Home | Procedures | Plastic surgery

Article Context

  1. Overview
  2. Benefits and risks
  3. Procedure
  4. Cosmetic surgery vs plastic surgery
  5. Care at Medicover
  6. Frequently Asked Questions

Overview

Plastic surgery is a highly specialised type of surgery in which Plastic Surgeons try to salvage and improve the patient’s physical appearance and the ability to function. They include both reconstructive and cosmetic procedures to achieve these goals.

While reconstructive plastic surgery is considered functional, the results of cosmetic procedures can have far-reaching consequences, as deformities and blemishes can have a negative impact on one's psychological well-being, self-confidence, and self-esteem. The aim of plastic surgery is the restoration of skin and tissue to normal functioning whereas improving one’s appearance is a secondary objective.

Plastic and reconstructive surgery benefits patients of all ages and types, ranging from the child with a birth defect to the young adult injured in an accident or the elderly with an age-related problem.


Plastic surgery includes the following types:

Face
  1. Brow lift
  2. Chin surgery
  3. Eyelid reduction surgery
  4. Ear pinning
  5. Face lift surgery
  6. Facial implants
  7. Hair replacement surgery
  1. Nose surgery
  2. Lip augmentation
  3. Cleft lip and palate
  4. Craniosynostosis
  5. Scar revision
  6. Skin cancer
  7. Skin rejuvenation and resurfacing
Body
  1. Abdominoplasty
    (Tummy tuck)
  2. Arm lift
  3. Body lift
  4. Fat injection
  5. Labiaplasty
  1. Sclerotherapy
  2. Body contouring
  3. Butt lift
  4. Gender affirming surgeries
  5. Liposuction
  6. Thigh lift
Breast
  1. Breast asymmetry
  2. Breast augmentation
  3. Breast implant with lift
  4. Breast lift
  1. Breast reduction
  2. Gynecomastia
    (Male breast reduction)
  3. Nipple enhancement for inverted nipples
Reconstructive
  1. Breast reconstruction
  2. Burns and scarring
  3. Cleft lip and palate
  1. Hand surgery
  2. Tissue expansion
Skin
  1. Chemical peel
  2. Dermabrasion (Dermaplaning)
  3. Collagen/ Fat injectable fillers
  1. Botox/ filler injections
  2. Laser peels
  3. Scar revision
  4. Tattoo removal

Benefits of plastic surgery

Plastic surgery is often thought of as having only aesthetic benefits but many procedures aim to improve the overall health of an individual.

Some of the benefits of plastic surgery are:

  • Improved self-confidence: Plastic surgery plays a vital role in a person's self-confidence. The person becomes more social due to the new found confidence.
  • Better physical health: Plastic surgery can improve the patients health. For example, a rhinoplasty in which the nose of a patient is restructured which will improve breathing.
  • Better opportunities: It was stated in one of the research that people who are attractive tend to attract better professional and personal opportunities.
  • Better mental health: Improvement in aesthetics and looks boost confidence thereby reducing social anxiety. This can push the patient to lead a happier life and take up new challenges
  • Better weight management: Plastic surgery such as tummy tuck or liposuction can help remove the excessive fat from the patient’s body which will ultimately lead to a healthy life.

Risks:

Plastic surgery, like any other surgery, has risks that you should be aware of before deciding to undergo this procedure.

  • Hematoma- A red patch that resembles a large bruise on the operated area.
  • Pain and discomfort
  • Post surgical infections
  • Scarring at the surgery site

Procedure

The procedure of plastic surgery requires pre-operative preparations and post-operative care. Lets understand the details of the procedure here.

Before the procedure

  • Preoperative procedures include a variety of diagnostic tests that assist your doctor in determining the timing and type of your plastic surgery.
  • Preoperative tests include Blood tests (complete blood count, liver function test, renal function test and blood grouping) which help your doctor to adapt a safer way to treat your problem.
  • Blood tests can easily detect signs of infection. If these parameters are not within normal ranges, your doctor may decide to postpone your plastic surgery procedure.
  • Radiological tests include ECG, screening Mammography and Chest X ray.
  • Physical examination to check for any signs of infection on your skin layers.
  • Tell your doctor about medications being used and allergies. Your doctor will advise you to stop using these medications one to two weeks before your plastic surgery date.
  • Following the completion of all necessary tests and examinations, your doctor will discuss and choose a convenient date for your plastic surgery.
  • The schedule for extensive burn cases is determined immediately after the patient is brought to the hospital because such patients require immediate medical attention before any other problem occurs.
  • After covering all the details of your procedure, you are asked to sign a consent form as an approval for performing the surgery.

