Modern Myths of Plastic Surgery: Fact vs Fiction


Debunking the Myths of Plastic Surgery

Plastic surgery is largely becoming a cultural norm, integrating into our everyday lives across media. From reality television to magazine covers and documentaries, the public has never been more aware of the ways that plastic surgery impacts patients.

It is often a glimpse into the glamorous world of plastic surgery, but in fact, plastic surgery is a medical specialty with highly-trained physicians specializing in reconstructive surgeries and treatments.

Here’s the truth behind common misconceptions about plastic surgery to help guide and set expectations.

Myth 1: Plastic Surgery and Cosmetic Surgery? Same Deal

The field of plastic surgery includes cosmetic surgery, but they are not one of the same. Plastic surgery includes reconstructive surgery, while cosmetic surgery is focused on aesthetics.

Reconstructive surgery, more specifically, has the additional purpose of repairing a birth defect or damage from trauma or disease.

Additionally, all plastic and cosmetic surgeons do not have the same training. Plastic surgeons must have completed 4 years of medical school, 5 to 6 years of medical residency with training in both general surgery and plastic surgery, and passed the certification exam from the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

Cosmetic surgeons must have completed 4 years of medical school, 4 to 6 years of medical residency in one of these specialties (ear, nose and throat), plastic surgery, dermatology, or ophthalmology, and completed a 1- to 2-year cosmetic surgery fellowship (advanced research and training).

Myth 2: Plastic Surgery is All About Beauty and Vanity

Although plastic surgery encompasses rhinoplasty, Botox and facelifts, plastic surgery is inclusive of everything from correcting birth defects such as cleft palates to post-cancer breast reconstruction and work-related hand injuries.

Plastic surgery is based on the philosophy and practice of repair, functionality and overall results after surgery, not just aesthetics.

Myth 3: Plastic Surgery is Only for Women

Although women are traditionally the majority in plastic surgery, men are turning to plastic surgery in increasing numbers. Procedures such as Botox, laser treatments and facial fillers can give men a rejuvenated and naturally youthful appearance with little to no downtime at relatively low costs.

In addition to these, liposuction is also one of the most popular surgery treatments sought out by men.

Myth 4: Liposuction Helps You Lose Weight and Cellulite

Liposuction is not a weight-loss procedure. Liposuction contours the body by removing fat cells. Weight gain can easily put the fat back on, and sometimes in different places if consistent exercise and dietary changes are not maintained.

Liposuction does not remove cellulite, but it works best if you are within 30% of your ideal weight and have good muscle tone.

Myth 5: Plastic Surgery Leaves No Scars and Lasts Forever

While plastic surgery can make scars look better, more refined and smaller, all types of plastic surgery will generally result in some type of scar formation. The best way to minimize scarring is to follow through with pre-operative and post-operative care and instructions. For example, smoking can compromise your ability to heal well from the surgery.

If you do smoke, your surgeon may instruct you to quit smoking weeks in advance to the procedure, if not all together.

Plastic surgery is long lasting and can give you years, but it is not designed to last forever. Depending on individual care and follow through, many factors can determine how long the results will last.

Great skincare, less-invasive office procedures, surgical touch-ups, lifestyle and overall health are all important components to maintaining your results. In short, plastic surgery can turn back the hands of time, but the clock keeps on ticking.

Plastic Surgery or Cosmetic Surgery? Schedule a Consultation

If you are considering plastic surgery, understanding the full scope of the procedure is important. Debunking these common myths of plastic surgery will get you started. To learn more, schedule a consultation with Dr. Binder today.

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