Surely These Plastic Surgeon’s #surgicalselfies Are An Overshare Too Far?

Columbian plastic surgeon Bryan D’Alba has been sapping away liposuction - and snapping away pics for his instagram


by Amy Molloy |
Published on

When most of us are taking a photo for Instagram, we pretty much always try to hide that bit of our body we hate the most, right? But a new selfie trend does the opposite. See that bag of red stuff in the photo? That’s 21-year-old Luciana Amaral’s body fat, sucked straight from under her skin by her plastic surgeon.

Plastic surgeon Bryan D’Alba, who has a clinic in Barranquilla, Colombia, took the photograph and posted it to his Instagram and Facebook page, just hours after leaving the operating theatre. He added the caption: ‘Many Thanks to Luciana for the patience, who was my last patient last night awaiting liposuction. #SurgicalSelfie #plasticsurgery.’


The patient herself was the first person to post a comment under the Instagram photo. ‘Ameiiii,’ she wrote in Spanish (that’s ‘loooove’ to the rest of us). Under the Facebook photo she also wrote, ‘Thankyou Bryan. I’m loving the pains! Kkkkkkkkk!’

Clearly, Luciana was impressed with the results, and happy for her manmade makeover to be broadcast. Gone are the days when plastic surgery was often kept a secret. But, even though the stigma has lifted, is the idea of #SurgicalSelfies one overshare too far?


Depressingly, D’Alba isn’t the only surgeon partial to a mid-op selfie. ‘I’ve definitely seen other cosmetic and plastic surgeons doing this,’ says David Segal, the managing director of The Cosmetic Institute.

‘I think some surgeons do it to make a procedure seem less intimidating. They also want to appear fun and approachable. But are these really the characteristics a patient wants from a surgeon? Surgery is not a joke and shouldn’t be taken lightly.’

According to the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, plastic surgery is on the rise in Colombia, where Bryan D’Alba runs his practice, with over 211,000 surgical procedures per year, compared to approximately 95,000 in the UK.

The Colombian city of Medellín has even been dubbed ‘Silicone Valley’ because of the number of cosmetically-modified women strolling the streets. The signature look (small nose, thick lips, inflated chests) has been described as ‘narco-estetica’ because it’s stereotypically the type of women seen on the arm of local drug dealers.


This isn’t the first time Bryan D’Alba has used social media to showcase his talents. Another Facebook photo shows him bent over an operation table, with the comment: ‘To get something you never had, you have to do something you’ve never done’.

You could argue that in our internet-crazed culture, he’s simply using social media for the purpose that it’s intended – self-promotion. Yet, there’s a big difference between a musician posting a recording of a new song and a surgeon holding up a bag of bodily fluid.

In future, will there be an extra clause in surgery consent forms, asking if we mind of our doctors take a selfie? If there is, think twice before ticking yes, even if you’re not camera-shy. Think about it: if it was your body on the table, wouldn’t you want your surgeon’s mind on the job, not worrying about his most flattering angle…

Follow Amy on Twitter @Amy_Molloy

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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