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Monday, 24 December, 2001, 15:12 GMT
Austrians opt for a plastic gift - surgery
Plastic surgeon
Some surgeons offer vouchers for a range of operations
By Bethany Bell in Vienna

In Austria this Christmas it seems perfume or jewellery are passe.

Plastic surgeons in the northern town of Linz say more and more Austrian women are receiving cosmetic surgery as a gift - in the shape of breast enhancements, liposuction and nose jobs.

Most procedures of aesthetic surgery are very appropriate to make a nice surprise for somebody

Dr Damian Urban
It's not cheap - an average procedure costs up to $3,000.

The surgeons say demand increases significantly in the weeks running up to Christmas.

Some even offer gift vouchers for a whole range of operations.

Male domain

But is a face-lift always a welcome Christmas gift?

Vienna Christmas tree
There may be surprises under the tree for Austrians this year
"Most procedures of aesthestic surgery are very appropriate to make a nice surprise for somebody," says plastic surgeon Dr Damian Urban.

"Mostly men come to me and ask how they can surprise their girlfriends or wives. Mostly I didn't have a negative reaction - they are satisfied. "

While some women may secretly want to see their partners undergo liposuction, Dr Urban says buying the vouchers is mainly a male affair.

But for all those men out there dreaming of enormous new bosoms for their partners, there's a catch.

Huge breasts - say the surgeons - are definitely out of fashion.

See also:

08 Aug 01 | Health
Most women 'want plastic surgery'
01 May 00 | Health
Plastic surgery boom
05 Dec 01 | Business
E-tailers prepare for Xmas boom
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