Plastic surgery is a branch of surgery that is concerned with the repair, restoration, or even improvement of defective, lost or injured parts of the body. Plastic surgery has two main branches, reconstructive plastic surgery and cosmetic surgery.
Reconstructive plastic surgery
Also called reconstruction surgery. This kind of surgery is done to restore the function or appearance of body parts that have otherwise been disfigured due to burns, diseases, birth disorders, injury or trauma. It is mainly conducted to improve function, but pays little consideration to restore normal appearance.
– Breast reconstruction
– Scar revision for treatment of scars
– Breast augmentation and reduction
– Gynecomastia (male breast reduction)
– Hand surgery
– Palate and cleft lip surgery
– Brachial plexus repair
This type of plastic surgery aims at improving a person’s aesthetic appearance or removing signs of aging. The number of people opting for cosmetic surgery is increasing at a very fast rate, statistics have it.
Cosmetic surgery procedures include
Rhinoplasty (nose job) – Refers to the reshaping of the nose to narrow the length of nostrils, to alter the angle between upper lip and nose or to make it smaller or bigger.
Liposuction – This is the removal of excess fat deposits from people who feel overweight or feel to surgically lose weight. The procedure can be done on the abdomen, thighs, hips, buttocks and upper arms.
Facelift – A procedure carried out to tighten muscles of the face, removing excess fat and redraping the skin. Done to make a person look younger.
Eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) – Removal of extra skin, fat or muscle on the upper and lower eyelids. It may also refer to application of a permanent eyeliner.
Tummy tuck – Flattening of the abdomen by removing extra fat and skin
Breast lift (mastopexy) – Done to raise and reshape sagging breasts.
Buttock lift – Tightening or lifting the buttocks by removing extra skin
Others include Breast augmentations, photodamage, Mammoplasty, Phalloplasty, Cryolipolysis, Cryoneuromodulation, Genioplasty, Cheek augmentation, Orthognathic Surgery etc
Questions to ask yourself before opting for cosmetic surgery
Before considering cosmetic surgery, it’s good to ask yourself questions that will help you undertake the surgery without fear. They will also help you to determine whether what you are considering is justified. If most answers to these questions are negative, you must avoid undergoing the surgery.
– Will the surgery improve your social status in the society?
-What are the long term side effects of the surgery?
– Will the surgery completely solve the entire problem?
– What will be the cost of undergoing the surgery?
– Will the surgery improve your relationship with other people?
Plastic surgery techniques
Both cosmetic and reconstructive surgery procedures are performed using different techniques. The 3 main techniques used include
Involves transfer of healthy live tissue from one part of the body to another. It’s often done to areas that that have lost fat, skin, skeletal support or muscle movement.
Involves insertion of an expander device that secrets a fluid, which aids the body to grow extra skin by stretching the surrounding area.
A procedure that transfers a part of a healthy skin to the affected area to replace damaged or lost skin.
Risks associated with plastic surgery
Poor cosmetic outcome – One of the greatest fears of plastic surgery is poor cosmetic outcome. Since the main aim of cosmetic surgery is to improve appearance, the results may fail to achieve that, and sometimes may even worsen the initial appearance of the person.
Hematoma – This refers to internal collection of clotted blood outside a blood vessel. The area may develop a growth due to the blood beneath. A large hematoma may require a follow up surgery as it can cause pain or prevent blood flow.
Nerve damage – Plastic surgery, just like any other surgery, can result to nerve damage or numbness. For example, damage of face nerves may result to the person being unable to make facial expressions.
Scarring – Possibly one of the greatest risks associated with plastic surgery. The scars sometimes may fail to disappear even after healing takes place.
Anesthesia complications – Sometimes, the anesthesia used may have complications to the person undergoing the surgery, and may even lead to death.
To minimize the risks and complications of plastic surgery, the patient should
- Ensure the live a healthy lifestyle before and after the surgery.
- Wisely choose a qualified surgeon to perform the surgery.
- Ensuring they feed on a healthy and balanced diet.
- Avoid alcohol/smoking as these substances may increase risks associated with plastic surgery.