Plastic surgeons thrive on seeing their patients’ happy faces when the moment of the reveal hits. As the bandages come off and the patient sees his or her improved body or facial feature, that gleeful smile can make a surgeon’s day.
Sometimes, patients become so desperate to have plastic surgery that they are willing to risk their health by keeping vital information from their surgeon. It’s never worth it.
The following five subjects are important to a plastic surgeon. Make sure you are open and honest about all of them.
Is There a History of Clots in Your Family?
One complication of any surgery is the risk for blood clots. If you or anyone in your family experiences blood clots, your surgeon must know. If a clot forms in a blood vessel after your surgery, it can lead to a blockage that decreases blood flow to other organs or extremities or breaks loose and travels to the lungs, heart, or brain and lead to death.
Do You Smoke?
Ask any doctor about smoking and you’ll hear it’s bad for you and that you need to quit. This is especially true before plastic surgery, or any surgery for that matter. If you smoke or are regularly exposed to secondhand smoke, you have to be honest with your plastic surgeon. During plastic surgery, smoking impedes blood supply to the tissue. With incisions already affecting the blood supply to some areas, smoking can really wreak havoc.
ABC News reported a story where an experienced plastic surgeon, while performing a breast lift, spotted his patient’s nipples turning purple. This was a clear sign that blood was not flowing properly and if the skin turned black, the dead tissue would have to be surgically removed.
Listen carefully to your plastic surgeon’s advice and stop smoking at least three or four weeks prior to your surgery. You also need to refrain from starting back up for weeks following your surgery to allow your body to heal properly. If you know you cannot handle this, plastic surgery is not a good option for you.
What Herbal Supplements Do You Use?
Patients often think of herbal supplements as being natural and completely safe. As a result, they don’t always think it is necessary to tell their plastic surgeon about their use of these supplements. It is essential that you tell your surgeon about any medication or supplement you take, including herbs.
Some herbs, such as garlic, ginger, and ginseng, can cause bleeding. Kava and valerian root increase the effects of anesthesia. Goldenseal and licorice affect blood pressure. Even St. John’s wort needs to be avoided before and after a surgery because it can alter the effects of drugs given to you during and after a surgical procedure.
Do You Use Over the Counter Medications or Vitamins?
Pain killers like aspirin and ibuprofen increase the risk of prolonged bleeding. These medications impact blood clotting and therefore can make it harder for blood to clot following a surgery. If you take aspirin and cannot stop taking it for a few weeks, you need to reconsider undergoing plastic surgery.
During your consultation, bring up the subject with your plastic surgeon and see how he or she feels about performing a cosmetic surgery on someone on a daily aspirin regimen. Being told no is better than bleeding too much during or after a surgery.
Vitamin E is a supplement that also increases bleeding risks during and after surgery. If you take vitamin E on a regular basis, you also need to reconsider the surgery or be willing to stop using the supplement a few weeks before and after your surgery.
Have You Had a Past Reaction to Anesthesia?
If you’ve ever had a reaction to anesthesia, even a mild reaction, you must tell your doctor. A Miami woman left that piece of information out when she had her consultation with her plastic surgeon. Her heart rate fell during the surgery, and she ended up in a coma.
A year later, she still requires 24-hour nursing care. Telling her plastic surgeon may have ruined her chances for the breast augmentation she desired, but today she’s unable to walk and is barely able to talk.
The Masri Clinic for Laser and Cosmetic Surgery offer a range of body and facial plastic surgeries, as well as non-surgical cosmetic treatments, in two Michigan locations. Browse through their plastic surgery photo gallery to see some of the many procedures available.
During your consultation with Dr. Masri, be prepared to honestly answer questions about your health, goals, and worries. You can schedule that consultation by calling the triple board certified facial plastic surgeon at (248) 723-7188 in Birmingham or (313) 945-9800 in Dearborn.