People have been concerned about their appearance from the beginning of recorded history. It might sound surprising, but cosmetic surgery has been around for centuries. The tools and methods may differ, but physicians have always searched for ways to make changes to the body of individuals who want a different look. Most of the procedures we see today have been in existence for many years. Their purpose is the same as it used to be, what has changed throughout the years are the tools and the methods used. For example, tattoos and piercings have been popular for centuries; injections and stitching were used to give the body a beautiful and smoother look, and were the beginning of cosmetic surgery. On the other hand, non-invasive surgery came into existence as a medical treatment which made it unnecessary to cut open the body during surgery, for example, non-invasive back surgery is a surgical procedure recommended for patients who suffer chronic neck or back pain. A degenerated painful disc is replaced with a new artificial one. The aim of this procedure is for the patient to regain a normal lifestyle. In Artificial Disc Replacement (ADR), no bones are cut.
Different types of cosmetic surgery
Cosmetic surgery and plastic surgery, are different, however, they are closely related. They both deal with improving a patient’s appearance but their underlying principles are different.
Cosmetic surgery is focused solely on enhancing a person’s physical appearance. This can be performed on all areas of the body including the neck and head. Within the scope of cosmetic surgery are body contouring: liposuction, tummy tuck; facial rejuvenation: brow, neck, eyelids, and facelifts; breast enhancement: lifting, reduction; facial contouring: cheek, or chin enhancement, rhinoplasty; skin rejuvenation: Botox, filler treatments, and laser resurfacing.
Plastic surgery deals with repairing birth defects, reconstruction of normal functions and appearance. Some of these defects are caused by disease, trauma, burns, and birth abnormalities. Basically, the aim of plastic surgery is to correct dysfunctional areas of the human body; therefore, it is reconstructive. Plastic surgeons can perform cosmetic surgery, but they tend to specialize in reconstructive plastic surgery. In 1999, the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons adopted the name American Society of Plastic Surgeons to emphasize the fact that plastic and reconstructive surgery is the same. Some examples of the procedures these surgeons perform are: hand surgery, burn repair surgery, breast reconstruction, lower limb reconstruction, breast reconstruction, congenital defect repair: limb defect repair and cleft palate.
The first cosmetic surgery
As time passed, doctors incorporated cosmetic surgery as a part of plastic surgery. Therefore, cosmetic surgery was born out of reconstructive surgery. This all began in central Asia. Asian physicians used most of the methods used in rhinoplasty today to beautify the shape of the noses of royal family members. Sushruta, an ancient Indian healer, was supposedly one of the first cosmetic surgeons in the world. He was the first person to perform skin grafting around the 6th century BC. He used a piece of skin from another body part to graft on the face to enhance and correct a person’s appearance.