Plastic surgery is a specialization within the medical field that focuses on reconstructive and enhancement procedures. The best plastic surgeon is someone who has received training in cosmetic and reconstructive surgery and has experience. These unique skills and training set them apart from other surgeons. Below are a few ways in which plastic surgeons are different from other surgeons:
1. They Undergo Extensive Training
Plastic surgeons undergo comprehensive training that differentiates them from other surgeons. Their training is focused on cosmetic and reconstructive procedures, requiring unique skills and knowledge. The best plastic surgeon may be one who has undergone the following education and has surgical experience as well. Here are a few components of the training received by plastic surgeons:
Medical school: Like all doctors and surgeons, plastic surgeons must complete a four-year undergraduate degree and then attend medical school for another four years to earn a Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree.
Residency: After medical school, plastic surgeons must complete a residency program in plastic and reconstructive surgery, lasting about six years. During this time, they receive extensive training in surgical techniques, patient care, and other aspects of care related specifically to plastic surgery.
Fellowship: Some plastic surgeons pursue additional training through a fellowship program. These programs provide advanced training in specialized areas of plastic surgery, such as craniofacial surgery, hand surgery, or microsurgery.
Board certification: Plastic surgeons must be board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) to practice in the United States. To become board-certified, plastic surgeons must pass a rigorous written exam and a comprehensive oral exam and meet other requirements related to their training and experience.
This training gives plastic surgeons a background in medicine and specialized training on procedures relating to plastic surgery. As board-certified surgeons, they are qualified to practice plastic surgery and keep up to date with advancements in their field.
2. They Possess Specialized Techniques
During their education, plastic surgeons acquire a set of surgical strategies that are especially useful in their field. Some of these techniques include:
Flap surgery: This reconstructive procedure involves transferring and repositioning tissue from one body area to another. It is commonly used in a variety of plastic surgery procedures, particularly for facial and body reconstruction after trauma or cancer removal.
Tissue expansion: Tissue expansion is another common technique plastic surgeons use to produce or restore normal skin tissue. It involves using an inflatable device surgically placed beneath the skin to stretch it gradually over time. This technique can increase the size of tissues, such as those on the face or breasts, and even create a new tissue flap.
These techniques and others are designed to be used in a variety of surgical situations related to plastic surgery. They aren’t often used outside of plastic surgery procedures.
3. They Focus on Aesthetics
Unlike other surgeons, plastic surgeons are experts in reconstruction and cosmetic surgery. This means they are often performing surgeries that enhance their patient’s aesthetic look. Plastic surgeons work with patient’s who are interested in changing aspects of their physical appearance. They can also assist those who require reconstructive surgery due to bodily trauma or severe burns. In most situations, they emphasize achieving natural-looking results and improving the patient’s appearance, while other surgeons focus on mending and restoring bodily functions.
4. They Offer a Wide Range of Unique Procedures
Plastic surgeons perform a broad range of procedures that are unique to their field. Some of these procedures include:
Rhinoplasty (nose surgery): This is a surgical procedure performed by plastic surgeons to reshape or alter the appearance and/or function of the nose.
Liposuction: This is a surgical procedure performed by plastic surgeons to remove excess fat from specific body areas. Liposuction aims to improve the body’s contour and proportion by removing stubborn pockets of fat that are resistant to other weight loss strategies.
Blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery): This is a surgical procedure performed to improve the appearance of the eyelids by removing excess skin, fat, and muscle from the upper or lower eyelids. This surgery can be done for cosmetic or practical reasons.
Breast augmentation(breast enlargement): This is a surgical procedure performed to increase the size and enhance the shape of the breasts. This is done by placing breast implants either behind the breast tissue or under the chest muscle.
These procedures and others are primarily performed by plastic surgeons exclusively. The training plastic surgeons receive prepares them to perform a variety of surgical procedures for cosmetic or reconstructive reasons.
Find the Best Plastic Surgeon Near You!
Plastic surgeons differ from other types of surgeons in their focus on cosmetic and reconstructive surgeries, their specialized training after medical school as well as the techniques that are unique to the field. Whether you or a loved one have experienced bodily trauma or are seeking to alter your physical appearance, a plastic surgeon can assist you through that process. Consider booking a consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon near you.