What are the risks of having plastic surgery and what can be done to lower them?

Any form of surgery involves a certain degree of risk, and plastic surgery is no different. Things can, and often do, go wrong. Mistakes can be made and patients can have problematic reactions to procedures.

Although the vast majority of cosmetic surgery operations are successful, it's important to be aware of what could potentially go wrong.

The most common complications associated with cosmetic surgery are as follows:

Asymmetry: this is where one breast, one side of the face, one eyelid etc does not match the other. More surgery is sometimes required to correct this issue.

Irregularities: plastic surgery is not an exact science so patients can be left with lumps, bumps, holes or creases.

Necrosis: this is where the skin actually dies, usually as a result of infection or hematoma.

Numbness: patients can experience a loss of sensation in the area operated upon. Usually temporary, but sometimes permanent.

Seroma: this is where fluid gathers under the skin particularly after liposuction and breast augmentation.

Healing problems: in some cases the skin or body can fail to heal properly and the patient is left with noticeable signs of surgery.

There are also a number of risks attached to surgery in general including anesthesia complications, blood clots, blood loss, infection and aspiration (when vomit is forced through the lungs during surgery).

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