Before undergoing plastic surgery, there are many health considerations and commitments that patients should make. The best candidates for any surgical procedure are those patients that are in good health; these patients face a significantly reduced risk of developing complications during and after surgery. Even if you are in overall good health, some habits could put you at risk of complications or delay your recovery. In this blog post, San Diego plastic surgeon, Dr. Vincent Marin advises patients on the habits they should adopt and avoid in the weeks before their medical appointments.
As if you haven’t heard enough reasons to quit smoking, here is another one. Smoking cigarettes can seriously delay wound healing after surgery and increase your risk of infection and other complications. If you smoke cigarettes regularly or socially, you will need to quit four weeks before surgery. If you decide to start smoking again, you should wait another four weeks after surgery to resume the habit.
Stop Taking Certain Medications
Certain medications thin the blood, which can increase your risk of bleeding during and after surgery. When you meet with Dr. Marin for your pre-operative consult, come equipped with a complete list of medications, vitamins, and herbs that you have taken in the past year or so. Dr. Marin will let you know if any of them could interfere with your surgery. Some of the medications you should avoid before surgery include NSAIDs, aspirin, vitamin E, St. Johns Wort, ginkgo Biloba, and ginseng.
Get to a Healthy Weight
Patients should be in good health before any elective surgical procedure. But it is especially important that patients shed any extra weight and be in or close to their ideal shape before undergoing skin tightening surgical procedures such as tummy tuck, arm lift, and thigh lift. During these procedures, excess skin is removed to produce smoother skin contour. If patients lose additional weight after surgery, they may experience further wrinkling of the excess skin.
Consume Less Sodium
Sodium increases inflammation, which can further exacerbate already inflamed skin and tissue after plastic surgery. In the weeks before and after surgery, patients should make an effort to reduce their sodium intake to a level that Dr. Marin finds satisfactory. One of the best ways to limit sodium consumption is to eat a well-balanced diet of fresh foods. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins should make up a large portion of your diet.
Don’t Drink Alcohol
Patients should avoid drinking excessive amounts of alcohol in the weeks leading up to surgery. It is best to avoid all alcoholic beverages for at least a week before surgery, and patients definitely should not drink the day before their medical appointments.
Drink the recommended 64 ounces of water a day before your plastic surgery procedure. Drinking plenty of water will keep you hydrated and flush any residual toxins from your system.
Being in excellent health before plastic surgery will promote a speedier recovery and enhance the results of surgery.
*The content in this blog is developed to spread the awareness towards plastic surgery. Our blog is not intended to serve as a replacement for an actual in-office consultation with Dr. Marin. As such, the information within this blog reflects the unique cases of our individual patients.