WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT FROM MY INITIAL CONSULTATION?
We ask that you provide us with basic personal information for our administrative records as well as information about your past medical and surgical history. Our Patient Health Questionnaire can be printed and filled out at home, prior to your consultation.
A physician will discuss your desires and expectations with you. He/she will then examine you and give recommendations on how to best achieve your goals. We believe in your right to be well informed about the entire process of preparing for, undergoing and recovering from plastic surgery.
Take this time to ask all the questions you have about the surgery. Learning everything you can about your options, risks and benefits is the key to making an informed decision.
Photographs are used to both plan the procedure and to maintain a record from which the final result can be evaluated. Photographs are usually taken during your initial consultation and again post-operatively.
In addition to your discussion with a physician and the Financial Coordinator, you may wish to read a brochure prepared by the ASPS.
When you meet with the Financial Coordinator, she will discuss the cost and scheduling of your surgery.
WHAT SHOULD I DO TO PREPARE FOR SURGERY?
Smoking reduces blood circulation to the skin and impairs the healing process.
Do Not Take Aspirin
Stop taking any medications that contain aspirin or ibuprofen 10 days prior to surgery. These drugs may cause bleeding both during and after surgery. Use medications that contain acetaminophen (Tylenol) instead.
Take Vitamin C
Take 500mg twice daily to promote healing.
Regular exercise will help your body heal faster.
WHAT SHOULD I DO THE DAY BEFORE SURGERY?
Eating and Drinking
Do not eat or drink anything after 12:00 midnight the night before surgery, unless your surgery is scheduled at or after 7:30am, then fast after 11pm the night before surgery.
You may take most necessary medications the day of surgery with a small sip of water. Do not take any diuretic or oral diabetic medications the morning of surgery. If you are on insulin, please check with your Doctor for instructions. If you take Coumadin, Plavix, or any other blood thinning medications, please check with your doctor for instructions. Our physicians would like those on Plavix to be off this medication for 14 days prior to surgery. Stop aspirin, NSAIDs such as Ibuprofen, Naproxen, and Aleve one week prior to surgery. Celebrex may be taken until the day of surgery. Herbal supplements, weight loss products, and Vitamin E must be stopped 2 weeks prior to surgery, unless directed by your physician.
Call if you have any skin cuts or burns that look infected, we may need to change your surgery date for this.
Fill your Prescriptions
You will be given prescriptions, at your preoperative visit, for pain medication and possibly a sleeping medication and/or an antibiotic. Please have your prescriptions filled BEFORE the day of surgery.
The night before surgery shower and shampoo, and wash the surgical areas well for a full 5 minutes. Do not use hair conditioners or hair sprays.
WHAT SHOULD I DO THE MORNING OF SURGERY?
You may brush your teeth but do not swallow any of the water.
Make-Up and Nails
Please do not wear moisturizers, creams, lotions or make-up. Acrylic nails may stay on. No nail polish on one finger of either hand so the oxygen monitor can be used.
No jewelry can be worn to surgery. Wear comfortable, loose fitting clothing that does not go over your head. Do not wear hairpins, wigs, or jewelry. Do not take large amounts of money or anything valuable to surgery with you.
Bring your insurance card with you (if applicable).
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT ON THE DAY OF MY SURGERY?
Report to the surgical facility as directed by our office. Your physician will see you before surgery to discuss any last minute questions you may have. You should plan to arrive at least one hour prior to your scheduled time of surgery. A parent or a legal guardian must accompany patients under the age of 18.
If family members are present in the waiting room, your physician will make every effort to talk with them after surgery.
Going to the operating room is not a normal experience for most people. Our staff recognizes that this anxiety is natural as most people approach this step in the process of achieving their goals. A description of the surgical experience will be helpful to increase your understanding of this event.
After checking into the surgical facility, you will proceed to the preoperative holding area. You will change into a surgical gown. The pre-operative nurse will go over your consent and medical questionnaire. Your physician and the anesthesiologist, if scheduled, will meet with you in the pre-operative holding area. At this time, final surgical planning will take place. Basic preparation including drawing on your skin will take place at this time, if needed. The anesthesiologist will place an intravenous line in your arm at this time.
