Facelift in Thailand

Plastic surgery is becoming more popular but is expensive in the U.S. By luck, I happened to see a report on 60 Minutes of where it is much less at a world-class hospital in Thailand – www.bumrungrad.com /. That was for me. I made extensive plans and went to the airport for my first flight in 30 yrs. Couldn’t believe how well they process masses of people, how good looking the Asian flight attendants were [and how scruffy some passengers were]. Because of the dateline I left one day and arrived 3 days later. [Coming back I left one day and got home the same day!] Because of the excitement, I needed less food and sleep.

I got a hotel for $25 a night [jan. ‘06] next to the hospital [the only way] and began going to appointments I’d made long ago with a doctor I’d read about on the net – www.drpoomee.yourmd.com . The hospital was a wonder. The staff at all levels was clean-cut, well-tailored, professional, and exceedingly polite and helpful [the Thai culture]. There were apartments for patients, secretarial services, and translators. People can often walk in off the street and see a dr. in l0 minutes. The huge lobby was filled with shops and a flow of patients from many countries in their native dress. It had eateries including Starbucks and a Macdonald’s which served a ‘samurai burger.’

It handles the most international patients – 350,000 a year. It issues you a card and from then on your dealings come up on a computer screen. Patients’ rooms have TV channels in 9 languages – one in French, 2 in Japanese, 3 Bengali, 3 Hindi, 3 Korean, 4 Arabic, 4 Chinese, l2 Thai, and l3 English. Most of the 500 doctors are American trained. Whereas doctors in California told me what I did need, those at this hospital told me what I did not need, saving me time, trouble and money, and boosting my confidence in them.

I had:

– a neck lift, mid-face lift, all four eyelids lifted – $6k. 2 nights in the hospital.

– liposuction of stomach and love handles – $3700 – one night in hospital.

I was told that if you gain weight after liposuction, you gain all over, not just where it was

taken off.

I had pain killers for all the above but didn’t need them

This was my first trip to Asia. The vegetation, climate, birds, fruit, food, sights, aromas and sounds were exotic. The Bridge on the River Kwai was half a day’s journey. There were many Buddhist shrines and pictures of the king.

The Thais were genuinely good-natured and cordial – they enjoyed life. Like other Asians, they were smart, shrewd, subtle, and easy to underestimate.

If the young had ego problems it didn’t show. They didn’t have tattoos, piercings, baggy pants, torn jeans, odd hair and grubby clothes. The men didn’t wear undershirts as a shirt, three day stubbles, have their hair in their face, or gawk at women.

The adorable kids were the cutest – they melt your heart.

The young women were cute, sweet, charming, exotic, feline, pristine, impossibly slender, svelte and sleek with an inward, beguiling femininity, grace and dignity. They’d dress for work, pull their shiny hair back from their porcelain complexions, put it in a bun or something, and go about in groups, having fun and looking like models.

When they worked on my teeth with their slender fingers and prepped me for operations they spoke gently to each other in their higher-pitched voices. It was like being cared for by little birds.

My stomach has a better shape, my teeth look better, and I see a younger guy in the mirror. Makes you feel you can do anything.

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