Tuesday, April 23, 2013

How to Prepare for Plastic Surgery?

In the last decade or so, going under the knife has become a trend in the name of beauty. Very often, we encounter news about celebrity makeovers. A layperson isn’t really very far behind, in terms of expenditure involved with look enhancement. Those who have already been under the knife would swear about the importance of preparation before the surgery. After all, makeover surgeries can alter one’s appearance to a great degree.

Every surgery demands proper health attention and planning prior to the operation. This is true especially in case of a cosmetic surgery. Although there can be slight variations in terms of preparation depending upon the surgery to be performed, the importance of mental preparation cannot be underplayed in every surgery. One needs to prepare their mind and body for the surgery, and also plan on how to go about handling the recovery phase, post the surgery.

Your first and foremost consideration over here would be to gather as much information as you can about the surgery. One is advised to spend good amount of time with their doctor to know the pros and cons involved with the treatment. Potential health complications should be known in advance to deal with the possible drawbacks of a surgical treatment. After all, not every surgery guarantees success!

As much as mental preparation is required, physical preparation also plays a great role over here. The initial discussions with the doctor will leave you with some prescribed medications to be taken for a certain period of time before the surgery is conducted. For instance, if there are any detected nutritional deficiencies found in your body, you will be asked to take some nutritional supplement for a week or two to ensure that your body doesn’t lack all the essentials that are required to perform a successful surgery.

Other prerequisites require one to quit smoking. Smokers would be asked to stay away from cigarettes for nearly 2 weeks before the surgery is performed. Once these nuts and bolts are fixed, one should focus on measures that require healthcare attention post the surgery. You should have a clear idea about the recovery duration. You can’t expect to continue the routine 9-5 tasks the following day, post the surgery. Plan your holidays and other events based on the recovery timeframe because you will be resting your body entirely during the recovery phase.

Your best bet would be to have someone around you for support during the entire ordeal. Choose the place in advance where you are going to stay after the surgery. Fill the chosen place with all the required components so that you don’t have to throw an arm and a leg afterwards to acquire all the essential items. Don’t forget to make arrangements for your home ride after the surgery is performed. Usually, one is advised to protect their skin from sun, especially in case of a skin procedure.

Irrespective of the outcome of the surgery, don’t expect it to be your last visit to the clinic. Almost every type of plastic surgery demands revisits more than a couple of times. Because of the complicated nature of the treatment, the surgeon will have to inspect your condition in regular intervals. One should plan about their revisits in advance so that one doesn’t miss any appointments with the surgeon. We all know that most surgeons are super busy guys and they hate people who play around with their valuable time.

Those who have a successful surgery in their first attempt, often try to replicate their success with other body parts as well. What one should realize over here is that not every surgery might have a successful outcome. As such, bad results post the surgery can be rectified with the aid of a corrective surgery. That being said, individuals who have burned their hands in the process would vouch for the fact that natural beauty is any day better than the plastic surgery nightmares!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Cosmetic Breast Surgery, Procedure and Associated Risks

Breast surgery has been around for more than a century. More recently, an increasing number of women have been opting for cosmetic breast surgery, mainly augmentation (to enlarger size) surgery.

According to an estimate, in 2005 in the US alone, a whopping 260,000 women underwent cosmetic breast surgery, more than doubling the amount of surgeries conducted in 1998. In the UK too, breast augmentation surgeries have more than doubled between the years 2002 to 2008.

Despite the fact that cosmetic surgery may afford benefits to the woman in the form of confidence in self, or in post-mastectomy (removal of breast to control the spread of breast cancer) women, there are some very real risks/side-effects associated with the procedure.

Some of these are discussed in the following segments.

History of cosmetic breast surgery

Breast augmentation surgery involves placing of a silicone gel-filled implant in the intrices of breasts with the aim to enhance size.

Implants made of different materials have been tried in the past; use of silicone implants began in 1962. The commonest kind of breast implants used today are saline and silicone implants.

• Saline implants – as the name suggests, these are filled with sterile salt water which is either pre-filled or can be filled in at the time of the procedure. Saline implants requires a smaller incision (as compared to silicone implants) – this is usually taken under the crease of the breast or the armpit and thus is very hard to detect.

• Silicone gel-filled implants – are made of a silicone gel and come only in pre-filled variety. Although, these require a much larger incisions, they are much safer than the saline ones – chances of an infection greatly decrease with silicone based implants.

The FDA has approved silicon filled gel implants manufactured by 2 companies, Allergan and Mentor.

Although a number of different techniques are used for the procedure, surgeons are always looking for improvements to minimize the risk of infections, side-effects and patient discomfort.

Due to an increase in the number of reported cases of connective tissue diseases (CTDs), the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1992 banned the use of these implants in breast augmentation procedures (allowing their use only for research purposes) (Kessler, 1992).

Subsequent research findings, however, suggested that breast implants were not associated with increased risk of CTDs (Kjoller et al., 2002; Lipworth et al., 2004). Based on the recommendations of these studies, FDA withdrew the ban in 2006.

Side-effects/Risks associated with cosmetic breast surgery

According to the FDA, there are numerous side-effects or risks associated with cosmetic breast surgery and implants; some of these are:

• Uneven breasts are a very realistic and unwanted side-effect of breast cosmetic surgery; defeats the very purpose of why you would want a surgery in the first place.