Once you enter the operating room, the operating room staff will do their best to make you feel comfortable and secure. To ensure your safety, the staff will connect you to monitoring devices. Medicine that makes you drowsy will be given through the intravenous line.
When your surgery is complete and the dressings are in place, you will be moved to the recovery room. You will stay connected to monitoring equipment. During this time, a fully trained recovery room nurse will remain with you. Your stay in the recovery room will depend on the length of your surgery but generally lasts from 1 to 4 hours. Most patients are fully awake 30 to 60 minutes after surgery, but many do not remember their stay in the recovery room.
You must arrange for someone to bring you to the surgical facility and drive you home. This may be a family member or close friend. If you remain in the hospital overnight, a nurse will be with you.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT AFTER THE SURGERY?
Almost all surgeries are done on an outpatient basis. Your first 48 hours are VERY MPORTANT. If you have excessive bleeding or pain, call the office day or night.
First 24 Hours
If you are going home, a family member or close friend must drive you home because you will have been sedated for surgery. Someone should stay overnight with you. If you have any questions regarding these arrangements, discuss them with our staff.
Keep your dressings as clean and dry as possible. Do not remove them unless instructed to do so.
Take it easy and pamper yourself. Avoid any straining. You may go to the bathroom, sit and watch TV, etc., but no matter how well you feel DO NOT RESUME NORMAL ACTIVITY SUCH AS HOUSE CLEANING, LAUNDRY, ETC. Increased activity may result in bleeding, excess swelling and bruising, any one of which may alter the healing process.
Cold or ice packs help to reduce swelling, bruising and pain. Use frozen peas in the package or crushed ice in a zip-lock bag. This should help, not hurt. If the ice feels uncomfortable, do not use it as often.
If you experience any post-operative nausea, carbonated soda and dry crackers may help. If the nausea persists a suppository may be necessary. If you are not nauseous, start with liquids and bland foods first. If these are well tolerated, progress to a regular diet.
Smoking reduces blood flow to the skin. It is best to avoid smoking during the first 2 weeks after surgery.
Alcohol dilates blood vessels and thus could increase bleeding. Do not drink alcohol until you have stopped taking the prescription pain medication, as this combination may be dangerous.
Please do not drive for at least 2 days after general anesthesia or intravenous sedation or while taking prescription pain pills. This combination may slow your response time, which may lead to an accident.
It is very important that you follow the schedule of appointments we establish after surgery.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT DURING THE HEALING PROCESS?
Support from friends and family is very helpful, but because they do not understand a normal post-operative course, their comments may unintentionally create emotional stress for you. We will tell you honestly how you are doing and what we expect your final result to be. Please trust our knowledge and experience in this regard when we discuss your progress with you.
Although plastic surgery has become very popular in the last decade, your friends may be reluctant to discuss what they believe is a private matter. If you feel comfortable discussing your surgical experience, do so openly.
Some patients experience a brief period of “let-down” or depression after cosmetic surgery. Some may subconsciously have expected to feel and look better “instantly” even though they rationally understand that this will not be the case. Some patients question their decision to have surgery during the first few days after surgery. As the healing progresses, these thoughts usually disappear. If you feel depressed, understanding that this is a natural phase of healing for some patients may help you to cope.
Everyone has the capacity to heal themselves physically and emotionally after surgery. This ability is variable and depends on a number of factors such as your genetic background, your overall state of health and lifestyle. Whether you exercise, diet, smoke or drink alcohol to excess will affect your ability to heal. Your cooperation and close attention, as well as your understanding of the processes taking place are important and in your best interest.
Another major factor in the healing process is whether you follow the instructions given to you by your physician. These guidelines are designed to promote the healing process and to prevent the occurrence of anything which may interfere with recovery. It is imperative that you recognize that you are a partner in this process and have the responsibility to follow instructions carefully. The instructions are based on a broad experience and are designed to give you the best opportunity for healing without delay or complications.
If you have any further questions regarding your upcoming surgery, please call us at 616-459-1907.
Print and complete our Patient Health Questionnaire prior to your consultation.