During the procedure

Plastic surgery can involve a number of different techniques to move and manipulate body tissue.Skin grafts are used as the main type of plastic surgery.

A skin graft is a procedure in which healthy skin is removed from an unaffected area of the body and used to replace lost or damaged skin. They can be used for open fractures of the skin, large wounds, or when an area of the skin is surgically removed ( such as due to cancer or burns).

  • General anaesthesia or local anaesthesia will be given to you based on the size and location of the affected area.
  • The skin graft is collected from the donor site(area where the skin has been taken from), transferred to the recipient site and held in place using stitches, staples or special glue.
  • The wound will be covered with a sterile dressing until it connects to the surrounding blood supply, which usually takes 5 to 7 days.
  • A dressing will also be placed over the donor site to prevent infection.

After the procedure

  • Use your medications as prescribed.
  • You should avoid strenuous activity because elevation in Blood Pressure or pulse can result in bleeding.
  • Three weeks after facial surgery, sleep with your head elevated above your heart level. This will help to reduce pain, bruising, and swelling.
  • For the first 24-48 hours after the surgery, you may use an ice pack. To prevent tissue damage from freezing, place a dry cloth below the ice bag. There will be no ice used for facelifts, breast lifts, tummy tucks, or nipple skin grafts.
  • When you get home, you can drink liquids. Later, If you are not nauseated, you may eat a light meal. Do not take medications, especially painkillers and antibiotics, on an empty stomach.
  • Stay hydrated and extend your calf muscles to reduce risk of blood clots. Walking is good, but not exercising.
  • Smoking or tobacco in any form is not good for circulation in healing tissues, and it can lead to tissue damage. Blood clot risk also increases.
  • Maintain to put on any bandages, dressings, or compression garments until you see your doctor. Liposuction garments and nasal splints should not be removed for any reason
  • Do not use Aspirin, ibuprofen for 2 weeks before and 4 weeks after surgery to reduce risk of bleeding.
  • Do not drink any alcoholic beverages while taking pain medication.
  • Do not consume alcohol while taking pain killers. Do not drive or operate machinery for the next 48 hours or while taking pain medication.

Cosmetic surgery vs plastic surgery

The field of plastic surgery can be categorised into two; namely, cosmetic surgery and reconstructive surgery. Both are subspecialties of plastic surgery. Let's understand the difference between the two.

Cosmetic surgery Plastic surgery
A cosmetic surgery is performed to beautify or improve the existing physique of a patient. A plastic surgery is performed to reconstruct a patient’s dysfunctional areas of the body.
Improving the patient’s looks, appeal, symmetry and proportion of the face or body are the key goals. Performed to correct facial and body defects due to birth disorders, accidents, burns and diseases.
Cosmetic surgeries are performed on the head, neck and body. Cosmetic surgeries are elective. Plastic surgeries are also performed in the head, neck and body. They can be mandatory in some cases.
Cosmetic surgery is rarely covered under a health insurance plan. Most of the plastic surgeries involve reconstruction to restore function of the body part, it is often covered by health insurance.

Before opting for any type of plastic surgery, get to know the possible outcomes and realistic goals of the surgery.

Care at Medicover Hospitals

At Medicover Hospitals, we have round-the-clock availability of plastic surgeons working together to provide excellent care to our patients. We provide different types of cosmetic treatments using the most advanced technologies bringing the best results for our patients. Our Plastic Surgeons have performed many cosmetic and reconstructive procedures with successful outcomes.


Frequently Asked Questions:

There is no right age for plastic surgery as treatments such as liposuction, breast augmentation, nose corrections tend to be for younger patients whereas older patients seek procedures such as eye lift, face lift, brow lift and neck lift.

Bleeding, infection can occur with any procedure. There may be some scarring.

The majority of incisions are made in natural skin creases or behind the hairline, and they are typically closed with dissolving sutures. Bruising and scarring can be concealed with standard make-up until healing is complete. Most scars fade and become unnoticeable over time.

Tumescent liposuction is the most effective, safer and less painful than standard liposuction. It is performed as an outpatient operation and does not require general anaesthesia.

Nonsmokers in good overall health and at a healthy body weight are ideal candidates for cosmetic surgery. Those with serious medical conditions, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, a bleeding disorder, heart disease, or depression, should avoid cosmetic surgery.

References:

  • https://plasticsurgery.org.au/procedures/
  • https://stanfordhealthcare.org/medical-treatments/c/cosmetic-plastic-surgery/types.html
  • https://www.yalemedicine.org/conditions/plastic-surgery-techniques