Combination Treatment Plans for Plastic Surgery

Plastic surgery often involves more than one procedure at the same time. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 34 percent of Dubai plastic surgery patients in 2019 had several procedures at once.

Why Combine Treatments?

Here are three common reasons for combining treatments:

  • In today’s busy environment, people are looking for ways to be more time-efficient. Having multiple procedures at once reduces total time in surgery.
  • You may need more than one procedure or treatment to achieve your desired results. For example, Botox may be used to treat forehead wrinkles while Restylane treats deep nasiofold lines or wrinkles.
  • The cost is also a consideration. When multiple surgical procedures are performed at the same time, you pay only once for the anesthesia fee and once for the facility fee.

You will appreciate the outcome of a treatment plan that includes a well-thought-out combination of procedures. There are good reasons to have multiple procedures and treatments at once, but there are also special considerations when performing a combination of procedures, such as anesthesia time, recovery, and complications.

General Anesthesia Time

Some specialists contend that there are more risks associated with remaining under general anesthesia for more than five or six hours. Some combination treatments may require more than five or six hours. As a precautionary measure, the doctor will perform additional tests to minimize the risk of complications. These tests may include blood tests, urine analysis, and EKG. Potential risks associated with longer anesthesia time include heart or lung complications. Occasionally, plastic surgeons will team up in combination procedures so that one doctor can perform one procedure, while the other doctor performs the other procedure to reduce total time.

Recovery Issues with Combination Treatment

Getting the recovery period out of the way for multiple procedures at once is more convenient, but the difficulty of recovery may be greater, perhaps more painful, uncomfortable, or longer lasting.

Complications and Risks

Patients can help the doctor reduce the risk of complications by focusing on key complaints and communicating them. Also be sure to give the doctor a list of all vitamin supplements and holistic remedies, as well as all over-the-counter and prescribed medications that you’re taking or plan to take.

The location of the procedure may also make a difference. A fully accredited outpatient surgery center may be equipped with all of the precautionary equipment needed for the added risks of longer general anesthesia times. On the other hand, multiple procedures are more likely to be performed in a hospital, requiring an overnight stay.

Commonly Combined Non-Invasive or Minimally Invasive Procedures

A comprehensive treatment plan may include multiple non-invasive or minimally invasive procedures. For example, a comprehensive treatment plan may include injectables and fillers such as Radiesse, Restylanefat fillers, and collagen to fill in wrinkles in the nasiofold area, chin, cheeks, and to add fullness to hollowed areas. Botox may be added to relieve the muscle contraction that causes forehead wrinkles and crow’s feet.

Certain skin-resurfacing procedures such as microdermabrasion, chemical peel, and laser treatments may be recommended along with facial fillers and injectables for optimal results. For example, skin resurfacing may improve vertical lipstick lines while Restylane adds fullness to thinned lips. Skin resurfacing, however, must be performed at a different time because patients may prefer to lie down after the procedure. This conflicts with postoperative instructions for facial fillers and injectables, where patients cannot lie down for four hours after the injection.

There are other considerations for using energy-based-device treatments, facial fillers, or injectables to achieve a fully satisfactory result. Any facial treatment that involves the use of heat such as a laser should not be combined with facial fillers or injectables because these treatments often produce a feeling of laziness and a tendency to lie down and rest. Thermage should not be combined with facial fillers or injectables because the combination may cause undue pressure in blood flow to the treated area.

The recommendations for specific facial fillers and injectables in the same location or at the same time may vary among manufacturers and doctors. Some manufacturers may advise that only one type of filler or injectable should be used in a particular area, because if an adverse reaction occurs, the likelihood for proper diagnosis is greater. Others feel using certain fillers or injectables at the same time is acceptable, providing that the skin layer injected for each injectable or filler is different. You will need to consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon when making the decision about combining facial fillers, injectables, and skin-resurfacing procedures.

Commonly Combined Surgical Procedures

The following surgical procedures have been known to be combined when necessary to achieve the maximum benefit:

  • brow or forehead liftfacelift and neck-lift.
  • breast augmentation and tummy tuck, plus a possible liposuction procedure (only a small amount of localized fat removal is recommended).
  • tummy tuck and liposuction (only a small amount of localized fat removal is recommended).
  • liposuction and abdominal etching.
  • tummy tuck and facelift, plus possibly liposuction (only a small amount of localized fat removal is recommended).
  • liposuction and facelift.
  • facelifts and fat transplants.
  • certain non-invasive and minimally invasive procedures, plus a surgical procedure.

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