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Cosmetic & Reconstructive Surgery in Hull, York, Grimsby, Lincoln & London

Guide to Cosmetic & Reconstructive Surgery

When you consider having cosmetic surgery, it is essential that you think carefully about what you want and why you want the changes. To obtain a good result, your reasons for the procedure and expectation of outcome must be realistic in addition to having a trained surgeon who understands your needs.

Cosmetic and reconstructive surgery in York, Lincoln, Hull and Grimsby, like all operations involves an element of risk even though the majority of patients end up with satisfactory outcome from their procedures. It is important to remember that NO surgery or surgeon is 100% risk free and complications are often not a result of poor care or negligence but is dependent on the type of procedure and severity of the problem being addressed. Revision surgery is sometimes required in 5-10% of all surgical patients and about 10-15% of all cosmetic surgery patients. The rate of revision varies between different cosmetic procedures being as low as 5% in some and as much as 25% in others.

Reasons for revision are often due to:

  • Minor revision of a component to achieve a more satisfactory result
  • To address a complication that arose from the surgery
  • Patients with more severe primary problems often have a greater and sometimes inevitable need for revision
  • To address specific aspects of the surgery in a dissatisfied patient

The measure of success of a procedure is a satisfied patient and is dependent on the following:

  • Expectation; realistic and compliant patients obtain better results
  • The specific type of procedure undertaken (highly variable)
  • Surgeon's expertise and level of communication with patient
  • Tissue quality is important particularly in certain procedures as better results may be obtained in younger, non-smokers or those with better (less elastic) tissues

Cosmetic Surgery Checklist

The following checklist will help you decide what is best for you and help you towards attaining a more worthwhile surgical experience.

  1. Changes desired: Research and find out all you can about the treatment you want. Be precise as to the change you hope to see and the reasons why
  2. Outpatient consultation and GP advice: It is helpful to speak to your GP to get initial guidance and to point you in the right direction. Make inquiries from the hospitals about availability of the service before your consultation
  3. Surgeon's expertise: Find a surgeon with the right qualifications who is on the specialist GMC register and is experienced in the area of surgery. You may ask to see evidence (photographs / testimonials) of past procedures
  4. Medical complications: Remember that NO procedure or surgeon is 100% risk free. Complications are sometimes inexplicable, can occur randomly or maybe of multi-factorial cause and less often due to poor medical care
  5. Expectations: All types of surgery have certain limitations as to what is technically achievable in a given patient. The most important determinant of outcome is the level of expectation; the more realistic it is the better the overall outcome. Remember that cosmetic surgery may turn the natural ageing clock a few years back but does not stop it ticking forward hence recurrence may occur
  6. Timing & Aftercare: This is as important as the surgery itself, you should be aware of whom to contact and the follow up arrangements. Arrange surgery at a convenient time with adequate homecare and support in place
  7. Independence: To arrive at a decision the assistance you need is in deciding what, if any, surgery is required. The information you receive should be balanced, don't be hasty in deciding or be persuaded to have many procedures
  8. Cool-Off Period & Cost: After your initial consultation, take time to decide and ensure you feel at ease with the surgeon. A second consultation before your procedure is recommended. Obtain information on the cost of the primary procedure and the terms for any remedial surgery if required
  9. Surgical Questions: Prepare and write down your questions before your consultation and request written information afterwards to help your recollection


For most procedures complications occur in 5-12%, these are mostly minor and do not need additional surgery. A good understanding and trust are the most important means to reduce the risk of an adverse outcome and deal with any problems that do arise.

Complication can be divided according to:

  • Timing:
    • Immediate (within hours of surgery)
    • Early (few days post-op)
    • Late (months / years)
  • General or Specific (to your operation)
  • Minor or major (requires significant intervention)
General complications:
  • Wound bleeding (occasionally needs surgical intervention)
  • Infection (usually settles with antibiotics, may rarely be life threatening)
  • Wound breakdown and delayed healing (normal healing two to four weeks)
  • Hypertrophy (reactive) scars that takes longer to settle (~5% incidence)
  • Recurrence (inevitable sometimes or due to new factors)
  • Under / overcorrection (subjective; patient's / surgeon's judgement)
  • Numbness and altered sensation around / beyond surgical scar is common
  • Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) and Pulmonary Embolism (PE) are fortunately rare and more common with longer operations and immobility; we take precautions to reduce these risks.
  • Anaesthetic complications will usually be discussed by the Anaesthetist

We are committed to working closely with you to deal with any complications that arise since a satisfied patient is our ultimate assessment of a successful surgery.

Other factors that influence outcome:
  • Effective communication involves surgeon giving adequate level of information, to an understanding patient who is asking the right questions
  • Healthier patients with more normal weights will often achieve better outcomes
  • Complications & Consent process is never exhaustive since it is practically impossible to truly know all possible complications in a given patient.
  • Scar quality is most highly dependent on the part of the body, individual family and racial healing differences and time to final wound healing
  • Smoking and some pre-existing medical problems generally increase complication rates particularly wound healing and infections

Consultation Questions & Notes

Click here to download a consultation questions and notes form; this will be completed by your surgeon during your initial consultation.

Contact Us

If you require further information about any of our procedures, you can speak to a plastic surgeon:

Hull 01482 223 553
York 01904 820 449
Lincoln 01522 899 808
London 020 7205 4448

This website is designed to supply useful information but is not to be regarded as advice specific to any particular case and the information contained is by no means exhaustive. It does not replace the need for a thorough consultation. Restore Surgery accepts no liability for any decision taken by the reader in respect of the treatment they decide to undertake.