The risks with surgery
Surgery is never without risk and complications can occur.
- Anaesthetic. A local or general anaesthetic always poses risks, from a simple skin eruption to death.
- Haemorrhage. The slightest procedure can cause internal bleeding. If it is mild, it will stop on its own; if it is more serious, the doctor must drain it. If there is external bleeding, where possible the doctor must re-open the incision.
- Infection. This often occurs a few days after the operation, and if it becomes severe hospitalisation will be required.
- Scarring. All cosmetic surgery leaves scars. The process of healing varies from one person to the next, but is usually quite quick (usually 6 to 12 months and up to 3 years to heal to a trace). The scar will become red and irritated after about a month and finally turn white and flat.
Psychological risks with surgery
According to research published by the American Journal of Epistemology, having breast implants increases a person's chance of suicide to 73%. This is explained by the increased fragility and low self esteem of people who resort to cosmetic surgery. There are many women who would get more out of a session with a psychologist than a boob job.
Media-driven images give us unrealistic ideas of perfection. Sometimes women experience disappointment after a procedure because their new body doesn't match up to their expectations, and their mental health can be affected.
There's also a risk of addiction to cosmetic surgery: some women carry on having more surgery to achieve the perfect body without taking the dangers into account. Surgery may not be the answer to your problems.
How to lower the risks
Check out your surgeon's qualifications (he or she should be a registered surgeon).
See several surgeons for different opinions so that you're comfortable with what you want and what you can expect from surgery.
Be wary of doctors who are in a hurry to operate and who will give you an appointment very quickly (2 weeks is the standard period given to think things over before proceeding), and be careful with ads you find in the press.
Don't deal with anyone who isn't a professional and ask to see their qualifications.
Don't go in for surgery without getting a quote first.
Make sure it is what you want and make sure you know everything about the procedure before you even consider going under the knife.