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Steps in Cosmetic Surgery: Closure

September 17th, 2012

13.8 million cosmetic plastic surgery procedures were performed in the United States in 2011, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS).  There are four universal steps to follow for all cosmetic procedure involving surgery.   As I have previously discussed so far, step one is incision, followed by dissection and sculpting.   This brings us to discussion of the final step, which is wound closure.

In elective cosmetic surgery cases, taking extra time to do an aesthetic closure is possible.  The first phase in wound closure is suturing (sewing) the skin and deeper tissues back together, also known as tissue approximation.   How well this is done will determine the physical appearance of the scar.  


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Revision Surgery: When to Consider

March 21st, 2011

All surgeons want you to have the best result possible after any surgery.  Additionally, plastic surgeons want their patients to also look better.     I believe that the aesthetic nature of plastic and reconstructive medical training, appeals to people drawn to the artistry and sculpting of this particular specialty.  While cosmetic surgery can offer patients significant improvements in their appearance, unfortunately, perfect results are not possible.  Our bodies are not symmetric and individual anatomy differs from one person to the next.   Variations in surgical results do occur.

Some results are better than others.   There are many factors that contribute to a less than desirable result.   These may include, surgical problems, or not following strict after-care instructions, which may lead to unwanted bleeding or infection. Recovery is not the same for everyone and we all heal differently.   Some patients make more scar tissue, which may contribute to imperfect results after surgery.

When should surgery be revised for an unsatisfactory result?   This relates to internal healing.   Internal healing like scar maturation takes from 6 months to a year.   During this recovery period, dramatic changes take place, often revealing the expected appearance.   In my experience, some unsatisfied patients are a little impatient and perhaps too quick to judge.   It takes time and patience to see final results with most cosmetic surgery results.   However, if after 6 months there is not significant improvement, I suggest visiting with your surgeon about the possibility of revision (redoing) surgery.

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