Selecting aesthetic gynecologic procedures for plastic surgeons: a review of target methodology

Aesthetic Plast Surg. 2013 Apr;37(2):256-65. doi: 10.1007/s00266-012-0031-y. Epub 2013 Feb 5.

Abstract

Background: The objective of this article was to assist cosmetic-plastic surgeons in selecting aesthetic cosmetic gynecologic-plastic surgical interventions.

Methods: Target methodological analyses of pertinent evidence-based scientific papers and anecdotal information linked to surgical techniques for cosmetic-plastic female external genitalia were examined. A search of the existing literature from 1900 through June 2011 was performed by utilizing electronic and manual databases.

Results: A total of 87 articles related to cosmetic-plastic gynecologic surgeries were identified in peer-review journals. Anecdotal information was identified in three sources (Barwijuk, Obstet Gynecol J 9(3):2178-2179, 2011; Benson, 5th annual congress on aesthetic vaginal surgery, Tucson, AZ, USA, November 14-15, 2010; Scheinberg, Obstet Gynecol J 9(3):2191, 2011). Among those articles on cosmetic-plastic gynecologic surgical technique that were reviewed, three articles met the criteria for evidence-based medicine level II, one article was level II-1 and two papers were level II-2. The remaining papers were classified as level III. The pertinent 25 papers met the inclusion criteria and were analyzed. There was no documentation on the safety and effectiveness of cosmetic-plastic gynecologic procedures in the scientific literature.

Conclusions: All published surgical interventions are not suitable for a cosmetic-plastic practice. The absence of documentation on safety and effectiveness related to cosmetic-plastic gynecologic procedures prevents the establishment of a standard of practice. Traditional gynecologic surgical procedures cannot be labeled and used as cosmetic-plastic procedures, it is a deceptive practice. Obtaining legal trademarks on traditional gynecologic procedures and creating a business model that tries to control clinical-scientific knowledge dissemination is unethical.

Level of evidence iii: This journal requires that authors assign a level of evidence to each article. For a full description of these Evidence-Based Medicine ratings, please refer to the Table of Contents or the online Instructions to Authors www.springer.com/00266 .

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Genital Neoplasms, Female / surgery
  • Gynecologic Surgical Procedures / methods*
  • Humans
  • Reconstructive Surgical Procedures / methods*
  • Recovery of Function
  • Surgery, Plastic / methods*
  • Surgical Flaps / blood supply*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vagina / surgery
  • Vulva / surgery