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What’s The Difference? Plastic Surgery, Cosmetic Surgery, Aesthetics

Sarah Yousuff

Plastic surgery, cosmetic surgery, and aesthetic procedures can be confusing terms; often used interchangeably they relatively similar. 

Plastic surgery is commonly used as a general term for operative or instrumental treatment performed for aesthetic reasons. In reality, plastic surgery is the field which addresses corrective or functional surgeries and procedures. The plastic surgeon is often at work due to the effects of accidents, burns or disease, and has a full surgical residency and strict medical requirements governing their certification. The other area of plastic surgery is reconstructive surgery, which takes place when a part of a patient has been damaged in something like an accident or a fire.

Cosmetic surgery is a subfield of plastic surgery, and addresses aesthetic or elective procedures in order to enhance features a patient finds unflattering about themselves. Cosmetic surgery is also performed on bodily parts for health purposes, such as breast reductions. Aesthetic procedures are non-invasive forms of cosmetic surgery, where virtually no surgical procedure takes places. Aesthetics includes procedures like Botox and collagen injections, facial peels, and laser treatments.

In an age where looks are more important than ever before, many people, and especially women, are availing themselves of the many opportunities to have cosmetic procedures on parts they do not like. This cultural reality is reflected in shows such as Extreme Makeover and other hit medical shows that document bodily changes.

What patents must be aware of is that some people are becoming addicted to cosmetic surgeries and aesthetic procedures. The fact is, that once a person sees how very easy it is to get something they don’t like fixed, the more about themselves they do not like and want remedied. Prime celebrity examples of this include Michael Jackson and Joan Rivers.

No cosmetic procedure should be done without first having a psychological and medical consultation. It is imperative that the patient has full knowledge of both the benefits and the risks of the procedure they’d like to have, and the patent should also be knowledgeable about the potential of becoming an addict.

It is also very important for a potential patient to do research on the surgeon that will be performing the procedure. With most things in life, it is important to remember that cheap prices mean cheap work, there is simply no way around it. Those looking for surgeons must choose wisely, or the results could be less than satisfying or even devastating.

Return to our home page for more about your plastic surgeon in Charlotte, NC.
Meet the surgeons: Dr. Donald Sudy and Dr. Sarah Yousuff