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What are the psychological after-effects of plastic surgery?

Stuart A. Linder, MD
Plastic Surgery

In general, the majority of patients are aware of what their postoperative results will be after their cosmetic surgical procedure.  As a board certified plastic surgeon, I am also, in some sense, a psychotherapist in that I need to understand during the initial consultation, each patients desires and realistic expectations for the procedure that they ensue.  Patients who have unrealistic expectations can be extraordinarily depressed postoperatively, and it is important that we attempt to triage this patient's preoperatively and not operate on them.  It is not uncommon for patient's to have postoperative depression, even after an uneventful surgical procedure.  Thankfully, with the majority of these patients, this resolves over a short period of time.  However, there are those who may require psychotherapy, especially those who have severe body dysmorphic disorders, or self-image problems.  Again, we attempt in all cases to determine the mental status and psychological decisions made by each and every patient prior to undergoing elective surgery.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.