Nanomedicine and Body Modification: Critical Perspectives
This chapter examines nanomedicine in relation to body modification, in particular the increasingly popular form of body modification that is cosmetic surgery. It asks what possibilities nanomedicine might offer patients seeking cosmetic enhancement, and whether there are risks inherent in such procedures which patients might need to be warned about and which require strict regulation. I would argue that this is nanomedicine as opposed to the cosmetic use of nanotechnology as it necessitates the same medical procedures and invasive treatments, with their inherent risks, as non-cosmetic use of nanomedicine. The chapter goes on to examine these possibilities and risks from the perspective of theorists who have sought to safeguard health care rights, particularly those of women patients. Currently in the UK 91 % of cosmetic procedures are carried out on women, and the most requested invasive cosmetic surgery is for breast implants, with the number increasing rapidly year on year: approximately 5,646 breast enlargements were carried out in 2005 (BAAPS 2006); and 8,565 in 2009 (BAAPS 2010).
KeywordsCosmetic Surgery Breast Implant Body Modification Relational Autonomy Cosmetic Procedure
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