What is the first thing you think about when you think about plastic surgery?
I’ll be the first to tell you that plastic surgery doesn’t always get a good wrap. I’ve heard it all! That it’s fake, vain, unnatural. That we, as doctors, are cop-outs, skin-shifters, sell-outs. You name it, I’ve heard it. The fact is plastic surgery is so much more and the effect of we have peoples lives, confidence, and self-esteem is…well, there are no words.
What I love telling my medical students is that what you see on TV and social media is only the tip of the iceberg. Facelifts, breast augmentations, tummy tucks, botox and fillers, in reality, are only part of what we are trained in. Did you know that when someone gets in a car accident and has broken bones in the face and hand, we get called. Or when there is a bad open leg fracture, we are called to make sure the bone fixation is appropriately covered with healthy tissue. How about a woman with breast cancer that is having a mastectomy or now has asymmetry because of surgery or radiation, we help to restore and improve this. We can even be involved when people have other cancers that are removed or those that have had their fingers or arms traumatically amputated. We are also the wound experts, we can do face transplants, arm replants or transplants, or really replant/transplant anything. We even operate with suture that’s thinner than your hair. All this to say that we do way more than what you hear about on TV or the media. Our field is diverse and rewarding and artistic and broad.
And finally, y’all don’t even know how many times people have said to me that they could never undergo plastic surgery because they are just not that type of person. What exactly is that type of person? I’m a confident person and I’m not sure anyone would consider me to be superficial, but I’ve undergone my share of nonsurgical procedures. I don’t do it for any other reason than to feel good, refreshed, and give myself the same extra boost that working out or a good mascara gives me. It’s about self care and feeling your best self yet.