Plastic Surgery

Reviewed by James Brann, M.D.

Beauty truly is in the eye of the one who beholds it. All that we view in the media shapes our perceptions of how a beautiful woman should look. In every mirror stands the very image of truth for all women. Do you see a nose that appears larger than your face? You can’t help saying to yourself, “Gone are the days of a tight buttocks and perky breasts”. You are not the only woman who is faced with this reality and a spoken or unspoken desire to look different. The medical profession offers an answer to make you look younger, thinner and more pleasing to your eyes. Beautifying yourself doesn’t come without an emotional, physical and monetary price.

Plastic surgeons perform a wide variety of cosmetic categorical surgeries. The most common cosmetic procedures are performed on the breasts, buttocks, face and abdominal area. Breast surgery is the most common type of cosmetic surgery performed on women. There are three types performed: breast augmentation, breast lift or reduction.

Breast Augmentation, also called Augmentation Mammaplasity is the enhancing of the breasts using inflatable implants filled with saline. Saline is a salty brackish substance. Although breast augmentation may appear more appealing to the, it allows for the following possible risks:
  • Lack of permancey in the implant-deflation and scar tissue build up
  • Tightness or hardness in the breast, know as capsular contracture
  • Bleeding or infection
  • Increase or decrease in nipple or breast skin sensitivity

Mastopexy, known as a breast lift is mostly performed on women who are aging or who have been pregnant. In these circumstances, the breast gland has begun to droop. Surgeons labor to raise and reshape sagging breasts by removing excess skin. The surgeon then repositions the remaining tissues and nipples. The results of the surgery are generally first rate.

However, the following are limited possible risks of a breast lift:
  • Thick wide scars
  • Skin loss
  • Infection
  • Unevenly positioned nipples
  • Permanent loss of feeling in nipples or breast

Women in need of a breast reduction, often complain of multiple physical symptoms, including neck, shoulder, back pain, parethesia (a burning, tingling, itching sensation) of the arms and the grooving of the bra strap into the shoulders. The procedure requires lengthy incisions, usually in the fold underneath the breast to remove tissue to a size of comfort. The only possible side effects are soreness and unseen scars.

The three types of breast surgery require an average of 1-3 hours and are mostly outpatient. Recovery rates vary from a few days to one week to return to work. The duration of results is variable due to possible weight changes. Cosmetic changes to the breasts come to the patient at a “busty” price range of $2000 to $4000 on average. Health insurances will not cover cosmetic breast surgery. However, most health insurances will cover the costs of breast reduction due to health risks and discomfort in the woman.

A woman’s abdomen can cause a “belly” of concerns, especially as you age or after you have been pregnant. The Andominoplasty, also the tummy tuck is another routine cosmetic surgery. The procedure is designed to flatten the abdomen by removing excess fat and skin, aiming to tighten the muscles of the abdomen wall. Duration of the surgery is two to five hours. The extent of the surgery determines the in/out patient time. The surgery is not without the following painful side effects and possible life threatening risks:
  • Temporary soreness
  • Swelling and bruising
  • Numbness of the abdominal skin
  • Fatigue for several weeks or months
  • Blood clots
  • Infection
  • Bleeding under the skin flap

This method will not only trim your tummy, but will surely trim your bank account at the sum of $4000 to $5000.

Suction-Assisted Lipectomy or Liposuction is a procedural cosmetic surgery for the all over body approach. The procedure is used to improve body shape by removing excess and resistant fat deposits with a tube and vacuum device. Prior to surgery, the targeted fat cells are infused with a saline solution and a local anesthetic to reduce bruising and swelling. The common locations for liposuction include above breasts, upper arms, buttocks, hips, thighs, knees, calves, ankles, chin, cheeks and neck. The process does not exceed two hours and is usually an out patient procedure. The side effects are similar to the tummy tuck. The risks are much different than the tummy tuck:
  • Asymmetry
  • Rippling or bagginess of skin
  • Pigmentation changes
  • Fluid retention
  • Excessive fluid loss leading to shock
  • Infection
Despite the possible side effects and risk following the surgery, you are able to return to work in 1 to 2 weeks. With a sensible diet and exercise, you are able to have permanent result from this procedure. Although a positive outcome, the price for this surgery will suction a fat $2000 to $3000 from your account.

Let’s face it. If you want to change the look of your body through cosmetic surgery, it is going to cost you a sizeable amount of money. Facial changes will range from $400 to $5000. The large range in cost includes anything from injections to build and tighten the skin to the surgeon actually cutting and sculpting your facial features.

It is a pricey investment with risky outcomes. Despite the physical side effects that can occur, one can only imagine the emotional impact should your expected outcome not turn out as planned. Before you invest, cut, inject, sculpt take a long look in the mirror because what you see might not be all that bad.