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The Cosmetic/Plastic Surgery Ticklist
Things to consider before undergoing cosmetic or plastic surgery surgery.
Why is it so important to ask friends for recommendations?
• Most valid referral is off course your friend who has undergone surgery with a doctor or has used services of a centre.
• Next best is referral by a doctor as they are confident about the credential of the surgeon.
• Website is also a good source particularly if they are registered with Ministry of Health in UAE.
• One could also look at the credential of a surgeon online and through various International societies, such as International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, American Society of Plastic surgeons, International Confederation for Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery and local society ie Emirates Plastic Surgery society under Emirates medical association. Etc
• In UAE all the advertisements are scrutinized by MOH so you can trust that the credentials are valid and services are legal. However that may not give any indication of how good a surgeon is. Finally most important decision is always based on personal consultation where you can see your comfort level with the surgeon.
2. RESEARCH QUALIFICATIONS
Why is this so important? Are there non-qualified surgeons / doctors known to be operating in Dubai? What qualifications should the surgeon / doctor
have? Is there any way of checking this officially? (websites etc)?
Moh laws are very stringent now and it does not allow any unqualified surgeon/ doctor to practice in UAE. When you meet the doctor you can ask for the certification. You can cross check the qualification with Ministry of health/ Emirates Medical Association/
3. WEIGH UP THE RISKS
Every cosmetic procedure has a risk. Could you tell us a little about the risk with anaesthetic and how often things could go wrong? Why should we
never go under the knife without considering these things? What kind of legal forms would we be asked to sign before procedures? Can you tell us
about the little-known risks – things people don’t often think about when having cosmetic procedures?
There are two kinds of risks- surgical and anaesthesia risks.
Surgical risks can be bleeding, infection, scarring, skin loss etc however in expert hands they are very uncommon.
Anaesthetic risks include reaction to drugs, respiratory problems etc. If a patient is healthy and the surgeon and anaesthesiologist are aware of patients medical history then again risks are very unlikely.
I personally have carried out over 5000 procedures of different grades and severity and have never had life threatening issues and any major complications. It is important that the surgeon explains all the risks, select patients based on risk benefit ratio, takes necessary precautions to prevent any complications on the other hand patient complies with the instructions provided by the surgeon and follows up with the surgeon regularly. There are various documents that the patient and surgeon has to sign that includes general/ informed consent forms, medical history form, financial agreement form etc.
4. ASK ABOUT RECOVERY TIME
Do people often forget about the recovery time? How much recovery time would you advise for the main cosmetic procedures (breast enhancement, liposuction, face lifts etc)? How will people feel when they wake up and days afterwards? How long will patients spend in hospital – and how much will they be able to do in the days / weeks that follow? How long should be booked off work for these procedures?
All the patient undergoing operations need to be informed about recovery time, pain requiring medications, rest at home, off work required, exercise and what to expect during the healing period.
Eg I explain patient for breast enlargement that they need general anaesthesia, operating time is approximately 40-50 minutes, they need overnight hospital stay, pain medications are required for 1 week, they need rest at home for 4-5 days with activities limited to personal grooming, after 10 days- 2 weeks they are back to work and 3-4 weeks they can start supervised exercise. A liposuction patient may recover earlier whereas tummy tuck may take longer time.
5. CONSIDER FOLLOW-UP PROCEDURES
Can you tell us a little about how many procedures are actually permanent – and how many will need follow-up treatments / replacements in 5/10/15 years time etc? For breast enhancements, how long is this likely to last? For lip fillers? For implants? Etc etc. Why is it so important to consider these ongoing costs – do people often forget about them?
Since body structure changes with time and lifestyle there is no treatment that can be considered permanent. Procedures like Botox and some fillers may last 4 months to 1 year depending upon multiple factors, surgeries last longer depending upon the extent and type of surgery performed. Breast augmentation is known to last for 30- 40 years, however there are different protocols depending upon type of implant, where it is placed, breast structure and changes due to aging and lifestyle.
Medical, Cosmetic & Health management are ongoing, as far as cosmetic treatment are concerned people have choice based on their requirement and affordability.
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