The results of cosmetic surgery can be very gratifying to both the patient and the surgeon. Before you decide on any treatment we will ask you to attend a consultation with your surgeon, and there should be full discussion without any obligation.
At your consultation, you will have the opportunity to discuss treatment options with one of our surgeons and share any worries or concerns you may have. All your questions will be answered and you will be given time to think over what has been said, and what has been proposed. It is important that you both agree on what can be realistically achieved before preceding any further. The surgeon will try to assess you psychologically as well as physically, taking into account detailed medical history in order to decide if you are a suitable candidate for surgery, and if the result is likely to please you. Not every patient is accepted for surgery and it is sometimes in your overall interest to be refused by the surgeon.
If you feel that after consultation with your surgeon you have not been able to say all you wanted to say, or you felt that you have been misunderstood, you are advised to seek another consultation if you prefer, with another surgeon, before you decide whether to have the operation.
You will be able to discuss the above matter with our patient service manager who will be there to hold your hand before and after your operation. With your patient service manager, you will have a chance to talk in general terms about cosmetic surgery and to give costings on the particular procedure you are interested in. You will be given a fact sheet regarding the procedure, but it must be emphasised that the only person who can give you a final surgical opinion is your surgeon.
We will send you a letter of confirmation of your admittance time enclosed with a helpful checklist that will prepare you for your operation. It is vital that this is read, and all instructions are understood and carried out.
• All patients are strongly encouraged to stop smoking. Smoking is not only a recognised health hazard in its own right, but is also responsible for a number of post operative complications in patients who have general anaesthetic.
• Alcohol and Aspirin should be avoided for two weeks before and after any significant operation. Both impair clotting and hence the patient is more likely to bleed during and after the operation.
• Abstinence from food and drink from early morning or the previous midnight is essential, depending on the time of the operation and the orders of the anaesthetist.
Most patients are asked to attend at the Belvedere Hospital quite early on the day of the operation to give the surgeon and anaesthetist a chance to see you, and answer any last minute questions. A good margin of safety in the timing of your journey is essential to allow you to arrive at the clinic in good time, without being stressed and hurried.
• After the operation we strongly advise for someone else to take the stress of driving.
Once at the clinic, most patients will under go the admission procedure. Nurses will carefully fill out forms and will attach an identity bracelet to the patient. The nurses and the anaesthetist will make sure that you have not had anything to eat or drink for some hours before the operation if a general anaesthetic is to be given. You will be asked to change out of your ordinary clothes and put on an operation gown.
• It is never a good idea to bring valuables to a clinic. Rings, watches etc. that will have to be removed before the operation should be entrusted to the nurses and put in a safe place.
• You should bring to the clinic enough toiletries to last you for your expected stay, and pair of slippers.
After certain procedures it is important to sleep with your upper body elevated. Make sure you have appropriate pillows for your proper rest after an operation. Unless you are given instructions otherwise, do not put any creams or ointment on your stitches. As soon as your surgeon allows you, you may start washing your hair with mild shampoo every day, take a walk and look after your emotional well being. Keeping the stress levels down are also important factors in recovery.
Occasionally, the combined effect of metabolic changes caused by surgery and having to stay in doors with limited human contact can result in the mild form of post-operative depression. You may feel this coming on in the days following your surgery. If you do, recognise it for what it is and be aware that it is entirely normal. It will lift naturally within a week or so. Your skin will go through many changes. As it heals, you may notice that one side heals more quickly than the other, producing slightly uneven results at first. Again, this is entirely normal and it will correct itself in time
AVOID the following:
Aspirin – 2 weeks before surgery. It interferes with the ability of the blood to clot.
Vitamin E – 2 weeks before surgery.
Contraceptive pill – 4 weeks before surgery.
Some operations take a a long time to settle down. Your surgeon will monitor the healing progress by follow-up visits, as well as the initial postoperative visits to remove stitches. This service is included in the price of the operation.