Thursday, December 12, 2013

Who Invented Cosmetic Surgery

From nose jobs to Botox, cosmetic surgery has become a phenomenon, especially in the United States. As the Baby Boomers continue to show signs of their age, they continue to fight back with an arsenal of chemicals and surgical procedures intended to help them keep looking young for years to come. If you're wondering how all of this activity began, you have to go back many thousands of years.


Cosmetic surgery is an offshoot of plastic surgery. Plastic surgery actually started in India around 800 B.C. Although the methods were not advanced, they were meant to improve physical features causing health problems. Skin grants were one of the earliest forms of plastic surgery practiced. Dr. John Peter Mettauer was one of the first major names in plastic surgery in the United States thanks to his development of cleft palate surgery in 1827. After World War I, many returning soldiers required plastic surgery to treat their injuries. However, the real heyday of plastic surgery began in the 1960s and 1970s when a wider group of consumers were able to access the benefits. With booming incomes in the 1980s, plastic surgery began branching off into cosmetic surgery, which has become incredibly popular today.


Every year in the United States more than 11 million cosmetic surgery procedures are performed. Not all of these involve "going under the knife." The largest percentage of procedures, such as Botox injections or microdermabrasion, do not require any type of surgery. Between 1997 and 2005, the number of cosmetic surgeries performed actually increased by 444 percent. Liposuction, nose jobs and breast augmentations are the most frequently performed surgical procedures, while chemical peels, microdermabrasion, Botox and Restylane were the most popular non-surgical procedures.


As the statistics above illustrate, cosmetic surgery embraces a wide range of different types of procedures. The difference between these procedures and those classified as plastic surgery are their medical value. Most nose jobs are done for non-medical reasons so they are classified as cosmetic surgery. Among the other types of procedures found in this category would be some breast reduction surgeries (although these can be done for medical reasons in some cases), tummy tucks, collagen injections, chin augmentation, face lifts and eyelid surgery.


Although rarely performed for medical reasons, cosmetic surgery can have many benefits for patients. For one, most report a boost in their confidence. If you have a nose that is too pointy or a chin you think is nonexistent, this can affect the way you feel about yourself. Correcting those perceived defects can improve your self image dramatically. Most of the procedures do leave the patients looking better. Liposuction, for example, can help eliminate pockets of fat that would be unappealing. Face lifts can help reduce the appearance of wrinkles and make the patient's face look younger.


Despite the benefits, there are drawbacks to consider as well. The first drawback is the cost. Health insurance rarely covers the cost of cosmetic surgery so the entire hefty bill will need to be paid out-of-pocket or financed through the surgeon's office. Complications can occur which can lead to infections, deformities and even death. Plus, the results may not be satisfying, especially for patients who had unrealistic expectations. Cases of cosmetic surgery addiction have also been reported. In these cases, patients have many procedures done but are never happy enough with the outcome so they keep returning for more cosmetic surgery.

Tags: plastic surgery, cosmetic surgery, nose jobs, United States, cosmetic surgery