• Pain or discomfort either in the nipples, breast, neck or back – with/without thinning or shrinking of the surrounding skin.

• Change in the way your breast or nipple feels – breasts may feel colder than they would normally do.

• Rupture of the silicone gel implants with or without occurrence of symptoms.

• Capsular contraction due to formation of scar tissue around the implants.

• Repeat surgeries if things don’t go right the first time around.

• Sever infections like toxic shock syndrome can occur – infection of surgical wounds with microorganisms is the suggested mechanism. Sometimes, the infection may be severe enough to necessitate removal of the implant.

Notwithstanding the above mentioned risks, anecdotal evidence suggests that breast implant surgery seems to be quite safe. Research suggests that there seems to be no correlation between the procedure and increased risk of breast infections.

To conclude, at the present moment in time, if scrupulous surgical procedures are followed and care taken to avoid infections, breast augmentation surgery seems to be a safe enough procedure.

References Cited

Kessler, D. A., 1992, The basis of the FDA's decision on breast implants: N Engl J Med, v. 326, no. 25, p. 1713-1715.

Kjoller, K. et al., 2002, Epidemiological investigation of local complications after cosmetic breast implant surgery in Denmark: Ann Plast.Surg, v. 48, no. 3, p. 229-237.

Lipworth, L., R. E. Tarone, and J. K. McLaughlin, 2004, Silicone breast implants and connective tissue disease: an updated review of the epidemiologic evidence: Ann Plast.Surg, v. 52, no. 6, p. 598-601.

Monday, April 1, 2013

What You Must Know About Diabetes

Diabetes Mellitus is a disease in which the pancreas produces little or no insulin, a hormone that helps the body’s tissues absorb glucose (sugar) so it can be used as a source of energy. The condition may also develop if muscle, fat, and liver cells respond poorly to insulin. In people with diabetes, glucose levels build up in the blood and urine, causing excessive urination, thirst, hunger, and problems with fat and protein metabolism. Diabetes mellitus differs from the less common diabetes insipidus, which is caused by lack of the hormone vasopressin that controls the amount of urine secreted.

Diabetes is most common in adults over 45 years of age; in people who are overweight or physically inactive; in individuals who have an immediate family member with diabetes; and in people of African, Hispanic, and Native American descent. The highest rate of diabetes in the world occurs in Native Americans. More women than men have been diagnosed with the disease.

There are two types of diabetes.In type 1 diabetes, which usually starts in childhood, the pancreas stops making insulin altogether. It is also called insulin-dependent diabetes. In type 2 diabetes, which starts in adulthood (and in some teenagers) the body still makes some insulin. But it doesn't make enough insulin, or the body can't use it properly. It is also called non-insulin-dependent diabetes.

Diabetes is detected by measuring the amount of glucose in the blood after an individual has fasted (abstained from food) for about eight hours. In some cases, physicians diagnose diabetes by administering an oral glucose tolerance test, which measures glucose levels before and after a specific amount of sugar has been ingested. Another test being developed for Type 1 diabetes looks for specific antibodies (proteins of the immune system that attack foreign substances) present only in persons with diabetes. This test may detect Type 1 diabetes at an early stage, reducing the risk of complications from the disease.

Once diabetes is diagnosed, treatment consists of controlling the amount of glucose in the blood and preventing complications. Depending on the type of diabetes, this can be accomplished through regular physical exercise, a carefully controlled diet, and medication.

Individuals with Type 1 diabetes require insulin injections, often two to four times a day, to provide the body with the insulin it does not produce. The amount of insulin needed varies from person to person and may be influenced by factors such as a person’s level of physical activity, diet, and the presence of other health disorders. Typically, individuals with Type 1 diabetes use a meter several times a day to measure the level of glucose in a drop of their blood obtained by pricking a fingertip. They can then adjust the amount of insulin injected, physical exercise, or food intake to maintain the blood sugar at a normal level. People with Type 1 diabetes must carefully control their diets by distributing meals and snacks throughout the day so as not to overwhelm the ability of the insulin supply to help cells absorb glucose. They also need to eat foods that contain complex sugars, which break down slowly and cause a slower rise in blood sugar levels.

For persons with Type 2 diabetes, treatment begins with diet control, exercise, and weight reduction, although over time this treatment may not be adequate. People with Type 2 diabetes typically work with nutritionists to formulate a diet plan that regulates blood sugar levels so that they do not rise too swiftly after a meal. A recommended meal is usually low in fat (30 percent or less of total calories), provides moderate protein (10 to 20 percent of total calories), and contains a variety of carbohydrates, such as beans, vegetables, and grains. Regular exercise helps body cells absorb glucose even ten minutes of exercise a day can be effective. Diet control and exercise may also play a role in weight reduction, which appears to partially reverse the body’s inability to use insulin

Diabetes Mellitus is a disease in which the pancreas produces little or no insulin, a hormone that helps the body’s tissues absorb glucose (sugar) so it can be used as a source of energy. The condition may also develop if muscle, fat, and liver cells respond poorly to insulin. In people with diabetes, glucose levels build up in the blood and urine, causing excessive urination, thirst, hunger, and problems with fat and protein metabolism. Diabetes mellitus differs from the les...