Cutting Away the Years

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The number of Montanans who receive cosmetic and plastic surgery has grown dramatically over the past few years. As a result, an increasing amount of businesses in the state are beginning to offer services related to the plastic surgery industry.

Bozeman Surgical Arts, located at 2619 West College, is one of the newest companies in the area that specializes in all forms of plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures. The business has been in operation in Bozeman for a year and a half, at which time Dr. Karl Hapcic moved to the Gallatin Valley from Elko, Nevada in order to open his own practice.

“It was kind of a dream come true to be able to come out here and finally open an office,” says Hapcic, noting that Bozeman will be his permanent home.

Although the perceived high cost of cosmetic procedures may hinder some potential customers from considering plastic surgery, Hapcic emphasizes the importance of affordability in his daily business operations. At Bozeman Surgical Arts, plastic surgery is touted as an affordable option for middle-income residents of the Gallatin Valley. According to Hapcic, the cost of cosmetic and plastic surgery is cheaper in Bozeman than other Montana cities, including Missoula, Billings, and Great Falls.

“I want cosmetic surgery to be available to people who’ve worked hard and want to treat themselves to a plastic surgery procedure,” says Hapcic.

Most of Hapcic’s patients are women in their 30s through 50s who want to recapture the look of their youth, many of which want to slow down the effects that aging and child¬bearing have taken on their body.

Hapcic estimates that 60 percent of the procedures he performs are elective, while 40 percent are reconstructive surgeries resulting from skin cancer, breast cancer, or other forms of bodily trauma. Hapcic states that breast augmentation is by far the most requested surgery at his practice. Breast reductions and lifts, lipo¬suctions, and abdominal surgeries are other extremely common procedures at Bozeman Surgical Arts.

“I think that we offer a very broad range of services,” observes Hapcic. “And not only do we deliver good surgery, but we also have exceptional follow-through.”

Due in part to their focus on customer satisfaction, Bozeman Surgical Arts has provided cosmetic services for a consistently high amount of patients since opening.

“There’s been very good growth in our practice,” notes Hapcic.

One of the reasons for Hapcic’s success is the commitment of his staff members. “Everybody in this office has an exceptional team concept,” says Hapcic. “I’m only as good as the people who help me.”

Full time employees at Bozeman Surgical Arts include Hapcic, his wife Debbie who acts as the practice administrator, patient care coordinator Deann Milmine and clinical assistant Nicki Hoppert. Milmine was one of Hapcic’s patients before becoming his employee, which helps her understand the perspective of potential patients. Now she coordinates preliminary and follow-up meetings in order to ensure each patient feels comfortable and knowledgeable about their procedures and care. Hapcic and Milmine discuss the history, risks, expectations, and alter¬native treatments of specific procedures with prospective patients and their spouses in order to ensure ultimate satisfaction.

“The patients need to know there are limitations to what we do, despite what the television programs show,” cautions Hapcic.

In his individual consultations, Hapcic promotes straightforward and realistic expectations, stating that Bozeman Surgical Arts can provide drastic improvement, but not perfection.