What should I expect before body contouring surgery?
What should I expect during a consultation for body contouring?
During your body contouring consultation be prepared to discuss:
- Your surgical goals
- Medical conditions, drug allergies and previous medical treatments
- Current medications, vitamins, herbal supplements, alcohol, tobacco and drug use
- Previous surgeries
Your plastic surgeon will:
- Evaluate your general health and any preexisting health conditions or risk factors
- Examine your body and take detailed measurements
- Take photographs for your medical record
- Discuss your options and recommend a course of treatment
- Discuss likely outcomes of body contouring and any risks or potential complications
The success and safety of your procedure depends on your complete candidness during your consultation. Be sure to ask questions. To help, we have prepared a checklist of questions to ask your body contouring surgeon that you can take with you to your consultation.
It's very important to understand all aspects of your body contouring procedure. It's natural to feel some anxiety, whether it's excitement for your anticipated new look or a bit of preoperative stress. Don't be shy about discussing any concerns with your plastic surgeon.
What questions should I ask my plastic surgeon about body contouring?
Use this checklist as a guide during your body contouring consultation:
- Are you certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery?
- Were you trained specifically in the field of plastic surgery?
- How many years of plastic surgery training have you had?
- Do you have hospital privileges to perform this procedure? If so, at which hospitals?
- Is the office-based surgical facility accredited by a nationally or state-recognized accrediting agency, or is it state-licensed or Medicare-certified?
- Am I a good candidate for this procedure?
- What will be expected of me to get the best results?
- Where and how will you perform my procedure?
- What surgical technique is recommended for me?
- How long of a recovery period can I expect, and what kind of help will I need during my recovery?
- What are the risks and complications associated with my procedure?
- How are complications handled?
- How can I expect to look over time? After pregnancy?
- What are my options if I am dissatisfied with the cosmetic outcome of my procedure?
- Do you have before-and-after photos I can look at for this procedure and what results are reasonable for me?
What are the risks of body contouring?
The decision to have plastic surgery is extremely personal, and you will have to decide if the benefits will achieve your goals and if the risks and potential complications of body contouring surgery are acceptable.
You will be asked to sign consent forms to ensure that you fully understand the procedure and any risks and potential complications.Body contouring risks include:
- Fluid accumulation
- Poor wound healing
- Skin loss
- Blood clots, deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism
- Excessive or widened scars
- Numbness or other changes in skin sensation
- Anesthesia risks
- Unfavorable scarring
- Residual skin laxity or contour irregularity
These risks and others will be fully discussed prior to your consent. It is important that you address all your questions directly with your plastic surgeon.
How should I prepare for body contouring?
In preparing for body contouring surgery, you may be asked to:
- Get cleared for surgery by your bariatric surgeon and/or primary care doctor
- Get a lab test
- Take certain medications or adjust your current medications
- Stop smoking well in advance of surgery
- Avoid taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs and herbal supplements or other medications that may increase bleeding
Body contouring surgery should be performed in an accredited office-based surgical facility, a licensed ambulatory surgical center or a hospital. If your body contouring is performed on an outpatient basis, be sure to arrange for someone to drive you to and from surgery and to stay with you for at least the first night following surgery.