Friday, December 9, 2011

How Cosmetic Surgery Can Help People To Face Life Again

By Adriana Noton

Cosmetic surgery that aims to change the appearance of a person is as old as the field of medical science. Millions of patients undergo a wide variety of different procedures each year and while many of these are meant to improve the looks of the patients, by far the largest percentage aim to help those unfortunate patients that have to live with disfiguring scars and other abnormalities. This branch of medicine is extremely large and a very wide variety of procedures form part of this science.

This branch of medicine is often erroneously seen as essentially unnecessary surgery that serves no purpose other than the improvement of the looks of wealthy patients. The truth is that most of these procedures are reconstructive of nature, with the reestablishment of bodily functions as the main goal.

Just think about building new breasts for women who were forced to undergo a mastectomy, the repair of cleft lip scars and the removal of ugly excess skin after bariatric surgery. In some instances, it is even possible to reattach limbs and burn victims benefit tremendously by skin grafts.

Yet millions of cosmetics procedures are performed every year with the sole aim of improving the physical appearance of the patient. Common remedies include breast augmentation, the removal of excess skin after severe weight loss, changes to the shapes of the eyes, nose and ears and lips. Removing the visible signs of ageing is also one of the most common motivations for undergoing surgery. Opponents of such operations disdainfully dismiss them as frivolous, but advocates maintain that individuals have the right to do something about their own appearances if they wish to do so.

One of the most specialized and inspiring advances of this field is the advent of microsurgery. These procedures are so intricate and so complex that they can only be performed with the aid of a microscope. Many grateful patients will testify that were it not for these advances in science, they would never have been able to lead normal lives again. A typical operation, for example, may involve the removal of tissue from one part of the body and grafting it to the affected area. Other miracles achieved in this way include the reattachment of severed limbs and even the transplant of organs, skin and limbs from one person to another.

Extreme care should be taken when evaluating potential surgeons and medical facilities. It is vital that the doctor have extensive experience in the specific area that is under discussion. Many patients are bashful to ask references from medical experts, but it should be kept in mind that reputable professionals are never unwilling to prove their mettle. Patients should also take the trouble to learn as much as possible about the prospective procedure. It is equally important to consider all the options, as there are often alternatives available.

The results of successful surgery are not always immediately apparent. In many cases, a healing period of several weeks is required and during this time the patient has to be under close medical supervision. This may be why some patients combine surgery with a recuperation holiday. Because plastic surgery can be invasive, there is almost always some measure of bruising and swelling. Depending on the procedure, some patients may even experience considerable discomfort. Patients are ordinarily advised to avoid the sun and to keep the head and shoulders elevated at all time during the recuperation process.

There can be little doubt that cosmetic surgery can change the very way some patients function. Apart from enhancing the self image of scores of people, it is also often the only way for unfortunate people suffering from a wide variety of bodily anomalies to return to a normal life. In such cases, the psychological healing is just as important as the physical corrections that were made.

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