Duchy Hospital’s Consultant Plastic Surgeon, Rebecca Dunlop, shares some valuable insight on the influence you have over your cosmetic surgery.
Choose your hospital and surgeon wisely
This is the most important decision you will make. There may be a choice between surgeons and they should not mind you asking for a second opinion before making a commitment. Try to find out what makes that surgeon best for you: what is their training, are they a member of a specialist organisation such as BAPRAS and/or BAAPS? When you met the surgeon, did you trust them, feel like you could ask them questions and did they listen to you or did they make you feel rushed? Find out if the surgery will be carried out in a fully equipped hospital with round-the-clock medical cover. A surgeon offering Cosmetic Surgery should see you themselves at least twice before your procedure and should ensure that you have a ‘cooling off period’ of at least 2 weeks (usually a month) between the first meeting and your surgery.
Make sure that you are in the best possible physical health and fully rested in advance of your procedure
Weight, smoking, and mental health can all have a great impact on your surgery and recovery.
Take care of your skin prior to surgery
For facial Cosmetic Surgery maintaining a good skin care regime both before and after surgery will enhance the results and is likely to make them last longer. While a surgeon may also recommend adjuvant treatments they should also explain why they feel it is necessary: you should at no point feel as though you are being ‘sold’ something extra for purely commercial reasons.
Be aware of, and realistic about, risks, potential complications and the results you want to achieve
All diligent surgeons will take every precaution to minimise risk, but it remains a fact of life that even in the best hands, complications can happen and will not always have an obvious cause. The important thing is that if something untoward does happen to you, try to stay calm and seek help from the surgeon who treated you without delay. You can also help to be prepared by thoroughly discussing expectations and risks with your surgeon during your first consultation. One of the advantages of being treated close to where you live and by a consultant based in Cornwall is that you will be able to see them more easily should anything like this happen.
Plan your recovery
The advantage of elective surgery is that you will have time to plan your support network in advance. This might entail childcare, housework, driving or just having people available for a chat and some reassurance.
In summary, as a cosmetic surgery patient, there is a lot that you can do to maximise your potential results. Having a motivated and well-informed patient is also good for the surgeon, as it will improve communication between the both of you and will ensure you share expectations and overall satisfaction with the end results.
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