Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology

APR 2017

An evidence-based, peer-reviewed journal for practicing clinicians in the field of dermatology

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E 6 JCAD JOURNAL OF CLINICAL AND AESTHETIC DERMATOLOGY April 2017 • Volume 10 • Number 4 Introduction This brief paper stresses the importance of managing patient expectations. Some of the factors impacting this process are discussed, as are adverse effects that result from not managing expectations effectively. In an age when a large majority of the population is dissatisfied with their appearance, 1 the rate of cosmetic interventions continues to increase, with nonsurgical treatments being more than five times more common than surgical treatments. 2 The expectations of many patients have risen concomitantly, with successful treatment outcomes deemed to be the norm and "success" for patients being fairly synonymous with their level of expectation following a procedure. 3 Almost self-evidently, a satisfied patient is one whose expectations have been met. When Expectations Are Not Met Clinics providing cosmetic treatments will usually hear from their dissatisfied patient. At the mild end of the spectrum, clinicians will hear negative feedback, directly or indirectly. Bad publicity, notably these days through social media, may damage the reputation of the clinic. The worst outcome is a formal complaint and/or a claim for damages. From negative feedback to a formal complaint, the dissatisfaction that generates these responses almost always derives from failing to manage or meet the patient's expectations. This underlines the vital importance of identifying expectations at the first consultation and documenting this discussion 5 ; not least since this could prove vital should a subsequent complaint arise. Managing Expectations Associated with Cosmetic Interventions Sam J Robson, MB, ChB, MRCGP Definition The Oxford English Dictionary 4 defines the management of expectations as "seeking to prevent disappointment by establishing in advance what can realistically be achieved." Identifying expectations, in advance of treatment, therefore, is a clear prerequisite if that intervention is to give rise to a satisfied patient. JOURNAL OF CLINICAL AND AESTHETIC DERMATOLOGY Aesthetic complications Guidelines

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