Cosmetic Surgery - Medical Malpractice Lawyers Compensation Claim

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Cosmetic Surgery

Cosmetic surgery is often referred to as plastic surgery except that the former implies less invasive procedures than true “plastic surgery”. It is a medical specialty concerned with the correction or restoration of the body. The body can undergo treatment of ageing, reconstructive surgery, microsurgery, hand surgery, burn surgery and skin resurfacing.

Cosmetic surgery has a long history. There is evidence out of ancient Egypt indicating a broken nose was repaired. This dated from 3000 BC to 2500 BC. Reconstructive surgery was in evidence as early as 800 BC in India. Sanskrit work in cosmetic surgery was translated into Arabic in 750 AD and then into European languages so that Italian surgeons become familiar with some ancient plastic surgery techniques. The most common procedure done in those times was the rhinoplasty. The Romans also performed plastic surgery around the first century AD. They repaired damaged ears and noses.

Because of the dangers of doing surgery, real advances weren’t made until the 19th and 20th centuries. What was necessary was the patient having sufficient anesthesia in order to avoid pain during the procedures.

Up until the modern techniques of surgeries, doing surgery on healthy tissues involved a great deal of pain; infection was finally reduced when sterile techniques were introduced. Antibiotics made it much safer to have elective surgery like cosmetic surgery.

Common Procedures

One common procedure in plastic surgery is skin grafting. This is the transfer of skin tissue from one place to another. There are three types of skin grafts:

  • Autografts involve skin taken from the same person to the same person. These are usually very successful and involve a low risk of rejection. You can also use cultured sheets of epithelial cells in the absence of normal tissue.
  • Allografts are taken from a donor of the same species. It won’t last forever but it covers open areas for a good period of time until normal human skin from the same person has a chance to grow.
  • Xenografts. This involves skin taken from another species. This lasts the least long of all the skin grafts but has a purpose for the short term.

Liposuction is another common procedure. It involves the use of a cannula inserted into the area where fat is to be removed. Using a suction device, large amounts of fat are removed and the area is sculpted so that it is smooth and much thinner than before. Liposuction can be done on the face, abdomen, buttocks and thighs primarily.

Face lifts and the like are ways a person can look younger. The face lift involves lifting the skin of the upper and/or lower face and pulling it into the hair line. Then the excess skin is trimmed off and the face looks smoother and younger. This is a tricky procedure that can dramatically alter the person’s appearance afterwards.

Common procedures in cosmetic surgery in today’s time are minimally invasive medical procedures. A common technique is laser resurfacing. The laser uses heat that stimulates the production of collagen so that eventually the skin is firm and looks younger. It can take several months for the collagen to be completely grown.

Reconstructive plastic surgery is common as well. This is done to correct impairments caused by trauma, burns and injuries like facial bone fractures, congenital abnormalities like cleft palate and cleft lip, developmental abnormalities, cancer, tumors and infection. It is designed to improve function but mostly it is designed to approximate normal appearance.

One of the most common reconstructive surgeries includes removal of tumor, laceration repair, hand surgery, breast reduction and scar repair. A number of breast reduction surgeries are done on men. The number of male breast reduction surgeries increased to over 68,000 procedures performed in 2012. Another reconstructive surgery done is a breast reconstruction following a mastectomy for cancer.

Still other reconstructive procedures include contracture surgery for burn survivors or creating a new outer ear when the ear was congenitally absent. Free flaps of skin are used to cover areas of skin that are lost due to infection or trauma. Sometimes areas of skin are removed from one body site to another to treat burn sites. The skin is specially treated to lie onto the burned area so that the new skin can grow into the area where the allograft skin is placed onto he burned part.

Cosmetic Surgery

When it isn’t called “reconstructive surgery” it is called cosmetic surgery. Cosmetic surgery is performed on normal skin for the express purpose of improving a person’s appearance or reducing the signs of ageing. A total of 11 million cosmetic surgery procedures were done on people in 2006. It has increased by 50 percent since the year 2000. The five most common procedures done on people in cosmetic surgery include the following:

  • Breast augmentation, which is enlarging the appearance of the breasts
  • Liposuction which involves taking fatty tissue out of the body and sculpting the area
  • Nasal surgery, designed to change the appearance of the nose
  • Eyelid surgery as a way of decreasing wrinkles or looking less Asian in some cases
  • Abdominoplasty, which is a way of reconstructing the way the abdomen looks

The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery studies thirty-four different cosmetic surgery procedures. Nineteen of the total were surgical and include a nose job or facelift. The rest of the procedures were non-surgical and include laser hair removal and Botox. A total of 81 percent of the procedures were performed on Caucasians.

Other cosmetic plastic surgery procedures include the phalloplasty which is reconstruction of the penis, breast implants, which use saline or silicone breast prosthetics, reduction mammoplasty, in which the person has breast reduction by means of liposuction and sculpting. A mastopexy can be done to lift the breast that is sagging. It essentially reshapes the breast and removes some breast tissue.

A buttock augmentation is a popular procedure with enhancement of the buttocks using silicone implants or fat grafting (called a Brazilian butt lift) that makes the buttocks look “sexier”. A chemical peel can be done, which uses glycolic acid, trichoracetic acid or phenolic acid among others to get rid of acne scars, chicken pox scars and other scars, as well as removing small wrinkles.

Cosmetic surgery can be mild or extreme in nature but it carries what is sometimes an unnecessary risk because these are not necessary procedures but they can carry risk of infection, bleeding, or a botched surgery that doesn’t turn out the way the patient expected.

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