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Popular Plastic Surgery Procedures

The popularity of plastic surgery has been steadily growing over the past few decades. What was once a practice for reconstruction after an accident or medical condition has grown into a booming cosmetic enhancement field. With access to these procedures increasing and the cost becoming more manageable, more people are considering having “work done” to themselves.

Here is a list of some of the most popular procedures available:

Liposuction – Popular for fat removal, there are two types of liposuction procedures available.

Tumescent liposuction involves injecting a mix of saline, blood vessel constricting drugs, and an anesthetic into the body section being treated. A small metal rod with holes called a cannula is then used to suction out the fat and the liquid solution. Tumescent liposuction is the most popular form of liposuction.

Ultrasonic-Assisted Liposuction, or UAL, releases ultrasonic energy through a cannula, which then melts the fat. The fat is then suctioned out of the body this form of liposuction can be more risky than tumescent liposuction. Some risks include burns internally and externally, and a longer surgery period.

Generally patients are functional and back to work in a couple of weeks. Recovery periods can vary depending upon the area of the body the work was performed on.

Abdominoplasty – Known as a “tummy tuck” or a lower body lift, this procedure removes excess skin from the abdomen. It is also used to tighten and firm up what skin remains. This procedure is popular among bariatric weight loss patients and moms, who wish to have excess skin removed from previous weight loss procedures and pregnancy.

Recovery usually takes 2-3 weeks when normal routines, with the exception of exercise, can resume.

Breast Augmentation – Possibly one of the most popular procedures performed, around 350 thousand breast augmentations take place in America every year. Reasons for breast augmentation vary from asymmetrical breasts, to mastectomy reconstruction, to breast enlargement.

Patients face a 1-2 week recovery period before they can resume normal routines. Exercise and other strenuous activities should not be performed before discussing with a surgeon as procedures may require additional healing time.


Breast Reduction – Many breast reduction procedures are fully covered by insurance, unlike most plastic surgery operations. The reason is, breast reduction is usually not sought for cosmetic enhancement. Many women suffer physical problems including chronic back pain and bad posture due to overly large breasts. These women also suffer from depression and have a hard time finding clothing. Overly large breasts risk both physical and mental health for women. Breast reduction surgery is a permanent procedure that reduces the size of the breasts and reduces anguish felt by many female patients.

Like with breast augmentation, patients are usually back to work and their normal daily routines around 2 weeks after the procedure.

Rhinoplasty – Commonly known as a “nose job,” this procedure reduces the size and imperfections in the nose. In some cases, particularly those affecting breathing like a deviated septum will be covered by insurance. The reasoning is that a deviated septum is corrected by a rhinoplasty procedure and therefore has a non-cosmetic enhancement purpose.

Patients generally return to work in 10-12 days. Bruising can be severe after the operation, but will gradually fade before the patients regular routine resumes.

Rhytiedectomy – Known as a “face lift,” this procedure is designed to firm up the skin and eliminate wrinkles which come with aging. This gives the patient a fresh, youthful appearance and is often paired with other facial plastic surgery procedures.

Final results are often seen around 12 weeks after the treatment. Many patients return to work about 2 weeks after the procedure has been performed, when bruising, swelling, and redness have vanished.

Gynecomastia Treatment – Designed for the male population, the procedure removes excessive amounts of male breast tissue. This is a permanent treatment that is effective if the excess skin is a product of genetics. However, some men have excess skin due to steroid or marijuana use. This procedure is ineffective as tissue will grow back if these habits continue post-surgery.

Many patients can return to work within a week of the procedure. Like with female breast tissue operations, full activity may be limited until several weeks after the procedure.