There has been a 230% increase in cosmetic surgery since 1981. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, in 2000, 7.4 million Americans had cosmetic plastic surgery. It has become more popular due to new surgical techniques that make it less risky. With the use of HBOT there is much more assurance that skin grafts will take hold and that scars will remain minimal. Additionally, healing takes place three times faster now that HBOT has become available to plastic surgeons, for procedures including face lifts, skin resurfacing with laser or chemical peels, tummy tucks, breast augmentations, and many more operations.
In 1996, Dr. David Perrins pioneered studies on the use of HBOT in cosmetic surgery. He worked in a hospital where the usual failure rate for cosmetic surgery was 10%.65 With HBOT, the failure rate was reduced to over half. Perrins recommended starting HBOT when there was any doubt about the viability of the skin graft. Later, he published research that showed a higher proportion of successful skin grafts on patients who received HBOT (64%) compared with patients that did not (17%). In 1970, he reported that patients receiving 2 ATA for two hours twice a day for three days had a 92% survival rate of the surface area of the graft compared with 63% of the area that survived in the patients who did not receive HBOT.66