Plastic surgery deals with the remodeling of any portion of the body that has been damaged or deformed. The primary objectives of plastic surgery are the correction of defects, the restoration of lost function, and the improvement of appearance. Appearance plays a large role in the lives of most people, which has caused cosmetic surgery to become a popular type of plastic surgery practiced. Cosmetic surgery is a branch of plastic surgery that is designed to alter a person's looks.
Although cosmetic surgery is viewed by many as vain and shallow, it does a great deal more than deliver just a pretty face. Thousands of people who have had successful surgeries to improve their looks have reported that the changes made them happier than they had ever thought possible.
Self-esteem soars to new heights, allowing shy, self-conscious, or aging people to become more outgoing, self-confident, and youthful. The history of modern facial plastic surgery began more than one hundred years ago, when a few men independently began to explore a new surgical frontier of reconstructive and functional repairs that also improved appearance. By observing one another these surgeons rapidly improved and expanded the procedures each could perform. One surgeon in particular stands out from this time. Jacques Joseph was working as the assistant to orthopedic surgeon Professor Dr. Julius Wolff in Berlin, Germany, when he became interested in facial plastic surgery.
Joseph's first case was a young boy, who refused to attend school because he suffered such ridicule from classmates for his large, protruding ears. In 1896, the boy's mother approached Joseph for advice, asking if there might be surgical relief for her son's problem. After careful planning, Joseph operated successfully, earning him a place in history as the father of the modern subspecialty. (Simons 3-5). Reshaping of the nose, or rhinoplasty, is one of the most common of all the plastic surgery procedures.
Thousands of people every year choose this procedure to change the size or shape of their noses. Rhinoplasty can change the size of your nose, change the angle between your nose and your upper lip, change the shape of the tip or the bridge, or narrow the width of the nostrils. It may also correct birth defects or breathing problems. Teenagers are best treated after their growth spurt, around age 14-15 for girls and 15-16 for boys (Hill 7).
A major technique used in plastic surgery is grafting, the transplanting or implanting of living tissue from one part of the body to another, or from one person to another, with the expectation that the tissue will grow to supply a missing part. Several techniques of skin grafting are commonly used. One is the transfer of tissue from an adjacent part to the defect by transposition or rotation of flaps of skin. Another frequently used technique, particularly in minor facial defects, is full-thickness grafting, in which the full thickness of the skin is removed and transferred as a free transplant to the defective area (Rees 155-7). These types of skin grafting have proven to be the most effective.