Despite the fact that plastic surgery procedures have been helping patients increase their self esteem and even improve their health, there still appears to be range of people who do not support treatments. Namely, one Twitter follower, who has asked both iTunes and Google to remove an App that involves a simulated plastic surgery experience.
The app, technically a mobile game that allows users to give a Barbie doll plastic surgery, has been removed after the Twitter follower pushed for it to be taken off the market. Called “Plastic Surgery for Barbara”, the app, released by Games Banner Network, Inc., featured a Barbie lookalike who was significantly heavier than the traditional Mattel doll.
Though the description of the game has been removed, it previously read:
“This unfortunate girl has so much extra weight that no diet can help her. In our clinic she can go through a surgery called liposuction that will make her slim and beautiful. We’ll need to make small cuts on problem areas and suck out the extra fat. Will you operate her, doctor?”
As a child’s game, we can see where the app might give the wrong message. In the United States, plastic surgery is never performed on patients younger than 18 years of age, unless a medical need requires it. Even then, there is no “push” for young patients to undergo surgical treatment. On the contrary, our country encourages young patients to evaluate their need for cosmetic treatments and urges them to wait until older because many physical features teens have a problem with have a tendency to change and improve with age.
Liposuction, breast implants and buttocks enhancement are not recommended for young patients, who still have room to grow and lose weight. However, certain treatments, including reconstructive plastic surgery options like Rhinoplasty or even Botox can often be performed, given the medical nature of the improvements. Rhinoplasty, for example, can correct several medical impairments, including a deviated septum, which can cause substantial breathing problems in those who suffer from this physical impairment. Botox has been known to treat migraines and even stop excessive sweating.
We can see how the app can send the wrong message to young iPhone and Android users, and so did Everyday Sexism, a volunteer community that received a tip regarding the plastic surgery game. After reviewing the app, the organization’s founder, Laura Bates, told ABCNews.com that the messages being that are sent to young kids are “really damaging”, and so, the group launched a campaign to have the app removed via its Twitter account, @EverydaySexism.
While the app was not sanctioned by Mattel, the popular toy maker spoke out regarding the app and said “there are no unauthorized uses of our brands that may be unsafe or inappropriate for children.”
While the app is no more, Mattel isn’t exactly innocent. After all, all Barbie dolls feature small wastes, large breasts, plump buttocks, and basically, are the epitome of the “perfect” woman. Seems the “wrong” message has been sent to children for several years now.
Dr. Leonard Grossman, our experienced New York plastic surgeon, is highly against any cosmetic surgery that is based on peer pressure or that derives from any interest aside from the patient’s own, mature decision. Any kind of surgical procedure is a very big deal and should never be taken as lightly as a phone or computer app.