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Top 5 Ways to Ruin Your Cosmetic Surgery Results

Posted: May 17, 2013
Cosmetic procedures

By James Marotta, MD

1. Divert from the recommended treatment plan

One of the main reasons you chose your cosmetic surgeon in the first place is for his/her expertise. Your surgeon wants what’s best for you and wants you to look good. He/she can evaluate your anatomy and anticipated outcome better than you can because of their experience. Yet, despite that, patients still take matters into their own hands by ignoring or diverting from the recommended treatment plan laid out for them by their surgeon. It’s a common mistake and one of the top five ways to ruin your surgery results. Numerous studies have shown that patient satisfaction with cosmetic surgery is lower when they don’t follow their recommended treatment plan given to them by their doctor. Trust the treatment plan your surgeon has prescribed and follow it!

2. Smoke

Smoking directly injures the vascular system and impedes healing. It also increases the risk of complications like scars and skin necrosis. You should not smoke. Period. It’s not good for your overall health. And if you’ve quit in order to undergo cosmetic surgery, don’t light up while you’re recovering unless you want to risk ruining your results.

3. Lay out in the sun

Sun exposure after surgery or skin resurfacing is another top no-no. Being out in the sun after procedures like laser, dermabrasion and chemical peels can lead to complications like hypo (lightening) or hyper (darkening) pigmentation of the skin. It also decreases the ability for scars to fade. So stay out of the sun as much as possible after surgery, cover up and wear your sunscreen!

4. Take supplements or medication without telling your physician

There are several common medications and supplements that can cause an increased risk of bleeding and poor wound healing, not to mention complications from anesthesia or just make recovery more difficult with something simple like stomach upset. Make sure you tell your doctor what medications and supplements you take at your pre-op and don’t take anything while you’re recovering without speaking to your physician first. And remember that just because something is herbal or “natural” doesn’t always mean that it’s safe in all circumstances.

5. Don’t disclose prior procedures to your surgeon