Post-Operative Care After Plastic Surgery
Post-operative care after surgery helps patients achieve their optimal results. The mainstays of the first week of surgical recovery are skin care, rest, ice, elevation, preventing bruising and controlling swelling. As patients enter the second week of recovery our efforts switch to focus on contour and scar management and massage. Specific recommendations are tailored to each surgery and patient needs.
Elevation and Icing
Surgical recovery usually begins with elevation and icing. To make icing the face easier, we recommend the TheraPearl Reusable Hot & Cold Therapy Face or Eye Mask. These masks utilize gel beads to better focus the cooling effect of the mask. Elevation of the head can be achieved by sleeping on a couple of pillows, however, the Brentwood Home Zuma Therapeutic Foam Bed Wedge Pillow makes it easier and more comfortable to maintain the elevation in any sleeping position.
To help with pain control and better skin hydration during the healing process we all recommend the Restore and Repair line from Ageless Millennial Aesthetics. The Restore and Repair line of skin care creams and serums includes the CBD and hyaluronic acid-infused CBD Restorative Cream and the Triple Peptide Repair Serum. This combination helps provide the hydration and essential building blocks the skin needs to recover after surgery.
Bruising and Swelling
In addition to icing and elevation, for all surgeries we recommend, most patients take anti-bruising supplements, such as Boiron Arnica Montana and Bruizex (Bromelain), starting before surgery and continuing for about a month after surgery. These supplements help to prevent and resolve bruising after surgery.
At about 10 – 14 days after surgery, post-operative scar management strategies are begun. Sunscreens, such as Neutrogena Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen, help block the UV rays and prevent the scars from staying dark/too pink. Gentle massage of the incisions and operative area encourages blood flow, helps to breast down scar tissue, and keeps the scars from getting too raised. Silicone-based scar gels and or sheets are recommended to help encourage optimal scar maturation. Silicone Scar Sheets or Mederma Advanced Scar Gel can be used on any scarring from minor procedures to large surgical scars.
For cosmetic surgery patients, there are custom fabricated to cover the scars of typical cosmetic surgeries. For breast surgery patients, Biodermis produces 100% silicone scar sheets that are custom shaped to curve around the areola and base of the breast. For belly surgeries, BioDermis also produces sheets custom fabricated for the typical tummy tuck scar.
These strategies are continued for the full scar maturation period of a year or more.
Compression after body contouring help to control swelling and contour irregularities that can result after liposuction and skin removal surgeries. The day after body contouring surgery patients are placed into a Stage One compression garment. This garment is made of a stiff material that provides a high amount of compression. Patients often purchase additional Stage One garments for their convenience.
After about 2 weeks of wearing this garment, patients are encouraged to purchase Stage Two garments to complete in their healing process. These later stage garments provide more even compression and are less bulky then Stage One garments.
Deluca Plastic Surgery recommends Merena Recovery garments. These garments provide firm, form-fitting compression to help control the swelling that occurs in the weeks after surgery. These garments are tailored to your specific operation.
Women’s Stage One (Weeks 1-2) and Stage Two (Weeks 3-6) Garments :
- Compression of the Abdomen and Back
- Compression of the Abdomen, Back, and Thighs
- Chin and Neck Compression
- Arm Compression
For men, we recommend Underworks compression garments. Underworks garments come in a range of styles and have several models tailored specifically to the post-operative management of gynecomastia and FTM patients.