Today, the range of noninvasive and non-surgical choices available to cosmetic patients is wider than ever. Many procedures can be performed in less than an hour, and require small amounts of anesthesia. In these cases, the day of a procedure is just another item on a daily scheduler, sandwiched between morning coffee and afternoon errands.
But other popular procedures, such as liposuction, facelift and tummy tuck, are still major surgery, and the fast-approaching date on the calendar can intensify lingering anxieties. Here, experienced Miami plastic surgeon Dr. Christopher Craft suggests ways to prepare mentally and emotionally for your surgery, allaying all fears well in advance of this important day.
Answering the “What Ifs”
Patients who worry about an upcoming procedure often focus on the potential for a disappointing outcome. Such failures are typically the result of a patient and doctor going too far, seeking an unrealistic transformation when a moderate approach is the best choice. Plastic surgery performed by a gifted surgeon should enhance your appearance, not remake your identity.
The best prescription for calming nerves is knowledge. Keeping yourself informed is an important aspect of preparing yourself for surgery. Learning as much as you can about your procedure, and asking your doctor questions, reduces apprehension and breeds reassurance. Dr. Craft takes the time to answer every question a patient may have, providing a thorough understanding of how the procedure will be performed and the results that may be expected.
Perspectives on Pain
Some plastic surgery fears are more specific. For example, issues of pain and possible scarring are top concerns. Dr. Craft is skilled at minimizing scarring, precisely placing each incision and consulting with you well in advance of a procedure to understand your preferences.
In breast augmentation procedures, for example, there are a variety of ways an implant can be inserted under the muscle and skin, and each requires its own unique type of incision. With tummy tuck, the incision can be made low on the abdomen, below the bikini line for women.
Effective pain management is also a priority for Dr. Craft. In the past decade there have been incredible advances in anesthetic techniques, and his practice offers all the latest options. Minor procedures may require only localized numbing. For more complex procedures, you will typically be given a sedative when you arrive for your surgery, and later a stronger pain management medication through an IV.
Controlling the pain doesn’t stop with the completion of the surgical procedure. You will receive additional medication through the IV, and Dr. Craft may also implant Exparel, a time-release sedative that eases discomfort for as long as three days. You will also receive prescriptions for oral medications such as Valium, which is useful in managing muscle pain with major procedures such as breast surgery and tummy tuck.
If you would like more information on plastic surgery choices and procedures, schedule a personal consultation with experienced Miami plastic surgeon Dr. Christopher Craft today.