If you are seriously considering a plastic surgery intervention, be it aesthetic or reconstructive, you probably have a lot of questions. While researching online can help you acquire a better understanding of what plastic surgery is all about, your plastic surgeon would still be your best resource that can clearly explain the details and address your lingering concerns. Before you go to your consultation, it is best to know what to ask. Here are some important questions you might want to ask your plastic surgeon: 1. How can plastic surgery help me? Plastic surgery and its procedures involve techniques that can change, enhance, augment, contour, rejuvenate and repair certain imperfections and flaws in face and body. Plastic surgery can definitely help you improve your overall appearance, depending on your personal desires and needs and the expected results after the procedure. The motivations to undergo these procedures should be either subjective (psychological) or objective (the necessity to correct certain imperfections or defects caused by trauma, accidents, genetic factors or illnesses). 2. What is the difference between reconstructive surgery and aesthetic surgery? The main difference is the motivation and the necessity of the intervention. – Aesthetic surgery is used to remodel normal features of the body with the end view of improving the appearance of the patient, which translates into a boost in confidence and self-esteem. The decision to undergo this type of plastic surgery is a personal one. – Reconstructive surgery is used to correct defects or imperfections caused by several factors, genetic or otherwise, with the purpose of improving the functionality of the body or to provide a normal appearance of the body’s structures. 3. What is minimally invasive plastic surgery? Minimally invasive plastic surgery uses advanced technologies to perform surgical interventions using small incisions to reduce the pain that the patient will experience, as well as shorten the recovery time and minimize the risks of the interventions. Liposuction is an example of a minimally invasive plastic surgery procedure that can remove stubborn fat deposits and resculpt and recontour the body to create a better and more aesthetically pleasing shape. Small incisions measuring about 4-5 mm will be performed to introduce the cannula that is used to dislodge and suction the fat. The fat transfer procedures are also minimally invasive and have a short recovery time but can provide impressive results. After a minimally invasive plastic surgery intervention, which are usually done on outpatient basis, the patient can resume daily activities even a day after the surgery and return to work in less than a week. 4. How long will be the recovery period after a plastic surgery intervention? The recovery time depends first on the type of procedure performed, the area that was treated and the body’s ability to heal. Keep in mind that with aging, the healing process is slower. Generally, recovery would take from 2 to 10 days. Surgical interventions like liposuction, breast augmentation and eyelid surgery will take from 5 to 7 days recovery period while a tummy tuck or a body lift procedure might take up to 2 weeks. Your plastic surgeon will provide you with a more exact estimate during the initial consultation. 5. Will the results and effects of plastic surgery be obvious? This will depend on the type of surgical treatment that is performed. The change will immediately be obvious for a breast augmentation surgery, but, in most procedures, people around you will just notice that there is something different about you but will be unable to pinpoint exactly what. Of course, if you will go from an A-cup to a D-cup in one sitting, people will know you had a breast augmentation with implants. Generally speaking, the results won’t be dramatic, but they can be more noticeable when the procedures correct some obvious imperfections or greatly improve the appearance of the patient. It is also important to keep in mind that during the first days of recovery, there will be visible signs of a plastic surgery intervention such as swelling, bruising and some physical discomforts. 6. What can you tell me about the pain after plastic surgery? The new operating techniques in performing some of the plastic surgery interventions involve a reduced level of pain. It can be described as something like a moderate discomfort at the treated area. During the procedure, a local or general anesthetic will be administered. However, pain can still occur during the recovery period but pain relievers that your surgeon will prescribe can easily manage it. Do know that the physical and/or psychical discomforts you may experience are normal and temporary. The plastic surgery interventions that can cause the most discomfort or pain would be liposuction, tummy tuck, breast and buttocks augmentation, as well as those interventions that require the lifting or stretching of the muscles. 7. Is it possible to experience a post-operative shock? Psychical shock is defined as a negative reaction to a certain stimulus, but the patients of plastic surgery can also experience a positive shock (joy and happiness regarding the results of the intervention). Dissatisfaction happens when the person carries some unresolved emotional issues or has exaggerated or unrealistic expectations regarding the results of the procedure. 8. Will there be scars left after the plastic surgery procedure? To perform aesthetic surgery, we use both surgical and nonsurgical techniques. However, most surgical interventions require at least one incision and its length depends on the complexity of the procedure. This means that plastic surgery will leave behind scars and this is not something that can be avoided. However, the scars are usually placed in areas with less visibility or hidden within the natural folds of the body. Over time, the scars will diminish in size and will become less and less visible. Conclusion Advancements in plastic surgery operating procedures and techniques have come a long way and when the surgery is performed under proper conditions, in a well-equipped medical facility and by board-certified and experienced plastic surgeons, it practically guarantees plastic surgery to be a safe and simple procedure. However, please note that any surgical intervention entails certain risks that you should be aware of before scheduling the procedure. Make it a priority to discuss all the questions you might have about the intervention with your plastic surgeon.