Cosmetic Surgery and Procedures
You may have several cosmetic surgery or procedure options to enhance or restore your appearance. Talking with your doctor can help you choose the option that best fits your needs.
Common cosmetic procedures
- Reference Laser resurfacing uses a laser light to heat, damage, or destroy the upper layers of the skin. This can tighten the skin or cause new skin to grow. It is typically used to remove or improve the appearance of wrinkles, brown spots, shallow scars (from acne, surgery, or trauma), and sometimes, the appearance of small veins. Tattoos are removed with surgery or a laser that breaks down the color into fragments. These fragments are removed by your immune system.
- Reference Chemical peel uses a chemical solution to remove the top layers of skin, allowing new skin to grow. It is most often used to remove wrinkles, superficial skin growths, shallow scars, pigment changes in the skin, and other skin problems.
- Reference Dermabrasion uses a fine wire brush or a diamond wheel with rough edges to remove the upper layers of the skin, allowing new skin to grow. It may be used to treat acne scars and wrinkles around the mouth or to treat an enlarged nose (Reference rhinophyma Opens New Window Reference Opens New Window) caused by Reference rosacea Opens New Window Reference Opens New Window (facial inflammation and redness). Reference Microdermabrasion Opens New Window uses a different technique to treat just the top layers of the skin.
- Reference Filler injections are used to smooth wrinkles or pitted scars in the skin. They are also used to make the lips fuller. Fillers can restore volume and structure that is lost due to age or weight loss. When injected under the skin, a filler raises or puffs up that area. This goes away with time.
- Reference Botox injections use a protein that weakens the muscles of the face to reduce wrinkles. The effect is temporary, lasting about 3 to 4 months.
- Reference Sclerotherapy reduces or removes the appearance of small varicose veins and Reference spider veins Opens New Window. In sclerotherapy, a chemical is injected into a vein to damage and scar the inside lining of the vein, which causes the vein to close.
- Reference Laser hair removal Opens New Window and Reference electrolysis permanently remove unwanted hair such as facial hair. In laser hair removal, light treatments are used to heat and destroy hair follicles. This reduces the number of body hairs. In electrolysis, an electric current is applied to the hair root, which heats and destroys the hair follicle. Hair is not able to grow back in this area.
- Medical tattooing uses tattoo ink to change the look of a medical problem. For example, it can be used after breast surgery to create the look of a darker nipple and areola. Medical tattooing can also be used to darken white skin patches (vitiligo) and scarred skin.
Common cosmetic surgeries
- Reference Face-lift (rhytidectomy) removes excess skin and fat and tightens the muscles to smooth the face. Improvement is especially seen along the jawline and in the neck.
- Reference Eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) Opens New Window removes excess skin, fat, and muscles from the eyelids to correct drooping eyelids and remove bags and puffiness. Surgery may be done on the upper and lower lids.
- Reference "Nose job" (rhinoplasty) reshapes the nose by removing or rearranging its cartilage and bones. Rhinoplasty is done to change the appearance of your nose, improve breathing and nasal function, or achieve a combination of both.
- Reference Breast enlargement (augmentation) places an implant under the breast tissue or the chest muscle to make the breast larger.
- Reference Breast reduction removes excess breast tissue and skin to reshape and lift the breast. Women may seek breast reduction to change their appearance, reduce back pain, and reduce limitations of activities caused by large breasts.
- Reference Liposuction uses suction, ultrasound, or laser to remove stubborn fat that has not gone away with a healthy weight loss diet and exercise. For women, this can be on the outer or inner thighs, neck, upper arms, belly, knees, and hips. For men, this can be on the waist, belly, neck, breasts, or back.
- Reference "Tummy tuck" (abdominoplasty) Opens New Window removes excess skin and fat from the abdominal area and tightens abdominal muscles. When a large weight loss or several pregnancies leave behind extra folds of skin, some people use this surgery for a flatter, smoother stomach. As with liposuction, the purpose of a tummy tuck is to reshape the area rather than to reduce body weight.
- Reference Varicose vein surgery removes large varicose veins. During varicose vein surgery, an incision is made over the varicose vein, and the vein is tied off and either left in place or removed. But newer therapies for vein stripping include foam sclerotherapy and laser or radiofrequency probes that use heat to destroy varicose veins.
- Reference Hair transplant surgery reduces the appearance of bald spots or hair loss by moving hair from one part of the head to another.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference July 31, 2012|
|Medical Review:||Reference Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Reference Keith A. Denkler, MD - Plastic Surgery