Background: Aesthetic procedures are significant sources of revenue for plastic surgeons. With the popularity of nonsurgical aesthetic procedures, many plastic surgeons question how to best tailor their aesthetic practice.
Methods: Revenue generated from surgical and minimally invasive aesthetic procedures performed in the United States between 2000 and 2011 was calculated from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons’ annual reports. Regression analysis was performed against six commonly cited economic indicators.
Results: In 2011, revenue from minimally invasive procedures increased from $3.0 billion to $5.7 billion (90 percent growth), whereas revenue from surgical procedures decreased from $6.6 billion to $6.0 billion (10 percent decline). Between 2000 and 2011, minimally invasive procedure market share grew from 30 percent to nearly 50 percent. Linear regression analysis revealed significant correlations between surgical procedure revenue and indicators of macroeconomic climate: Dow Jones Industrial Average (R = 0.72; p < 0.01), Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (R = 0.64, p < 0.05), and unemployment rate (R = −0.81; p < 0.001). Minimally invasive procedure revenue was significantly correlated with indicators related to microeconomic decision trends: disposable income per capita (R = 0.93; p < 0.001), real gross domestic product per capita (R = 0.88; p < 0.001), and home price index (R = 0.63; p < 0.05). No economic indicator in this study was found to be significantly correlated with both surgical and minimally invasive revenue.
Conclusion: Despite economic turbulence, minimally invasive procedures are the most rapidly growing source of revenue and are poised to be the dominant source of revenue in the aesthetic market.