Combining the functional and aesthetic in cosmetic surgery

functional plastic surgery

Plastic surgery as a discipline has two components. Aesthetic or cosmetic plastic surgery aims to improve the appearance and is elective surgery in that it’s not deemed medically necessary. Although, often thanks to media coverage, many people’s understanding about plastic surgery ends there, the other aspect – reconstructive procedures – are the mainstay of a plastic surgeon’s work.

A large part of Mr Juling Ong’s practice is reconstructive plastic surgery which aims to restore function and appearance as the result of congenital defects, illness or trauma. However, there are some procedures that provide both functional and aesthetic benefits to the patient.

  1. Rhinoplasty or septorhinoplasty

The nose is the dominant feature of the face and plays an important role in providing balance and harmony to our other facial features. Often men and women are dissatisfied with the appearance of their nose and a rhinoplasty is a popular cosmetic surgery procedure.

However, a rhinoplasty that aims to improve the appearance of the nose can also help with breathing problems, particularly if a major nasal shape deformity, whether congenital or as the result of trauma, is directly affecting their ability to breathe through the nose.

A rhinoplasty can increase or reduce the size of the nose, change the shape of the tip or bridge of the nose and the appearance of the nostrils. It can also change the angle between the nose and the upper lip and, if required, can straighten the septum, the internal structure which separates the nostrils, in a procedure known as a septorhinoplasty.

  1. Abdominoplasty or Diastasis Recti correction

The tummy is commonly seen as a problem area, and it can be challenging to improve its appearance through diet and exercise alone. An abdominoplasty is a highly effective procedure to remove excess skin and fat and produce a smoother, flatter abdomen.

It’s often not just excess skin and fat that are the problem though. Our abdominal muscles can become lax over time or as the result of weight fluctuations and can make it impossible to achieve a toned tummy.

Separation of the rectus abdominis muscles, however, affects up to 60% of women during the third trimester or immediately after childbirth and although many find they close up spontaneously afterwards, some women are left with a permanent separation in the midline. This impacts the appearance of the abdomen but can also cause lower back pain and impaired posture. Surgical correction of Diastasis Recti involves repositioning and tightening the abdominal muscles and strengthening the core.

  1. Eye Lift or medically necessary blepharoplasty

Eyelid surgery is another procedure that can be performed for both aesthetic and functional reasons. The eyes are often the first area to show ageing changes and surgery to the upper and lower lids can remove excess skin as well as improve the appearance of eye bags, often producing a dramatic facial rejuvenation.

However, a blepharoplasty may be medically necessary when excess skin on the upper lids is impeding your vision.

  1. Breast surgery

Although the boob job does have connotations of being purely cosmetic, breast surgery can address significant issues that are having a profound impact on your health and mental wellbeing.

Reducing the size of the breasts with a breast reduction procedure can produce a dramatic improvement in a patient’s quality of life. Physically, overly large breasts can cause neck and back pain and result in rashes and skin problems. It can also greatly affect a woman’s self-confidence and limit what she can wear or which activities she can enjoy. In a recent study, it was found that women who underwent breast reduction surgery before the age of 25 continued to report lasting benefits for 10 to 30 years after their procedure.

Breast augmentation with implants can address breast development problems such as macromastia, also known as breast aplasia or mammary hypoplasia, and refers to the underdevelopment of breast tissue. This is commonly a congenital defect and one or both breasts may be small.

To discuss any functional or cosmetic concerns you may have, call 020 7927 6528 to arrange a consultation with Mr Juling Ong.