right doctor or clinic and research their experience and qualifications.

Language differences may cause problems if complications arise. You need to make sure your expectations are met and that you and the treating doctor have a mutual understanding of the procedure.

There are also specific issues to consider if you're thinking of going abroad for treatment, such as how to co-ordinate your care after the operation or treatment (aftercare) and how to ensure your medical notes are exchanged between your medical teams in this country and abroad.

Booking a treatment without a proper consultation is not considered to be “Good Medical Practice” according to the GMC guidelines.  Some clinics offer Skype consultations as initial chats – this would be ok as long as a proper consultation and physical examination takes place before the treatment and you still have time to reflect and change your mind.

Aftercare is probably one of the most important aspects of the process.  Often you will be sent home within a few days.

If problems arise you are either left to sort yourself out back in the UK or you would need to fund the trip back to the clinic.  Think about whether, when you return home, you will need further care or check-ups. Work out who will provide this aftercare and whether it is included in the total price of the procedure.

Both surgery and air travel increase the risk of developing deep vein thrombosis or a pulmonary embolism. Ask the clinic doing the treatment how soon after the procedure you'll be fit to travel.

Remember that no saving in money is worth your life or limb……