Many people don’t know that one of the most important parts of the plastic surgery experience actually has nothing to do with the “new you” and everything to do with the “old you.” I’m talking about your health history, and it matters!
Before having breast augmentation, liposuction, facelift surgery, or other cosmetic procedures, you should always be open about your overall condition and provide detailed information about past surgeries, issues, or treatments.
As a board-certified plastic surgeon here in Albany, it is my job first and foremost to protect your safety and well-being. February is American Heart Month, so I wanted to take the time to share a few things you should always bring up during your consultation:
- Your heart history: There are risks that come along with any kind of surgery, cosmetic or not. If you have a history of heart problems, those risks are greater. For example, people with heart disease are at a higher risk of developing a blood clot after surgery. Also, anesthesia may not be recommended for those with heart conditions. Because your own history is unique, you can expect to have a lengthy discussion with your plastic surgeon about any risks and whether the benefits of surgery outweigh those risks.
- Whether you are taking any medications. This may seem like a “no-brainer,” but even many over-the-counter medications should be avoided before surgery because of the potential impact on your blood flow. Before your consultation, make a list of any medications and even supplements so you don’t leave any out during your appointment.
- Whether you smoke or drink alcohol. If you smoke, use nicotine products, or drink alcohol, you have a higher risk for problems during and after surgery. These habits can also impair the body’s ability to heal. You will likely need to stop smoking for a period of time before and after your procedure, and of course I always recommend kicking the habit completely for the sake of your overall health.
Your board-certified plastic surgeon will give you advice specific to your own body and will explain any potential risks that may come along with your surgery. Remember: During your consultation, honesty is the best policy. If you’d like to view our online medical history form, it is available on our website.