Cosmetic Surgery and You
Mr. Thomas H. RobbinsPlastic & Reconstructive Surgeon
The ability to question and judge ourselves is both humanity's most endearing and dispassionate feature. On the one hand self-evaluation has the potential to empower us toward personal improvement; but alternately, it can also lead to frustration in situations that seem insurmountable. For people who are frustrated with their physical appearance, and see a particular aspect of it as a restriction to achieving self fulfilment, there are many clinical procedures that offer a means to overcoming these hurdles.
If you are interested in finding out more about the ways plastic surgery may help you attain personal satisfaction with your appearance, and have never consulted a surgeon before, this website provides a broad introduction to the process of establishing a balance between your personal aspirations and what is surgically possible. Each individual has their own unique needs when it comes to considering cosmetic surgery, some people are looking for detailed superficial refinements, such as smoother wrinkle lines or fuller lips, while others maybe considering major changes to the symmetrical dimensions of their body's profile, such as; reductions or enlargements to the chin, cheek or breast, re-sculpturing of the nose, or an Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck). To assist you in further understanding how cosmetic surgery works, this website outlines the fundamental process and techniques of surgery, lists common procedures I perform, and details the importance of a medical consultation.
I hope you find this website concise and informative, and wish you all the best in your future endeavours.
2. Clinical Process
For those considering cosmetic surgery for the first time, the steps below outline a basic guide of how the clinical process proceeds.
- A personal desire to enhance your appearance
- Investigation of available procedures, and the experience and location of potential plastic surgeons
- Consult with a surgeon to discuss individual goals and surgical possibilities
- Consider the benefits and risks outlined by your surgeon
- Option-1: Decision not to proceed with surgery. Re-evaluation of your current appearance as a symbol of your unique individuality, or
- Option-2: Consult another surgeon for a second opinion, or
- Option-3: Decision to proceed with surgery. Second† consultation with surgeon to clarify any further questions and confirm specific surgical procedures
- Undergo surgical procedures as agreed between yourself and your surgeon
- Post-operative recovery, including up to three further clinical examinations‡ (depending on individual requirements)
† Complex procedures may necessitate additional discussions between the patient and their surgeon.
‡ Some minor procedures may only require a single consultation and no post-operative care, such as Collagen or Botox injections.
3. Cosmetic Surgery
All enhancements to personal appearance, whether it is through surgical procedures or daily grooming habits, is concerned with changing the physical properties of the skin. From a medical point of view there are two general methods of altering the skin's appearance, by manipulating the structure of the skin itself or by re-shaping the underlying areas of the body that determine the skin's contours.
The structure of the skin can be altered by various techniques to remove unwanted blemishes such as wrinkles, moles or discolourations. Some options are: Botox injections, to relax the skin; Chemical peels that remove the skin's surface layer, which leads to the growth of new skin cells; and surgically removing a section of skin for the purpose of eliminating a blemish, or to stretch the remaining skin tighter over the muscle and bone structure.
Making changes to the skin's contours by re-shaping underlying areas of the body utilises three broad surgical techniques, the removal, the augmentation (addition), and the re-sculpture of a particular part of the body. Depending on an individual's desire to reduce, enlarge or otherwise modify a specific aspect of their appearance, these procedures focus on many varying elements of the anatomy in order to achieve an overall symmetry of appearance, for example: Rhinoplasty can re-sculpture the nose's bone and cartilage, but may also require a reduction to the width of the nostrils; likewise a Breast Reduction or Enlargement inevitably requires the realignment of the nipples in relation to the modified shape of the breasts.
The various combinations of surgical procedures available means that, any decision to enhance your appearance needs to be considered in relation to how it will combine with other individual body features, and what specific procedures are best suited to achieving the desired result. So while the procedures listed above describe the different areas of the body which can be re-shaped by surgical methods, they should be viewed on the assumption that an actual operation can be a combination of many smaller procedures, such as a Facelift which can include the tightening of the facial skin, lip enhancement and a browlift (to name a few of the options available), and that each operation needs to be designed to suit the requirements of each person's individual body and goals.
4. Common Surgical Procedures
Performed by surgeon Mr. Thomas Robbins.
|rhinoplasty (nose surgery)||face lift|
|inverted nipple correction||breast reduction|
|breast augmentation||lip enhancement (surgical)|
|breast implant removal||browlift|
|ear reconstruction||general reconstruction|
|head & neck surgery||cheek implants|
|breast uplift||hand surgery|
(male breast reduction)
|breast reconstruction||skin cancer surgery|
|tendon repair||vasectomy reversal|
|microsurgery||otoplasty (ear correction)|
|scar revision||chin implants|
*Operative procedures require full operating theatre facilities and differing levels of hospital recovery time.
**Non-Operative procedures can be performed in medical clinics and in most cases patients can return home immediately.
5. Medical Consultations
A medical consultation is a time for you to discuss your individual aspirations within a confidential environment, and understand more about how your ideal-physical-image relates to the psychological and technical aspects of cosmetic or corrective surgery. The medical procedures listed above are provided as a general guide to the possibilities offered by medical science. However, achieving a balance between the social and psychological issues surrounding changes to a person's appearance and the practical limitations of the human body can only be fully understood on an individual basis.
A small amount of preparation before meeting your surgeon can help determine what surgical options may be appropriate to your needs. This preparation requires nothing more than taking the time to clarify in your own mind what you intend to achieve in the final outcome. A few questions you might ask yourself are:
- What will I achieve by .......?insert own idea here (eg. reduce wrinkles, smaller nose)
- Why do I want to achieve this?
- How will I know when this is achieved?
Possible answers to these question could be, (1) I want to reduce my wrinkles so I will look younger. (2) I want to look younger, because I feel younger than I look. (3) I will have achieved this when I can see and feel smoother skin.
While you will have different answers to these questions depending on your individual situation and desires, the important point to look for in your answers is that you are considering cosmetic surgery for your own benefit and not someone or something else. It is your body you are altering, so to appreciate the result it has to be your personal desires that you are achieving.
If you have difficulty formulating or answering questions of this nature, this should be the starting point of your discussion with a surgeon. A sympathetic surgeon will be able to help you determine your goals as well as providing technical information.
Once you have a clear idea of what you want cosmetic surgery to do for you it is a simple matter of determining which surgical procedure is best suited to your individual situation, and this is where the technical experience of your surgeon can help by outlining the various options available and explaining how different procedures apply to your particular situation. As mentioned in the opening section of this article, the consultation is an very important aspect of cosmetic surgery. An effective discussion with a surgeon will clarify your goals and the extent that surgical procedures can help in achieving those goals. Whether you decide to proceed with surgery or not, a consultation will provide you with specific information so that you can have greater confidence in your final decision.
Mr Thomas H. Robbins
Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon
- Royal Australasian College of Surgeons
- Royal College of Surgeons Edinburgh
- Royal College of Surgeons
If you believe a surgical procedure may assist your personal well being and would like to know whether or not it could be the solution you are looking for, Mr. Robbins will be pleased to discuss your personal goals, and tailor his professional experience to your needs so that you may better understand the options available before making a life altering decision.
To book an appointment with Mr. Thomas Robbins contact his Frankston consulting rooms at 6 Plowman Place, Frankston, Vic. 3199 on ph: 03 9783 7449