Did you know there is a growing trend of selective plastic surgery to accommodate fashion trends?
Back in December of 2010, I was in the midst of teaching a Posture Alignment Specialist Certification Seminar, and happened to sit down to watch the ABC program Nightline before heading off to bed.
I was simultaneously grossed-out, shocked and horrified all at the same time! The show was featuring the newest trend in selective plastic surgery. Cutting up your feet, and willingly taking multiple health, posture and pain related risks so you can squeeze your feet into high fashion footwear.
Ewww...... (my opinion entirely).
Yep, I'm not kidding. Toe-shortening surgery and fat pad injections are just two of the newest plastic surgery trends focused on getting feet to fit fashion. Not only is it damaging enough to force your foot into ill-fitting shoes, now women (and I'm sure men) are resorting to more extreme measures to ensure their feet are high-heel friendly.
Check it out the Nightline program for yourself or watch this one:
In the article Plastic Surgery: Are Toes The New Nose?, ABC News Radio Health News writes
Toe shortening and fat injections into the foot pad are among the popular procedures in a new plastic surgery craze focused on feet. Paying up to $3,000 per procedure, more and more women are surgically transforming themselves into Cinderella from the ankle down. Helping women squeeze into high heels -- and curing the damage they cause -- is a $45 million-a-year business.
"All the girls are wearing cute high heels, open toes and they look pretty, and me -- I have to wear always closed shoes because I feel like they're staring at my long toe," Audy, who asked to be identified by first name only, told ABC News. She was awaiting cosmetic surgery to make her second toe shorter than her big toe.
Podiatrist Ali Sadrieh in Beverly Hills, Calif., performs the toe shortening procedure, which involves actually dislocating the toe and sawing out a two-millimeter chunk of bone. He then inserts a titanium rod to bring the shortened bone back together.
Another procedure gaining traction in the world of foot facelifts plumps up the bottom of the foot to make high heel wearing more comfortable, like permanently installing a Dr. Scholl's pad. It involves liposuctioning fat from a patient's belly and injecting it into the balls of the feet.
And then there is the ever popular pinky toe tuck, in which fat is taken out of the little toe to make it narrower.
While cosmetic surgery on the feet is trending high with women as a permanent solution for their footwear crises, it is largely frowned upon by The American Podiatric Medical Association and officially opposed by the American Orthopedic Foot and Ankle Society because of risks and complications of the operation. Potential problems include permanent nerve damage, infection, scarring, a recurrence of the deformity that was supposedly fixed and chronic pain when wearing not just high heels, but all shoes, according to the AOFAS.
Seriously? I was blown away! Sadly, the trend seems to be continuing. Stylist Magazine reports that:
This year's warning: heels are getting so high (and so prevalent) that more women than ever are resorting to cosmetic feet surgery to fit into them. Such procedures include getting fillers injected into the balls of your feet and even "toe jobs." To which we say: ouch.
Of course, women have been wearing high heels for centuries. But in recent years those spikey heels have gotten higher and higher (thanks, Christian Louboutin). In 2008 journalists noted that five-inch heels and towering platforms were becoming commonplace. So naturally in 2009, doctors went on record to declare heels a health hazard. The same happened in 2010, and again in 2011 and 2012. Turns out, no matter when you ask experts, they'll tell you that cramming your tootsies into vertiginous death traps is not a good idea.
But we really can't win, because modifying our feet to fit into said traps is dangerous, too. It was reported in 2009 that women were getting plastic surgery on their feet to strap on those sky-high shoes -- even though the risks of such plastic surgery "including infections, pain, scarring and nerve damage -- are much greater than the benefits," doctors say. The same was reported in 2010.
And despite the health warnings, we're are still at it. The Daily Mail noted yesterday that requests for filler injections into women's toe pads, balls of the feet and heels have jumped 21%, doubling last year's rates. It looks like cosmetic foot surgery isn't going anywhere.
With summer approaching and those gorgeous stilettos calling your name, would you go to the doctor's office for some high heel surgery?
OUCH! It seems that modern day foot binding is alive and well, and for what cost? As a corrective exercise specialist I have such a hard time wrapping my brain around intentionally changing function and position for fashion.
Our feet and ankles have a proper design and function. Now, I'm not against gorgeous high heels, and when worn occasionally, the impact can be neutralized with a comprehensive posture alignment therapy corrective exercises.
In fact I get asked frequently what I think about wearing them by many of my clients. My answer is, sure of course you can BUT....
it is imperative that you understand the damage that your body will incur if you do not limit the time in them AND proactively counteract the negative effects they have on the body. If you are a lover and wearer of high heels, or you have ankle and foot pain, it's important that you take care of your body and re-balance the muscles and joint position out.
So to be PERFECTLY clear here, what I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around is undergoing SELECTIVE plastic surgery to purposely put your feet into current fashion trends and wear day in and out!
A foot that is altered by surgical manipulation WILL suffer ramifications on posture, pain and performance that cannot be undone. It is potentially life changing for the worse!
The good news in this story? Hopefully if you were considering the surgery and have not yet undergone plastic surgery to change the shape of your feet or toes we gave you some information to digest. And if you are suffering the consequences of the long term overuse of high heels and ill fitting fashion shoes and are experiencing posture related pain, we can help!
Corrective exercise under the guidance of a certified professional can help you body return to it's proper blue-print design WITHOUT medication, manipulation or surgery. It's not an overnight fix, but it can and does work!
We'd love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Would you undergo selective surgery for fashion? If so why or why not?