It’s difficult to turn on the news today, or read any health literature without being made aware of the many detriments to your health caused by tobacco use. However for those patients that have not yet quit smoking or using other tobacco products and also wish to have plastic surgery – there are even added risks.
No matter how young you are, or even how healthy you are despite your tobacco use – there can be dramatic and devastating effects if you continue to use tobacco products leading up to your plastic surgery procedure or during your recovery period.
Because tobacco products contain high levels of nicotine, they are especially dangerous to your body’s ability to recover following surgery. One effect of nicotine on your system is that it restricts the flow of blood through your system, including in your body tissues such as the skin and muscles.
Restricted blood flow caused by nicotine can slow your body’s natural healing process. More dramatically, it can also cause the skin around your incision to blacken and even die before healing. Such side effects can be devastating to patients who undergo surgery for cosmetic reasons.
The easiest way to prevent such detrimental effects is to simply stop smoking before undergoing any surgery. You should plan to completely eliminate nicotine from your body 2-4 weeks before your surgery and throughout your entire recovery time. Depending on the nature of your surgery, Dr. Saltz will recommend the best plan to help you heal and completely recover without threat of damage due to nicotine use.
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