Smoking and Cosmetic Surgery
By Michael A. Devlin, MD on February 04, 2015
Smoking before Cosmetic Surgery is a disaster waiting to happen. I tell my patients to quit smoking for six weeks before surgery and six weeks after surgery.
Why? Simply stated, smoking causes wound healing complications.
– Perhaps the entire incision doesn’t heal.
– Perhaps the tissue that has been stitched dies.
– Perhaps the incision does heal but with a poorer scar.
– You will heal slower.
I routinely nicotine test my patients several times before surgery and I will nicotine test my patients the DAY of surgery!
Because this issue is so important to me, I have been known to cancel a patient the day of surgery because of a failed Nicotine test.
I also will randomly nicotine tests patients during their six weeks recovery period.
I recently had a tummy tuck patient who had one small area of his incision that was slower to heal. I ended up treating this area of her incision for several extra weeks. He stopped smoking at my request prior to surgery. However, when he failed a nicotine test at a post operative appointment, she admitted the truth. I once again explained that smoking causes healing issues. It really does! It is difficult to understand this concept and believe that smoking has such a tremendous impact on healing, however, time and time again smokers prove to have more complicated postoperative courses.
I tell patients this all of the time. For elective surgeries, YOU have a choice. I strive to for you to have the best results. This is not only about surgical skill and techniques but also about patient education.
To view my detailed smoking policy click here
Michael Devlin, M.D.
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Little Rock, AR 72211
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