Many people turn to plastic surgery as a way to feel more comfortable in their own skin. But whether you’re looking to contour your body, tighten loose skin, get rid of stubborn fat, or improve the shape and size of your breasts, you need an experienced, board certified plastic surgeon to help you safely achieve your goals.
There are some factors to consider in terms of your own readiness for surgery. From weight to lifestyle to health conditions, here are some frequently asked questions we regularly field at our Houston plastic surgery practice.
BMI is not the only factor we consider when it comes to cosmetic surgery—and being overweight may not disqualify you from having a procedure.
Is my BMI too high for cosmetic surgery?
For years, Body Mass Index (BMI) was used to make inferences about a patient’s overall health. In recent years, however, our understanding of body fat and health has become more nuanced and using BMI as a primary determinant has fallen out of favor. While BMI is still calculated, it is not the only factor we consider when it comes to cosmetic surgery—and being overweight may not disqualify you from having a procedure.
During your consultation, Dr. Basu will discuss your medical history with you and order lab tests as needed to ensure moving forward with your desired procedures will be safe. If you are in good physical and mental health and surgery is deemed safe, there are many procedures you can choose from to improve the way you look and feel, including plus-size tummy tucks, breast reductions or breast lifts, arm lifts, and double chin treatment.
Am I too old for plastic surgery?
In most cases, the answer is no! Many older adults want to improve their bodies as they age, and cosmetic surgery can be a safe option whether you are 30 or 70. Provided you are in overall good health, studies have shown that older patients are at no higher risk for surgical complications than younger patients.
However, to help ensure your safety, you must let your plastic surgeon know of any underlying health conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, that could complicate your surgery or healing.
The other key to having successful plastic surgery at a more mature age is having realistic expectations. Factors such as skin elasticity will play a role in your final results. Look closely at before and after photos of patients that are in your age range to get a more realistic idea of what you can expect.
Nicotine constricts your blood vessels, and good blood flow and oxygenation is essential for tissue and skin survival.
Can I have plastic surgery with high blood pressure?
As long as your blood pressure is under control, yes, you can have plastic surgery. There are medications and lifestyle changes that can help patients keep blood pressure within a safe range and make them eligible for cosmetic procedures.
If your blood pressure is not being managed, however, you will need to take action before surgery can be scheduled—overly high blood pressure can complicate surgery, put you at a greater risk of surgical or post-surgical complications, and impact your ability to heal.
Can I have plastic surgery if I smoke?
For the best possible results, no, you should not smoke if you want to have plastic surgery. Not only that, you should avoid all forms of nicotine, including vaping, gum, or patches. Nicotine constricts your blood vessels, and good blood flow and oxygenation is essential for tissue and skin survival. If you smoke before or after surgery, you put yourself at greater risk for complications including blot clots, scarring, infection, and loss of skin—not to mention risking the quality of your results and scar healing.
While giving up smoking for good is an ideal choice for overall health, we understand how difficult it can be to make that change. Dr. Basu recommends avoiding nicotine for at least two weeks before and after your procedure.
While all surgery comes with risks, cosmetic surgery is a feasible option for most people as long as other health conditions are well managed.
Can diabetics have cosmetic surgery?
High blood sugar levels affect blood circulation and wound healing, and not all diabetics can have cosmetic surgery. That said, if your blood sugar is well-controlled, your overall health is good, and safety precautions are taken, cosmetic surgery can still be an option, even if you have diabetes.
Your plastic surgeon will have specific criteria that must be met and will also speak to your endocrinologist; together they can create a plan for surgery and recovery that takes diabetes management into consideration.
Can I have cosmetic surgery while breastfeeding?
In many cases, it is safe to have cosmetic surgery while breastfeeding. Even under general anesthesia, by the time you are awake and alert, most of the medication is out of your system and will not pose a threat to your breastfeeding baby.
Be sure to let your surgeon know that you are breastfeeding before you schedule a procedure and ask about any medications that may be prescribed so you can ensure they’re safe. If there are lifting restrictions following your surgery, you may want to pump or have someone help you while breastfeeding.
That being said, we do not recommend scheduling a procedure until at least six months after childbirth. Your body needs adequate time to recover before being put under additional stress. Additionally, being sleep-deprived and coping with a newborn would make it hard to have an ideal surgery and recovery experience.
Get all of your questions answered during a private consultation
While all surgery comes with risks, cosmetic surgery is a feasible option for most people as long as any health conditions are well managed. Dr. Basu has safely performed thousands of procedures on men and women of all ages, shapes, and sizes, helping them to achieve the look and self-confidence they desire. Contact Basu Aesthetics + Plastic Surgery to learn more and create a plan that fits your goals.