So you’re considering cosmetic surgery or have already made an appointment for your chosen procedure. Congratulations! It was a big decision. Now what?
Many people think that once you’ve decided on a procedure, there’s not much left to do other than show up for the appointment. With even the most minor procedure, though, the patient has a responsibility to be well-informed and prepared.
Happily, expert surgeons like Tucson’s Dr. Mikel Lo provide a consultation prior to patients making a final decision on whether or not cosmetic surgery is right for them. Good cosmetic surgeons know that you may have questions, worries, or concerns. Dr. Lo uses the consultation to answer a patient’s questions, and to be certain that patients have all the information necessary to make informed choices.
Prior to your consultation, it’s good to make a list of questions. Keep your list handy in the days leading up to your consultation.
To get you started, here are a few questions you may want to ask:
- What professional certifications does the doctor hold? States require a medical license to practice medicine. Certifications are above and beyond that requirement, showing that your surgeon is at the top of their profession and will deliver high-quality care.
- How many times has the surgeon done a specific procedure? A good surgeon is proud to talk about his experience. Doctors who have been practicing for years will gladly provide you with information on the number of times they’ve performed a specific procedure.
- What other medical staff will assist with the procedure? Doctors don’t usually work alone; they have a staff of qualified, extremely competent nurses and assistants at their side. Ask about the nurses’ level of experience and ask if you can meet and speak with them too.
- Does the doctor have hospital privileges? While most procedures are done at the surgeon’s office based facilities, hospital privileges show that the hospital’s Medical Executive Committee, which considers a doctor’s training and safety record before allowing them to practice in the hospital, has deemed your surgeon to be among the very best.
- What type of anesthesia will be used, and what are your options? There are several types of anesthesia, from general to IV to local. Your surgeon will talk to you about your best options.
- Can the doctor provide before-and-after photos of previous patients? Of course, you’ll want to see what type of results the doctor has had with the procedure being performed on you. Surgeons should be able to supply an ample number of photos for most procedures. And you can see many on their website.
- Can the surgeon provide references for patients who have had a particular procedure? There are confidentiality laws, so your surgeon won’t be handing out names and addresses; however, doctors may have former patients that have agreed to speak with potential patients. Your doctor may not be able to oblige, but you may ask.
After the consultation—and your decision to proceed with the surgery—what then?
There are several things that U.S. News suggests patients can do in the days and weeks before surgery which will make recovery go more smoothly and quickly. Always check with your surgeon for the best advice.
Drink clear liquids with carbs
Your doctor may advise not eating or drinking after midnight prior to surgery, but many guidelines now say it’s okay to drink clear liquids up to two hours before surgery. Clear liquids (water, non-pulp fruit juice, clear tea, black coffee) are good, but low in carbs. Carbs can help reduce post-operative pain and nausea, and is an over-the-counter pre-surgery, clear, carbohydrate drink. Ask your surgeon!
Load up on protein
Protein promotes immunity and healing and can maintain muscle mass, which can get you up and around more quickly. Protein needs increase in times of stress, and it’s recommended that patients increase their intake of protein in the weeks before any procedure.
Eat plenty of fiber
A high-fiber diet will keep digestion regular and keep your gastrointestinal tract on its normal schedule. Eat vegetables, fresh fruit, yogurt, and almonds to increase fiber.
Eat plant-based foods
Besides the fiber and nutrients, there are anti-inflammatory chemicals in fresh fruit which help healing. Also, foods containing vitamin C will help rebuild collagen, which is helpful for many cosmetic procedures.
Avoid sugar and processed foods
There is some evidence that high blood-sugar levels prior to surgery can increase postoperative complications like infections. Better to be safe than sorry, so replace processed foods and sugar with dark green vegetables and fresh fruit.
Research shows that smoking before surgery can increase the risk of complications and infection. Smoking can also increase post-surgery issues like heart attack and stroke.
Dr. Mikel Lo and the staff of About Faces Cosmetic Surgery are ready to answer all your questions. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Mikel Lo and his talented, professional staff—including 2 trained nurse injectors—at About Faces Cosmetic Surgery. Contact us today!