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Plastic Surgery
(Cosmetic Surgery and Procedures)


Fighting the effects of aging on the outside; your guide to the risks of cosmetic surgical and non-surgical procedures

Trying to fight the effects of aging? Below is a basic guide to the risks involved in both surgical and non-surgical cosmetic procedures. For more information on each procedure, click on the highlighted links of the procedure.

Cosmetic Procedures: Surgical

Breast Augmentation: Breasts are enlarged by placing an implant behind each breast.


  • implants can rupture, leak, and deflate
  • infection
  • hardening of scar tissue around implant, causing breast firmness, pain, distorted shape, or implant movement
  • bleeding
  • pain
  • nipples may get more or less sensitive
  • numbness near incision blood collection around implant/incision
  • calcium deposits around implant
  • harder to find breast lumps and to see breast changes on a mammogram
  • in rare instances, implants can cause anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) - a rare cancer of the immune system

Breast Lift - Extra skin is removed from the breast to raise and reshape breast.


  • scarring
  • skin loss
  • infection loss of feeling in nipples or breast
  • nipples put in the wrong place
  • breasts not symmetrical

Breast Reduction - Fat, tissue, and skin is removed from breast.


  • if nipples and areola are detached, may lose sensation and decreased ability to breastfeed
  • bleeding
  • infection
  • scarring
  • harder to find breast lumps
  • poor shape, size, or position of nipples or breasts

Eyelid Surgery: Extra fat, skin, and muscle in the upper and/or lower eyelid is removed to correct "droopy" eyelids.


Facelift: Extra fat is removed, muscles are tightened, and skin is rewrapped around the face and neck to improve sagging facial skin, jowls, and loose neck skin.


  • infection
  • bleeding under skin
  • scarring
  • irregular earlobes
  • nerve damage causing numbness or inability to move your face
  • hair loss
  • skin damage

Facial Implant: infection feeling of tightness or scarring around implant shifting of implant


  • infection
  • feeling of tightness or scarring around implant
  • shifting of implant

Forehead Lift: Extra skin and muscles that cause wrinkles are removed, eyebrows are lifted, and forehead skin is tightened.


  • infection
  • scarring
  • bleeding under skin
  • eye dryness or irritation
  • impaired eyelid function
  • loss of feeling in eyelid skin
  • injury to facial nerve causing loss of motion or muscle weakness

Lip Augmentation: Material is injected or implanted into the lips to create fuller lips and reduce wrinkles around the mouth.


  • infection
  • bleeding
  • lip asymmetry
  • lumping
  • scarring

Liposuction: Excess fat from a targeted area is removed with a vacuum to shape the body.


  • baggy skin
  • skin may change color and fall off
  • fluid retention
  • toxic shock
  • infection that requires antibiotics or additional surgery
  • burning
  • fat clots in the lungs
  • pain
  • damage to organs if punctured
  • numbness at the surgery site
  • heart problems
  • kidney problems
  • disability
  • death

Nose Surgery: Nose is reshaped by resculpting the bone and cartilage in the nose.


  • infection
  • bursting blood vessels
  • red spots
  • bleeding under the skin
  • scarring

Tummy Tuck: Extra fat and skin in the abdomen is removed, and muscles are tightened to flatten tummy.


  • blood clots
  • infection
  • bleeding
  • scarring
  • fluid accumulation under the skin
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/12/2014

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Plastic Surgery - Surgical Question: Have you had a surgical cosmetic procedure? Are you satisfied with the results? Please share your experience.
Plastic Surgery - Non-Surgical Procedures Question: Have you undergone non-surgical cosmetic procedures? Were you satisfied with the results? Please describe your experience.

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