‭A new study has found that selfies can be used as an effective tool to enhance patients’ post-treatment experience, and alert the clinician to early post-treatment problems.

Published in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal and entitled, ‘Patient satisfaction with an early smartphone-based cosmetic surgery postoperative follow-up’, the study focused on patients of cosmetic surgery, but the results could be transferrable to cosmetic dentistry and non-surgical facial aesthetics.

Positive  experience

The researchers studied the use of a smartphone-based postoperative follow-up protocol, where 57 cosmetic surgery patients sent their surgeons images from their smartphone of the treated area within 48-72 hours ‭following surgery.

‭The surgeons sent text messages to their patients at discharge, instructing ‭them on how and when to send them the postoperative images.

On ‭the same day the pictures were sent, surgeons responded to review the progress.

Patients then recorded their thoughts on the experience in a questionnaire.

The report states that out of 52 patients surveyed, 50 (96.2%) indicated that they felt that the protocol improved their postoperative care experience.

Furthermore, the process alerted surgeons to three cases with early complications.

‭’The point of the selfie ‭programme is to make contact with the patient earlier than the usual follow-up visit that is within two to three day’, explained Dr James Zins, the study’s senior author and chairman of Cleveland Clinic’s Department of Plastic Surgery.

‘This is done for ‭two reasons: one, to reassure the patient and allay any fears regarding early post-operative problems, and two, to possibly recognise problems ‭early before they become more significant.’

Reference

Dalla Pozza E, D’Souza GF,   DeLeonibus A,  Fabiani B, Gharb BB,  Zins JE (2017) Patient satisfaction with an early smartphone-based cosmetic surgery postoperative follow-up. Aesthetic Surgery Journal doi: 10.1093/asj/sjx079