Medical care after plastic surgery
Given the fact that plastic surgery is major and highly invasive, there is a need the patient must be careful during the recovery period. Whether you are considering butt augmentation, breast augmentation, or body contouring, these procedures involve incisions.
There are many patients who think of plastic surgery as a simple and straightforward procedure like getting a haircut. This is not true at all. Plastic surgery involves many risks and complications. Depending on your health, patients are exposed to different levels of risks during and after the procedure.
Medical care after plastic surgery
The recovery period after plastic surgery is critical to your health and the achievement of the desired aesthetic results. During this time, you need continuous medical care so that any possible problems, whether aesthetic or medical, are prevented beforehand. During the initial consultation with the plastic surgeon, be sure to ask how you can prevent the risks and what type of medical care is required.
A good and trusted plastic surgeon will also guide his patients about the recovery period and the medical care required. What type of medical care you would require depends on your overall health, how well you heal, the type of procedure, the plastic surgeon’s expertise, and the size of incisions. Below are the most important medical care instructions most plastic surgery patients are required to follow.
Most types of plastic surgery procedures require the patient to wear compression garments after the surgery. The compression garments are specially designed to keep your newly contoured body intact, reduce the post-operative swelling, prevent infections, decrease the post-operative discomforts, and speed up the healing process.
Compression garments must be worn after butt augmentation, liposuction, tummy tuck, and other major procedures. The plastic surgeon may advise you to wear compression garments for a few weeks. Be sure to follow the surgeon’s advice and wear the garments for the recommended time period.
There is no doubt that smoking is dangerous to your health; however, it can be riskier for plastic surgery patients. In order to be a good candidate for plastic surgery, you should be a non-smoker or be ready to stop smoking a few weeks before the surgery and stay a non-smoker during the recovery period. There is nicotine, tar, and carbon monoxide in the cigarette that can hamper the healing process.
After plastic surgery, you will be inactive as you rest during the recovery period. This means your blood circulation will be low, which can cause your blood to clot. Smoking can make this worse. Smoking has the tendency to trigger blood clotting, which will not only affect the healing process, prolonging it and making the wounds heal poorly, but also lead to life-threatening conditions. In order to have a smooth and safe recovery after plastic surgery, be sure to stop smoking.
Avoid strenuous activities
Engaging in physically demanding activities during the recovery period after plastic surgery can trigger medical conditions like excessive bleeding, poor wound healing, infection, implant displacements and ruptures, and abnormal scarring. After most plastic surgery procedures, the patient is required to avoid strenuous activities and take sufficient rest instead.
Strenuous physical activities can cause the wound to open up, triggering a number of medical issues. You may resume work two weeks after most plastic surgery procedures; however, if your work involves physically demanding tasks, you should take more time off work. Patients are required to avoid physically strenuous activities like running, jumping, weight lifting, pushing, etc. for six weeks following the operation.
Sleeping, sitting, and resting
If the patient is careless with sleeping, sitting, and resting, she may experience medical problems. For example, if you have undergone buttock implant surgery, you must avoid sitting for two weeks after the surgery. Sitting can trigger wound opening, bleeding, infection, and implant displacement.
When it comes to sleeping and resting, the patient must avoid sleeping and resting on the operated site. The pressure can cause the incisions to open up, which can lead to bleeding, infection, poor wound healing, and abnormal scarring. For example, if you have had a tummy tuck, do not sleep or rest on your front. Instead, you should sleep on your back and side.
After plastic surgery, you may find drain cannulas placed under the skin at the site of the surgery. The drain cannulas are meant to drain away any bloodstained fluids discharged by your body at the operation site. The cannulas will remain with you for a few days. They will be removed until the discharge falls below a certain level. The patient will be required to keep an eye on the drain cannula and note the level of discharge collected.
If the drain cannula is not placed, there is a risk the patient may experience seroma and hematoma. Seroma is a condition whereby the fluids discharged from the body get trapped under the skin at the site of operation. On the other hand, hematoma is a condition when blood discharged from damaged or injured blood vessels accumulates under the skin at the surgery site. Drain cannulas carry away the fluids and blood, preventing seroma and hematoma.
Preventing infections and incision care
The risk of infection after plastic surgery is greater. Your body is bruised, and there are incisions which increase the possibility for your body to contract potential infections. In order to prevent infections, you must be extra watchful. Do not touch the incisions and don’t let any unauthorized person touch it except the medical staff.
When an infection occurs, it can lead to many health problems and even be life-threatening. Mild to moderate infection after plastic surgery can be treated with oral antibiotics. Your plastic surgeon may prescribe you to take antibiotics after the operation. Be sure to take the antibiotics according to the instruction and for the recommended time period. They are meant to protect you from possible infections.
When a serious infection occurs, you may need to be admitted to a hospital for treatment. In this case, you may be administered IV antibiotics. Some deep infections can also trigger the need for additional surgeries. For example, if you underwent butt implant surgery and the implants got infected, you must undergo surgery to remove the implants and have the area disinfected.
The plastic surgeon’s instructions are critical for a smooth and safe recovery after plastic surgery. If you fail to follow the instructions, your risks of medical problems will rise. Be sure to follow each and every instruction of the surgeon to the letter. Should you experience any problem, contact your surgeon immediately.
Use of medications
There are many patients who start taking different medicines without asking the plastic surgeon. Doing so can be life-threatening for you. Never take any drugs without consulting with your doctor. For example, if you start taking aspirin after plastic surgery, you may experience bleeding at the incision, which can cause medical problems and lead to poor aesthetic outcomes.
After plastic surgery, the doctor may prescribe you certain medications. What types of medicines you may get depends on your health and the type of surgery. Painkillers are normally recommended for all plastic surgery patients. If your immune system is weak, the plastic surgeon may prescribe you antibiotics to protect you from infections.
Swelling, scarring, and discomforts
Swelling, scarring, and discomforts are absolutely normal after plastic surgery; however, when they exceed the normal level, you should consult with your plastic surgeon. Swelling occurs as a normal reaction of your body to the surgical trauma. The swelling will subside over the next few weeks or months. If the swelling expands beyond the site of surgery or prolongs and is accompanied by pain, contact your doctor because it can be a sign of complications.
The incisions will turn into scar over the coming weeks. Normal scars will gradually fade and become less visible. There is a risk the scars may become abnormal and more visible. For example, if you expose the surgery areas to direct sunlight or heat during the four months following the surgery, the scars may become abnormal.
You may experience pain and discomfort for the first 24-72 hours following the surgery. The pain will subside and disappear. However, if it prolongs and becomes intense, you should contact your surgeon.
After plastic surgery, there is a greater need for medical care. Your body is cut, bruised, and traumatized, and you need to be careful to heal smoothly and safely. What you can do to reduce the risks and recover properly has been discussed in detail in this article. Be sure to discuss with your surgeon ways to avoid medical emergencies and complications after plastic surgery.