Dr. Karoline Nowillo
“Good morning, my name is Dr. Karoline Nowillo. I’m a board-certified plastic surgeon in New York. My colleague, Dr. Lara Devgan, cannot be here today. I am here to read her testimony.”
Dr. Lara Devgan
“My name is Dr. Lara Devgan. I am a woman who cares about breast health. I am testifying today as a board-certified plastic surgeon, the mother of six young children, and Chief Medical Officer of RealSelf.
RealSelf is the world’s leading online destination for women interested in breast implants where nearly 100 million people a year go to learn about plastic surgery procedures and candidly review their experiences.
Over 10 million people in the world have breast implants. Three hundred thousand women get breast implants every year in the United States, and about 1 in 20 adult American women have breast implants.
In 2018 alone, people visited RealSelf 10,969,011 times to research breast implants.
Through RealSelf, we have a tremendous amount of data to support the safety and efficacy of breast implants. On a population level, women are very happy and satisfied with their breast implants.
Over 55,000 women have reviewed breast implants on RealSelf with nearly 97% of them saying that they are worth it.
What we do is medicine, not magic. And life does not promise us perfection.
However, this data echoes my experience in my medical practice where I have personally placed hundreds of breast implants for cosmetic reasons and cancer reconstruction in New York City.
Placement of breast implants is a real medical procedure, meaning it has risks, benefits, alternatives, and indications, just like all medical procedures. Further, science is always evolving and maturing, and the more data that we collect, the more we can understand and improve our processes over time.
Over 84,000 questions about breast implants have been asked on RealSelf, with more than 619,000 answers by board-certified plastic surgeons.
I want the FDA to know that we care about our patients and we are committed to helping them.
My message to those considering breast implants is that we, as board-certified plastic surgeons, are extremely committed to patient safety, information gathering, and the well-being of the people who put their bodies and lives in our hands.
While I cannot predict the future, I can confidently say I would feel comfortable having breast implants myself or recommending them to my loved ones who desire them.
[Testimony given by board-certified plastic surgeon and Chief Medial Officer of RealSelf.com, Dr. Lara Devgan, at the General and Plastic Surgery Devices Panel on March 25, 2019. The title of this article does not constitute part of the speaker’s testimony to the FDA and any hyperlinks or text appearing in brackets were added for clarity or ease of use by editors.]