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Reconstructive Surgery FAQs

What is the difference between Cosmetic and Reconstructive surgery? Typically, the difference exists in the purpose of surgery . Cosmetic surgery performed with the primary goal of improving one's appearance. Reconstructive surgery is performed to improve personal health, body function or alleviate disease and is often considered medically necessary .

What procedures are considered reconstructive surgery? The line between cosmetic and reconstructive surgery can sometimes be blurred. Generally, reconstructive surgery improves both appearance and health . Some examples of reconstructive surgery include:
-  Tumor Removal
-  Laceration Repair
-  Scar Revision
-  Hand Surgery
-  Breast Reduction
-  Breast Reconstruction (Following surgical breast cancer treatment)
-  Burn Care -  Reconstructive Rhinoplasty (to improve nose air flow)
-  Eyelid Surgery (to improve field of vision)

What benefits does Reconstructive surgery provide? Medically necessary reconstructive surgery provides obvious health benefits . But even reconstructive surgery considered optional can help patients rid themselves of physical abnormalities. Reconstructive surgery has also been known to provide patients with higher self-esteem and confidence.

Who is a good candidate for Reconstructive surgery? Ideal patients for reconstructive surgery have realistic expectations and a good understanding of the procedure. Typically reconstructive surgery patients fall into one of two groups. The first group consists of those born with an undesired condition such as webbed or extra fingers, a cleft-lip or abnormally developing breasts. In the second group are those who developed abnormalities through an accident, disease or even age.

Does Reconstructive surgery have possible risks and complications?
All surgeries have risks.
The specific risks will vary based on the particular reconstructive surgery performed. In general, reconstructive surgery poses a low risk of infection, problems related to anesthesia, excessive bleeding, bruising, slowed healing of the wound and additional surgical problems. Potential complications increase based on the patient's personal health history.

How long does it take to recover from Reconstructive surgery? Most reconstructive surgery procedures require one to two weeks for healing . However, recovery time also depends on the patient and specific reconstructive surgery performed. Some patients are able to return to a normal routine immediately after a reconstructive surgery procedure, while others require several weeks to retain a normal level of functioning. In some cases, the final results are not clears for months.

Does Reconstructive surgery leave any visible scarring? When reconstructive surgery requires incisions, scarring is an inevitable side effect of the procedure. However, reconstructive surgeons are specially trained to minimize scar size and place them in inconspicuous locations .

Is Reconstructive surgery covered by insurance? Usually, reconstructive surgery is covered by insurance if not fully, then partially . However, where the purpose of the procedure is both cosmetic and reconstructive, for example in the case of breast reconstruction following cancer treatment, coverage can vary by insurer and health plan.