Results from a survey published online September 20, 2016, in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal revealed that prospective patients valued testimonials and before and after photos over a surgeon’s years of practice. The study’s objectives were to determine the most important provider attributes to breast augmentation, combined breast/abdominal surgery, and facelift patients using conjoint analysis; and to test the conjoint using Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTurk), an internet crowdsourcing service.
Anonymous participants were asked via electronic survey to pick a surgeon for facelift surgery, breast augmentation or combined breast/abdominal surgery based on five attributes: testimonials, photos, reputation, pricing and practice years. Breast augmentation patients placed higher importance on photos, while combined breast/abdominal surgery and facelift patients valued testimonials.
Each group valued the following, in order:
Breast augmentation: photos (35.3%), testimonials (33.9%), reputation (15.7%), pricing (12.2%), practice years (3%).
Combined breast/abdominal surgery: testimonials (38.3%), photos (27.9%), reputation (17.5%), pricing (13.9%), practice years (2.4%).
Facelift: testimonials (38.1%), photos (29.4%), reputation (15.8%), pricing (13.9%), practice years (2.8%).
The researchers also noted that internet crowdsourcing is a novel participant recruitment method in plastic surgery with unique benefits including broad, diverse and anonymous participant pools; low-cost, rapid data collection; and high completion rate.
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