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How to Prepare for Surgery

Posted December 9, 2013 in Breast Augmentation, Plastic Surgery Preparation, Recovery, Tummy Tuck Category

Four Easy Steps to Prepare for Cosmetic Surgery and Recovery

Cosmetic surgery provides excellent and natural appearing results when performed by an experienced board-certified plastic surgeon.  Each procedure performed, however, does require a specific period of time for recovery.  There are some important factors to discuss that can slow the recovery process after cosmetic surgery. While a patient cannot change his or her body’s natural ability to heal once surgery is complete, there are a few simple things that can be done to help ease the entire recovery process before surgery even begins.

1. Stop smoking

A myriad of post-surgical complications have been linked to smoking before surgery. This is due to significant inflammation that smoking causes. Smokers are more likely to contract infections and have postoperative breathing problems than non-smokers after surgery. What’s more, smoking causes the blood vessels to shrink, which makes it more difficult to carry oxygen, nutrients, and healing factors to wounds.  Significant healing problems can occur including the disastrous effect of gangrene.

It may be difficult to quit smoking before surgery, but the good news is, the body begins to heal just 24 hours after you quit. For the best results, it is advised that you do not smoke at least three weeks prior to surgery. During this time, circulation and lung function improve significantly. For the fastest recovery time and a lower risk of complications, it is best that your body is in its healthiest state.

2. Avoid certain medications

There are some medications that you should avoid two weeks before surgery and continue to avoid two weeks after your operation. These can increase the risk of excess bleeding or other complications:

  • Anti-inflammatory medications, such as aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin), and naproxen (Aleve)
  • Plavix
  • Ticlid (Ticlopidine)
  • Herbal medicines
  • Fish oils or Flaxseed oils

At your consultation, Dr. Spies will give you a more detailed understanding of the medication you should avoid and any other preoperative instructions you should follow.

3.  Have all medical illnesses under good control

It is not unusual for someone with diabetes or high blood pressure desire cosmetic surgery.  It is important for these types of problems to be under good control.  A visit to your primary care physician is warranted to help in this matter.  Dr Spies would also request up-to-date blood work and EKG to further improve the safety of your procedure.

4. Plan ahead for at-home assistance

After an invasive surgery like a tummy tuck or breast augmentation, pain, swelling, and downtime are expected for at least the first 24 hours. One of the best things you can do is to plan ahead.

Here is a simple checklist you can follow:

✓   Arrange for someone to drive you home and assist you for the first 24 hours

✓   Establish an area where you will be spending most of your time, whether it is your bed or a recliner

✓   Prepare healthy meals ahead of time

✓   Make sure cold compresses, medications, bandages, pillows, and blankets are all within reach

Please follow these simple steps along with your surgeon’s pre- and postoperative instructions to simplify your recovery process. If you are interested in cosmetic surgery in the Scottsdale, AZ area, contact board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Spies today. Please call (480) 890-0600 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a consultation.

Contact Us Today

Dr. Spies is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and highly experienced in breast lift surgery for over 35 years. If interested in undergoing this procedure, please feel free to call 480-359-1019 to schedule a consultation.

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Dr. Spies' office is located in Paradise Valley, Arizona just adjacent to the Paradise Valley Cosmetic Surgery Center


Robert J. Spies, M.D.
5410 N Scottsdale Rd C 100
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253
Tel: 480-359-1019