Say you’re a big, big fan of elves. Stay with me here, readers. Just say that you love elves, like Orlando Bloom’s character Legolas in The Lord of The Rings, so much, that you really wish you could be an elf’or at least look like one. Would you undergo body-modification surgery to have your ears permanently sculpted into a point at the top? I know you probably think I’ve lost my mind here, but there are people who are actually having this procedure done. Good Morning America is reporting on what it calls a ‘new trend’ in plastic surgery: elfin ears. According to the report, the pointy ear look is achieved by slicing the cartilage and sewing it back together to look like a point. A doctor interviewed for the piece says this is a potentially dangerous procedure that is very difficult to reverse and could lead to permanent disfigurement of the ear.
But before you write the people getting this procedure off as completely cookoo for cocoa puffs, consider this: almost 17,000 Canadians had their breasts augmented in 2003. Getting breast implants to attain what many women consider to be an ideal shape also comes with risks, including rupture of the implant, breast pain and hardening of the area around the implant. Whether you’re altering your body to resemble Barbie or Spock, the fact remains that many people (and mostly women in particular) want to change their looks. Now, I realize that breast enhancement surgery is done by qualified physicians while the elfin ear procedure seems to be performed by a body-modification specialist (a.k.a., the same guy who pierces your nose), but is there really much difference in the motivation behind it?