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Introduction

Plastic surgery is derived from the Greek term to mean “mould” or “the art of modeling malleable flesh”. Plastic surgery is a medical procedure that specializes in the reconstruction, restoration and repairing form and function of body parts. It involves the transfer of skin tissues or skin grafts from either a recipient or a donor. The many types of plastic surgeries include reconstructive surgery, cosmetic surgery, hand surgery, treatment of burns and microsurgery (Mathes and Hentz 413). However, the two main categories are the reconstructive and cosmetic surgeries. A vast majority of people are not satisfied and comfortable with their outer appearance. Some people accept the way they look while others seek to find ways to reshape or correct their faults. Reconstructive surgery is a procedure concerned with the correction of functional impairments while cosmetic surgery seeks to improve a person’s physical appearance purely in the absence of any impairments or trauma. Reconstructive surgery is considered especially important to people who have gone through traumatic experiences since it helps in restoration of a person’s appearance and self-confidence (Mathes and Hentz 413). This essay discusses the two main types of plastic surgeries mentioned above with emphasis on why reconstructive surgery is more recommendable than cosmetic surgery. The essay also discusses the pros and cons of plastic surgery and the numerous implications of these procedures. Reconstructive surgery is what is most preferable as it is like as healthy procedure aimed at making a person’s life better unlike the cosmetic procedures where a person only does it for their own selfish reasons. This is why I strongly disagree with the cosmetic surgery procedures and go for reconstructive surgery.

As earlier stated, reconstructive surgery is, a medical procedure performed to correct physical impairments. It addresses functional impairments that may be a result of the following: congenital and development abnormalities, traumatic injuries, severe burns, fractures, infections and diseases, e.g. tumors (Cannon 787).Like any other surgical procedure, reconstructive surgery requires specialized knowledge and skills. The procedures range from simple techniques, such as closing a wound and dressing, to more complex techniques, such as skin grafting, free flaps and tissue expansion. According to researches, over one million reconstructive surgeries are performed annually. There are different types of reconstructive surgeries and these include: breast reconstruction and reduction for women who undergo mastectomy especially due to cancer treatment are beneficiaries of this procedure. Women who also have abnormal large breast that may lead to problems and health risks also undergo reconstructive surgery. The other type of reconstructive surgery is wound treatment and care where patients who have severe burns and cuts receive surgery through techniques such as skin grafting. This technique helps to restore the lost skin tissues and enable the wound to heal. Hand and Feet surgery is mostly performed on persons who are affected by different disorders including tumors. It is also performed on persons who have minor abnormalities such as webbed feet or extra toes. Facial surgeries is another reconstructive surgery done to correct defections on the face such as cleft lips, breathing or chronic infections that affect the sinuses, and even snoring (Mathes and Hentz 183)

On the other hand, the growing culture of youthfulness and attractiveness, cosmetic surgery is now the most popular surgical procedure in the world. Many people are not satisfied with their appearance, and this is fueled largely by the unprecedented influence of the media and social networks. Cosmetic surgery is the process by which surgical procedures are performed to enhance appearance, restore or reshape different parts of the body with an aim of boosting one’s appearance and attractiveness (Cannon 787). The most common cosmetic surgery procedures are: Abdominoplasty, also referred to as “tummy tuck”, helps in firming and reshaping the abdomen,  blepharoplasty, a procedure done to reshape person’s eyelids, either the upper or the lower eyelids, reduction of breasts, breast augmentation and breast lift to enlarge or reshape the breasts. The other common cosmetic procedure is buttock augmentation, which is performed either to lift or to enlarge the buttocks through the insertion of implants. Others include chemical peels, face-lifts, liposucntion and rhinoplasty, (Sarwer et al. 498). The cosmetic procedures as seen by its different types are not meant to enhance the life of the person undergoing it, but it seeks to improve their appearance.

A majority of people experience very difficult physical impairments that are either birth related or traumatic experiences. Many of this people are not able to live a normal life due to their impaired disabilities. Studies show that a huge percentage of persons with functional impairment are less comfortable and confident about how they look and in many cases tend to shun away from the society due to fear of stigmatization. Reconstructive surgery has many effects on the lives of the people who get a chance to undergo them. This is unlike cosmetic surgeries where a person only seeks to enhance their appearance in order to look good and appease others. Reconstructive surgery gives the back to a person what they lost or what they did not have in the past and helps them make their lives better. This is the case for patients who are involved in tragic accidents and are left with serious injuries that may leave them with severe wounds and scars making it difficult to go back to their daily routines.

Reconstructive surgery improves a person’s self-esteem and confidence.  The society has a certain standard of how one should physically look; persons with functional impairment often face stigmatization. People may tease them on how they look, which gradually leads to withdrawal from the people and society. Through reconstructive surgery, patients are able to correct their defects and feel more confident in their appearances. This is in contrast with cosmetic surgery where an individual feels that there is something they were not well endowed with when they were born and feel that they would have appreciated if they had it. This is not in an effort to boost their esteem, but it if for the desire to look better than everyone else and stand out for people to recognize you.

Reconstructive surgery is performed for health reasons like for the removal of tumors and other cancerous cells. This procedure is difficult, as extraction of the tumors or the cancerous cells also involves rebuilding of the skin through skin grafts or flaps from other body parts. In addition, the reduction of excess breast tissues in both men and women also helps in prevention of risky health related complications. These procedures are important in saving the lives of people by making sure that cancerous cells do not spread to other parts of the body. Cosmetic surgeries on the other hand does not enhance ones health as it increases the risks of a person developing different kinds of cancers like skin cancer. This is because the skin is exposed to too much chemical and many electric signals, which are not good for the body cells.

Many children are born with birth defects due to many complications. Such common defects include lip clefs, palates, and deviated septum. However, most of these defects can be corrected at an early age and enable the child to grow without and further difficulties. T6his is the works of reconstructive birth defect surgeries aimed at helping infants lead a normal life like any other child out there, (Blum 315).

Currently, reconstructive surgery is on the rise, which is due to the rise in the new technology that enables the performance of difficult procedures. There are no major negative implications of reconstructive surgery. Although there are a few complications that may arise because of the complexity of the procedure, the effects are mostly positive. (Blum 315).

Conclusion

In the current century, the society emphasizes outer appearances rather than the inner virtues of a person. In the media and social networks, the physical features of a person are increasingly highlighted and glorified, which leads to a stampede rush for physical enhancements through surgeries. Reconstructive surgery has a pure objective of rebuilding a person’s life and giving them normalcy, (Sarwer et al. 498). Many people are now able to live comfortably without low self-esteem due to the benefits of reconstructive surgery. In contract, cosmetic surgery enhances a person’s features for the wrong ethical purposes. One should not go through surgery to look more attractive, as this is the wrong message we are passing to the next generation. Moreover, the benefits of cosmetic surgery are fake and short-lived and since one cannot permanently reverse the aging process, cosmetic surgery is purely a sham for personal gains. Therefore, people should look at the implications of cosmetic surgeries in their lives after the procedure and weigh the options. A person undergoing reconstructive surgery has not option and going through with it will help them move on with their lives like any other person. 

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