NEVEN CIGANOVIC: My name is Neven Ciganovic and I grew up in Zagreb, Croatia. I had a lovely childhood with my father, mother and older sister. I had my first surgery when I was 22 and I just couldn’t stop. My goal is to look good forever. COMM: At 47 years old, Croatian Neven Ciganovic has been having plastic surgery for the past 25 years. NEVEN CIGANOVIC: When I was nine, I had a problem with my knees and I couldn’t exercise. And as a result of this, I became a fat kid you know, that’s like I gained weight. When I was in high school, I decided to lose weight you know, and I became anorexic and bulimic and I lost really a lot of weight, yeah. I became very obsessed of how I look at that time. In 1992, the people started to put the silicone in the lips. It was really new in the world everywhere and I had, from the childhood, I had a little scar on my lip and I wanted to fix this. I thought that silicone going to fix this. The result was not fix the scar, they just plumped my lips more and I like it. That was my first procedure. I became very obsessed of how I look at that time. I had three nose jobs, silicone pumping lips and I have twice made my cheekbones, cheek implants. I just want to stop this ageing – this is my goal. I still want to look 47 forever. COMM: A minor celebrity in his native Croatia, Nevin has built up thousands of followers on social media using his youthful looks. NEVEN CIGANOVIC: I call myself Starletan on Instagram because the Starletan means this is a person who is everywhere, everyone knows this person like in person. In Serbia, there was one article about me in the newspaper and they call me Starletan, I was like in so many TV reality shows. I like this, this is perfect. I want to be Starletan. COMM: Neven has traveled the world for his various procedures. He is currently in London, visiting his friend Sanja before heading to Tehran for surgery on his nose. Sanja has known Neven for 20 years, long before he embarked on his plastic surgery transformation. BRITT SANJA JUSIC: Well, we met. I mean we met at the time when I was finishing my high school. I know him since he was like a tall, slim guy without any tattoos. I remember him as being quite shy as well. I would dare to say a little bit introvert as well. It’s true? NEVEN CIGANOVIC: Yeah! BRITT SANJA JUSIC: You were shy. And obviously the transformation happened and when I see Neven now, I don’t see much of old Neven.
NEVEN CIGANOVIC: Me neither. BRITT SANJA JUSIC: I really don’t. It’s like a different person. BRITT SANJA JUSIC: There is no way that Neven looks 47. It’s pretty remarkable the way he looks. INTERVIEWER: Do you think he can sustain that?
BRITT SANJA JUSIC: Well, he clearly, I mean knowing Neven, he will. That’s all I am going to say. He clearly has an agenda, which is 47 forever. So I am pretty sure he is going to do everything in his power to stay there. COMM: Neven’s surgery in Tehran is to correct a common problem for people who have had multiple nose jobs. NEVEN CIGANOVIC: The doctor is going to fix my breathing, problem with breathing. You see that how I speak now is a little weird. COMM: With his years of experience, Neven knows the value of speaking to multiple doctors. While in London, he has arranged to meet Dr. Deniz Kanliada. DR. DENIZ KANLIADA: It’s always good to have a second or third opinion. DR. DENIZ KANLIADA: Because it gives you more information, more details and wider perspective about the surgery. NEVEN CIGANOVIC: I go to Tehran to have the surgery you know, and because of my breathing problems. DR. DENIZ KANLIADA: As a surgeon, you need to be able to give them what they need but sometimes it is unrealistic. For example, the breathing is a big problem for the revision surgeries and if they are keen to have the beauty above the breathing then you should warn them. For a rhinoplasty, we need to check the inside of the nose with the camera. For me, it is a must because we need to find out if there is any septal problems, turbinate problems, allergies beforehand. So this is the deviated septum, which is blocking your airway. This black area is the airflow space, which is really narrow. What we can do is put an incision inside taking out the deviated septum and close it back. So it will be about 30 minutes, 45 minutes procedure. Yeah! And you will breathe better. COMM: Despite the concerns over his breathing, Neven asks about the look of his nose. NEVEN CIGANOVIC: Actually, yeah, I think here, this part is a little bit, you know, thick. DR. DENIZ KANLIADA: Thick? Okay, if you narrow this wall, middle wall more, your breathing will be even worse. NEVEN CIGANOVIC: Worse! Yeah, yeah. DR. DENIZ KANLIADA: I convinced him that he doesn’t need to do anything about his shape of the nose. In my practice, I always take care of breathing first.
NEVEN CIGANOVIC: Yeah, of course. DR. DENIZ KANLIADA: And once you get older, it will be more significant. We need to do something to fix your breathing. I wouldn’t touch any of, any other part of your nose. NEVEN CIGANOVIC: After this consultation, I feel that I’m going to Tehran for the right reason. His priority to correct my breathing instead of the look of my nose. NEVEN CIGANOVIC: Next is the end of September, I will go to Istanbul for the changing colour of my eyes. BRITT SANJA JUSIC: I think having surgery, Neven became a much more confident person. It really helped him on his journey. As long as this is something that he truly wants to do and if this is something that he really needs for himself then obviously friends are there to support. We do need those extra things to actually finally manage to come out as people you know. For some people, it’s a surgery, for some other people it could be something else. As long as it is improving someone’s quality of life as well and making them feel better about themselves, I think it’s a good thing. COMM: Neven arrived safely in Tehran and his nose job went ahead as planned. NEVEN CIGANOVIC: And I could say only that I breathe so well you know, it’s after twenty years I breathe really how I should breathe. I am overwhelmed with this result. I am so happy that all this body and all these looks take me all around the world and I love it.
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