You’re not alone if you’ve always assumed cosmetic surgery and plastic surgery were identical. Because a large number of plastic surgeons prefer to concentrate their practice on cosmetic surgery, the words are frequently interchanged.
However, this is incorrect from a technical standpoint. Cosmetic surgery and plastic surgery are closely related but are not identical specialities.
When you’re researching your cosmetic surgery options, you’ll come across two terms: cosmetic surgery and plastic surgery. What is the true difference between them, and why does it matter to you?
What is plastic surgery and how does it work?
Plastic surgery focuses on repairing areas of a person’s body that have been injured due to birth abnormalities, traumas, illnesses, or other ailments. The education for a plastic surgeon differs quite significantly and after finishing their medical degrees, plastic surgeons must complete a multi-year fellowship or residency. After that, they must pass several American Board of Plastic Surgeons examinations and conduct over 300 surgeries on the body, face and breast to be qualified as a board-certified plastic surgeon.
Plastic surgery can be used to treat a variety of issues, including:
- The long-term consequences of traumatic burns.
- Cleft palate is an example of a congenital deformity.
- Lower extremity (particularly the legs) and hand injuries.
- Scars that endure a long time.
Although plastic surgeons may opt to pursue further training in aesthetic surgery and many do, their specialty is mostly in reconstruction.
What is cosmetic surgery and how does it work?
Cosmetic surgery aims to improve symmetry, proportions, and other aesthetically pleasant elements of a patient’s look.
The following are some of the most popular cosmetic surgery procedures:
- Breast augmentations, lifts, and reductions are all common procedures.
- Revitalization of the face (face lifts, nose reshaping, etc.).
- Liposuction and tummy tucks are two body sculpting procedures.
Cosmetic surgery training takes place mostly following residency training. There are currently no residency programs in the United States that focus on cosmetic surgery and as a result, doctors get training in a post-residency fellowship after completing their initial residency.
Regardless of expertise, any certified physician may legally do cosmetic operations, so it’s crucial to do your homework before proceeding with a treatment. To determine the degree of skill in any cosmetic treatment, patients should evaluate the physicians’ entire residency, post-residency training, experience, and practice history.
Key Differences Between The Surgeons
While the distinction between cosmetic and plastic surgery is clear, the distinction between cosmetic and plastic surgeons is a little more complicated.
- They have different objectives.
Although both plastic surgery and cosmetic surgery aim to improve the appearance of the body their objectives, research, and training are distinct.
- Cosmetic surgery improves a person’s appearance.
Cosmetic surgery methods, and operations are all aimed at enhancing a patient’s look. Its main goals are to improve proportion, symmetry, and aesthetic appeal. Cosmetic surgery is always optional since there is no functional benefit.
- Cosmetic surgery mostly includes the following:
- Rejuvenation of skin (dermal fillers, Botox, laser resurfacing)
- Body sculpting (Liposuction, Tummy Tuck)
- Rejuvenation of the face (Brow Lift, Neck Lift, Eyelid Lift, Facelift)
- Breast reconstruction (Breast Reduction, Breast Lift, Breast Augmentation)
- Plastic surgery corrects flaws in the appearance and function of the body.
Plastic surgery is a medical speciality that focuses on repairing body and face deformities caused by illness, burns, trauma, and birth anomalies. It is reconstructive in nature and aims to rectify physical flaws.
Although many plastic surgeons pursue extra training in aesthetic surgery, reconstructive surgery remains the foundation of their education.
In fact, the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery changed its name to the American Society of Plastic Surgery in 1999 to emphasize that plastic and reconstructive surgery are the same.
- The following are examples of plastic surgery procedures:
- Surgery to remove scars
- Surgery on the hands
- Reconstruction of the lower extremities
- Repairing congenital defects (Extremity Defect Repair, Cleft Palate)
- Surgery to treat burns
- Reconstruction of the breasts
Because not all cosmetic doctors are board qualified plastic surgeons, it’s crucial to double-check their qualifications, the doctor’s experience, patient satisfaction rating, malpractice insurance, quality of service, and proven competence with respect to that specific cosmetic procedure prior to committing to your treatment.
Most importantly, remember to be upfront and honest about your questions, objectives, and any other issues you may have throughout your consultation. When making recommendations, your cosmetic surgeon will be able to take all of this information into consideration, ensuring that the method you choose is the appropriate approach for your surgical needs.