Pondering Plastic Surgery? I am!
Lately I've been pondering about getting a cosmetic procedure known as abdominoplasty (tummy tuck). Unfortunately after my first pregnancy I was stricken with the mother of all stretched out bellies; I'm not just talking stretch marks, I'm talking loose hanging skin! I had a condition known as polyhydramnios. This fairly rare problem in pregnancy causes the womb to fill up with too much amnionic fluid and stretches the uterus and therefore the abdominal wall. By the ninth month I had a girth the size of someone who was carrying triplets. After my daughter was born the doctor told me right at the outset the only thing I could do would be to have plastic surgery.
No amount of stretch mark cream and exercise was ever going to get my long lost abs back. My well muscled six-pack abs were now six feet under and pushing up daisies. Not only was my skin stretched to the max, my muscles had torn as well. That was 24 years ago and I'm still kicking around the idea of succumbing to the knife. I've had a couple of consultations with cosmetic surgeons who've all agreed I'm the perfect candidate, but I just can't seem to take that step of scheduling the surgery. Having heard the horrible news of rapper Kanye West's mother (Donda West) recently dying after a plastic surgery I am now even more unsure than ever. Part of me knows that any surgery is dangerous and there is always the possibility of unwanted consequences and complications, but it seems I keep hearing more and more about plastic surgery gone wrong. Perhaps it's because there are now so many more cosmetic procedures than days past, that we are bound to hear more about problems and complications including death. I decided I would do some research on safety and see what we can do as patients to keep us well informed to make good choices when it comes to elective surgery. I found a valuable article on a website called Skincare News, entitled "Skincare Alert: Chasing Plastic Surgery…at any Cost?"The author offers some basic steps and questions to ask and follow before signing on the dotted line to consent to surgery:
Use resources such as the Internet, magazines and your library.
Get referrals from friends, family and your family doctor.
Talk to people you've known who have had successful cosmetic surgeries and perhaps get a consult from their doctor.
Check out the surgeon's website once you get a name.
Check for board certification in the field of plastic surgery.
Check for valid license in the state or country where you're planning your surgery.
Make sure the surgeon has hospital privileges.
Check for malpractice history.
Verify training and credentials.
Choose a surgeon who specializes in the procedure you want.
Be sure his or her malpractice insurance has proper coverage.
Ask the surgeon about any special training he or she has had as well as if they continue to do on-going continual medical education. You may even want to ask them about their success rate, complications, realistic outcomes, and rate of infection.
Write down a list of questions before you go to the consultation and be sure to also give him or her your complete medical history.
Give yourself a few days before making your decision.
I was thinking. Perhaps we could make this list even larger. Do any of you have anything else to add to this list? It would be so cool to get a whole section of the blog dedicated to plastic surgery so that we can all feel a little more informed before taking that step. And then when and if we do decide to go for it, the goal would be to not only look gorgeous but to know we had the power and confidence to do it right! We'll call ourselves "The Empowered Beauty Researchers of Plastic Surgery!"