Medical tourism is a booming phenomenon for many Australian women (and increasingly, men)
Places like Thailand, India, South Korea and Malaysia are becoming destinations for dentures, or holiday hair transplants.
More and more we are jetting off and returning slimmer, younger, curvier, smilier and hairier.
With many developed countries like Australia now experiencing an aging population, lengthy waiting lists for elective surgery, and increased health-care costs makes this an attractive option.
Thailand particularly has been quick to jump on the bandwagon, with the Tourist Authority of Thailand having a dedicated medical tourism website!
Make no mistake, this is a lucrative business, with an estimated 500,00 people from around the world travelling to Bangkok in 2011 specifically for medical treatment.
Breast augmentation that might cost ten thousand dollars in Brisbane can be carried out for three thousand dollars in Bangkok. A couple of days in hospital, with recuperation around a resort style pool, can sound mighty attractive.
There are now many medical tourism companies in Australia which can facilitate your makeover trip.
Like any medical procedure in an Australian hospital, there are risks involved.
These risks may seem compounded when you are in a foreign country.
Choose a reputable medical tourism company.
Ask for referrals from people who have had similar treatment, and check them out.
Consider the added costs involved: Travel, Insurance, and Borrowing to finance the procedure.
You may require the added cost of travel for a friend or family member, to aid during the recuperation period.
Consider the language barrier: You need a thorough understanding of what is involved, and you have to ensure that the doctors and surgeons understand your wishes.
What about possible post-surgery complications after you return home? If a problem exists is it feasible to return and get it fixed? Will insurance cover this?
Many Australians have been overseas for procedures, and have returned happy with the results, however, stories persist regarding botched surgery.
It is your body; make sure the money saved is worth it.