An Associate Professor at the Plastic Surgery Unit, College of Medicine, University Of Lagos, Dr. Bolaji Mofikoya has said that Nigerians desiring to undergo cosmetic surgery should know their health status and do thorough research on the procedure before going for it.
Dr. Mofikoya said those insisting on having the procedure done at all costs should consider the associated risks, stating that not everyone is medically fit for such.
Speaking with Punch Healthwise, he said people should ask questions and should not believe everything they read on the internet about plastic surgery.
The plastic surgeon warned that people could die from the procedure if it was done in a poorly equipped facility with untrained personnel.
Meanwhile, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, says cosmetic plastic surgery includes surgical and nonsurgical procedures that enhance and reshape structures of the body to improve appearance and confidence.
Mofikoya observed that poor patient selection could lead to negative outcomes and gave insight into the various risks associated with the procedure when performed on the buttocks, belly, and breasts, especially when performed by quacks.
The don, however, said cosmetic procedures when done on the right person, by a trained professional team, in the right facility are usually safe.
The plastic surgeon said, “My advice to anyone seeking cosmetic surgery is to research the procedure, research the personnel and don’t believe everything you read on the internet.
“Find out about the facility, find out about the anaesthesia and anaesthetist staff, know about your health status, and ask the person if the procedure you want is suitable and safe for you.
“Please always ask questions, ask about recuperation times, and ask about the dos and don’ts after the surgery.”
Giving insight into why undergoing a cosmetic procedure should not be taken lightly, Mofikoya said, “There have been rare instances where death can occur following cosmetic surgery and any other kind of surgery in Nigeria as well as in other countries of the world.
“This may be due to an undiagnosed medical condition or procedures done in places not properly equipped, procedures by untrained personnel and poor patient selection. Poor patient selection means those who are not fit but want the surgery at all costs.
“Undiagnosed medical conditions that may be dangerous include hypertension, sickle disease and diabetes.”
An online health portal, Mayo Clinic says though all surgeries, including cosmetic procedures, carry risk, people with certain health conditions might have serious complications undergoing cosmetic surgery.
“If your body mass index is 30 or higher (obesity) or you have diabetes, you might be at higher risk of developing complications such as blood clots in the legs or lungs. Smoking also increases risks and interferes with healing.
“Despite being informed and prepared, you might be surprised by the bruising and swelling that follow cosmetic surgery and how long they last”, the clinic said.
Speaking on buttocks surgery, the surgeon explained that the risks involved include pain, swelling in the buttocks, and a higher risk of infection.
He said, “There is also the danger of fat emboli( fat lobules entering the bloodstream and lungs) when lipofilling is done in more than recommended amounts under certain circumstances. This condition is potentially life-threatening.
“The restriction of not sitting for days and avoiding physical activity is often recommended for several days after surgery.”
Speaking on tummy tuck, the plastic surgeon said, “The likely complications are related to the bleeding, infection and tissue death which can lead to wound breakdown in the early period after surgery.
“There are very few long-term deleterious effects aside from excessive scarring in certain individuals. On a general note, the procedure is often advised to be done after childbearing has been completed.”
In a 2018 study by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, it was noted that patients undergoing combined procedures were at higher risk of complications.
SOURCE: Punch Healthwise