Mr Nigel Horlock

Consultant Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon

Fit for cosmetic surgery? 3 health considerations you should take into account

Thanks to significant improvements within the industry over the past decade, cosmetic surgery is now considered a largely safe and common thing to have done. However, even the non-surgical procedures can still present numerous risks.

If you’re thinking of undergoing cosmetic surgery, there’s a lot of factors you’ll need to consider. One of which, is whether you’re actually fit enough for the surgery. Here, you’ll discover three health considerations you should take into account before opting to go under the knife.

  1. Your BMI

If you want to get the best possible outcome from your surgery, your BMI should ideally be below 30. Patients who are overweight are more susceptible to the risks and complications of surgery. Not only does the procedure itself pose more of a risk if you’re carrying excess weight, but the anaesthesia is riskier too.

So, if you are overweight, it would be a good idea to lose some before going under the knife. That way, the risks will be greatly reduced and you’re more likely to recover quickly.

  1. Existing health conditions

If you suffer from existing health conditions, these will need to be taken into account before you have cosmetic surgery. The two main conditions to be mindful of are diabetes and asthma.

If you suffer from diabetes, it can lead to issues with either high or low blood glucose after the surgery. This can impact how quickly the wounds heal. So, you’ll need to make sure your blood glucose levels are well controlled going into the surgery.

Those with asthma will also need to make sure the condition is under control. If it’s not, you could experience a flare up either during or after the surgery. It’s best to see your doctor a week prior to the surgery to ensure you’re in the best possible health to go ahead with it.

  1. Smoking and drinking

If you smoke, you’re going to need to stop at least six weeks prior to the surgery. You’ll also need to continue to not smoke for six weeks after the surgery. There have been a lot of studies carried out which have shown smokers need an average of 33% more anaesthetic and 23% more pain medication after surgery than non-smokers. Nicotine is known to constrict the blood vessels and restrict blood supply to the tissues and organs which can significantly slow down wound healing.

If you drink a lot of alcohol, you’ll also want to quit approximately two weeks before the surgery. Alcohol increases the risk of bleeding and can negatively interact with the anaesthetic. So, quitting a couple of weeks before going under the knife is a sensible idea.

The above are just three health considerations to take into account before undergoing cosmetic surgery. Your plastic surgeon will be able to assess your general health and make recommendations on anything you’ll need to improve before undergoing cosmetic surgery, which is why the cosmetic surgery consultation is such an important part of the process.


Mr Horlock's NHS practice is based in the regional plastics unit at Salisbury District Hospital. He covers Salisbury, Southampton and Dorchester. He sees patients in his private practice at Southampton, Salisbury, Dorchester.

CONTACT MR HORLOCK
Spire Southampton Hospital
Chalybeate Close,
Southampton,
Hampshire
S016 6UY
Sophie Freud - CLINIC APPOINTMENTS: 02380 914 504
Julie Martin: 02380 764 969
info@nigelhorlock.co.uk