Cosmetic surgery, like any other surgical procedure, carries potential risks and complications. It’s important that patients understand these risks and complications before committing to any cosmetic surgery.
Here are some general risks associated with cosmetic surgery:
- Infection: As with any surgical procedure, there is a significant risk of infection. While post-operative care often involves a course of antibiotics, these are not guaranteed to prevent an infection.
- Bruising: After surgery, you may notice bruising around the surgical area. This is caused by blood that has leaked out of the blood vessels under the skin. The extent of bruising can vary depending on the procedure and the individual’s healing characteristics. Most bruising will fade over a few weeks.
- Swelling: Swelling or edema is a normal response to surgery. It’s caused by fluid that accumulates in the tissues after surgery. Swelling usually peaks around 48 hours after the procedure and then gradually decreases. However, some swelling may persist for several weeks or even months, particularly for more extensive procedures.
- Pain: Significant pain is common after surgery and can vary greatly depending on the specific procedure and the individual’s pain tolerance.
- Scarring: All surgeries result in some degree of scarring, which can be significant. The extent and visibility of scars can vary greatly depending on the specific procedure and individual healing characteristics.
- Bleeding and Hematoma: Hematoma is a pocket of blood that resembles a large, painful bruise. It occurs in up to 6% of breast augmentation procedures and is the most common complication after a facelift.
- Seroma: A seroma is a condition that occurs when serum from your blood pools beneath the surface of the skin, causing swelling and pain. It’s most common after a tummy tuck, but it can occur after other types of cosmetic surgeries too.
- Nerve Damage: Numbness and tingling are common after cosmetic and plastic surgery and can be signs of nerve damage. Most women experience a change in sensitivity after breast augmentation surgery, and 15% of those women experience permanent changes in nipple sensation.
- Anesthesia Complications: Anesthesia is the use of medication to make you unconscious and unable to feel pain. Complications from anesthesia can include lung infection, stroke, heart attacks, and death. More minor complications include confusion and short-term memory loss.
- Blood Clots: Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE) are risks with any surgical procedure. They occur when blood clots form in large veins of the legs or pelvis and can travel to the lungs, causing severe illness, disability, and in some cases, death.
- Psychological Impact: Cosmetic surgery can have a significant psychological impact. Some people may experience changes in their self-esteem, depression, or dissatisfaction with the results.
- Unsatisfactory Results: There’s always a chance that the cosmetic procedure might not produce the results you expected. You might need additional surgery to achieve your desired look.
- Organ Damage: Liposuction can be traumatic for internal organs. Visceral perforations or punctures can occur when the surgical probe comes into contact with internal organs. Repairing these injuries can require additional surgery.
Each of these risks can vary in severity and likelihood depending on the specific procedure and the individual patient’s health status.
It’s important to discuss these risks thoroughly with your cosmetic surgeon before deciding to proceed with any cosmetic procedure. Your surgeon can provide more detailed information specifically tailored to your health status and the specific procedure you’re considering.
It’s also important to follow your surgeon’s post-operative care instructions to help manage these side effects. This may include instructions on taking prescribed medications, using cold compresses to reduce swelling, elevating the surgical area when possible, and limiting physical activity.
If you experience severe or worsening pain, excessive swelling, or the bruising doesn’t start to fade after a couple of weeks, these could be signs of a complication. Other potential signs of complications can include [provide detailed list of potential signs of complications]. If you experience any of these, you should contact your healthcare provider immediately.
Recovery from cosmetic surgery can vary greatly between individuals and depends on the specific procedure. Your surgeon from the Me Clinic or any medical practitioner should be informed as soon as possible of any complications or concerns that develop after surgery. It’s important to follow all post-operative care instructions and to allow yourself ample time to recover.
“The Medical Practitioner’s Board of Victoria requires that advertisements for cosmetic surgical procedures carry the following”: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.
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