In 2017, Americans spent more than $6.5 billion on cosmetic surgery. From breast augmentation to eyelid surgery, procedures to change our appearance are becoming increasingly common. However, these surgeries don’t come without risks. For many people, the thought of undergoing surgery is very scary. If you’re considering plastic surgery, it’s important that you’re aware of both the benefits and the risks. Here are some of the most common and most talked about cosmetic surgery complications.
Hematoma is a pocket of blood that resembles a large, painful bruise. It occurs in 1 percent of breast augmentation procedures. It’s also the most common complication after a facelift, occurring in an average of 1 percent of patients. It occurs more commonly in males than in females.
Hematoma is a risk in nearly all surgeries. Treatment sometimes includes additional operations to drain the blood if the collection of blood is large or growing rapidly. This may require another procedure in the operating room and sometimes additional anesthetic.
Seroma is a condition that occurs when serum, or sterile body fluid, pools beneath the surface of the skin, resulting in swelling and sometimes pain. This can occur after any surgery, and it’s the most common complication following a tummy tuck, occurring in 15 to 30 percent of patients.
Because seromas can become infected, they’re often drained with a needle. This effectively removes them, although there’s a chance of recurrence.
As with any surgery, some blood loss is expected. However, uncontrolled blood loss can lead to a drop in blood pressure with potentially deadly outcomes.
Blood loss can happen while on the operating table, but also internally, after surgery.
Though postoperative care includes steps to reduce the risk of infection, it remains one of the more common complications of plastic surgery.
For instance, infections occur in 1.1 to 2.5 percent trusted Source of people who undergo breast augmentation.
The skin infection cellulitis may occur after surgery. In some cases, infections can be internal and severe, requiring intravenous (IV) antibiotics.
The potential for nerve damage is present in many different types of surgical procedures. Numbness and tingling are common after plastic surgery and can be signs of nerve damage. Most often the nerve damage is temporary, but in some cases, it can be permanent.
Most women experience a change in sensitivity after breast augmentation surgery, and 15 percent experience permanent changes in nipple sensation.