Plastic Surgery Skin & Beauty

A Surgeon’s Guide to Preparing for Plastic Surgery

Written by Mr Omar Tillo for Doctify

Perhaps you’ve never even considered it. On the other hand, you might be sitting in front of the mirror right now, wondering whether to book an appointment. The decision to go under the knife is a personal one and can have many different motivations. Instead of focusing on these, we instead want to take a look at how to mentally prepare for a surgery that will change your looks.

Here to tell us how to do this and whether there are people who shouldn’t be getting plastic surgery at all, is Plastic Surgeon, Mr Omar Tillo.

So, why do people get plastic surgery?

Some people ask for plastic surgery in order to reverse the effects of the time. They want to get their body back to its previous, youthful shape. Ageing, weight change, pregnancies – these all take their toll on our bodies. Some of these changes can be reversed by exercise, a healthy lifestyle and non-surgical treatments. However, there are those that can’t be corrected without surgery.

The majority of patients, however, seek plastic surgery to correct a something in their body that they don’t like. Either that or they perceive some aspect of their body as socially undesired. Examples include breasts the patient considers to be too small or too large, gynaecomastia (enlargement of male breast tissue), or prominent ears. These patients usually tinker with the idea of having surgery for a long period before they actually request it.

Is there anyone who shouldn’t go under the knife?

A classical example of someone who shouldn’t have plastic surgery is a patient with body dysmorphic disorder (BDD). These patients experience obsessive worry and excessive occupation about some aspects of their physical appearance. The flaw they perceive is usually minimal and not noticed by others. These patients will never be satisfied with plastic surgery because they will continue to notice small abnormalities and asymmetries. They will typically benefit far more from psychological help than surgery.

Another example of patients who shouldn’t have surgery are those undergoing it to please someone else, like a partner or spouse. Surgery is invasive and has short and long term consequences and should be purely the patient’s choice.

How should a patient mentally prepare for plastic surgery?

If someone is considering plastic surgery I advise them to learn about the procedure by reading and talking to people who have had similar procedures done. There are many social media platforms where patients can discuss their experiences. It’s also easy nowadays to find information online.

However, the pure volume of online information can be overwhelming. It can also sometimes be inaccurate or irrelevant to a particular case, which often causes confusion. For this reason, patients need to speak to a professional to sort the fact from the fiction. It pays to book in a few consultations and many clinics give free consultations nowadays. Even if you have to pay for a consultation it is always worth speaking to more than one surgeon.

Make sure you see the surgeon who’s actually going to do the operation for advice, not a patient coordinator or a nurse. If you decide and book to have surgery, ask to see the place where your surgery will take place and visit it. Familiarity with the place will ease a lot of the anxiety on the day of surgery.

What are the most popular cosmetic procedures at the moment?

The latest data from the British Association of Aesthetic and Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) indicates that women had 92% of all cosmetic procedures. Breast augmentation, eyelid surgery and breast reductions are the most popular in women. Rhinoplasty, otoplasty and liposuction are the most common in men. Abdominoplasty and liposuction also continue to be popular.

Any words of advice for people considering surgery?

  • Avoid what I call “mass-production” clinics or hospitals.
  • Your body is unique and so should be your surgery – in plastic surgery, one size doesn’t fit all.
  • Make sure your surgeon is familiar with various techniques and modifications of the procedure you are interested in.
  • A good surgeon is one who adapts and tailors various aspects of the procedure to meet the unique shape of you body and your specific needs.

I strongly advise patients wishing to have plastic surgery to do some reading about the topic from trusted websites before seeing a surgeon for consultation. You’ll have a better understanding of the procedure, outcome limitations and risks by having a dialogue with the surgeon and asking them all your questions.



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