I am a heart patient with an extensive history. Would this history make it impossible to find a doctor to give me a facelift?
Heart Condition and Facial Plastic Surgery
Doctor Answers (11)
This is very difficult to answer without a detailed history
Generally for our cosmetic patients seeking purely elective surgery, there is no reason to take unnecessary risks with surgery. This does not mean that a person with say a history of coronary heart disease can't have a facelift but no surgeon would consider this if the coronary heart disease was untreated. Occasionally appartently health adults present themselves for cosmetic surgery. It is our job as surgeons to determine if our patient is able to safely have cosmetic surgery. This may involve a careful assessment by a cardiologist. However, the testing and treatment that is need is what would be recommended whether or not you are having surgery by an large. However, there are individuals with certain types of heart disease who are as well managed as possible and they still present unacceptable risk for purely elective surgery.
Your picture also does show that you have profound upper eyelid ptosis which will be benefited by surgery. Your first step might be to talk with your primary care physician to learn if you are physically able to have cosmetic surgery. Your physician may also be able to help you identify a highly qualified surgeon.
Facelift for heart patient
Being Healthy and Having a Facelift
If you have any significant medical history or health history, you must have clearance obviously before having any elective or aesthetic cosmetic surgery. It would behoove you to get medical clearance before considering having any type of elective cosmetic surgery. Sometimes you may have medical problems, such as previous cardiac surgery or other major health issues that are now stable. In those types of cases, I do those patients in a hospital setting so they can be monitored more closely post operatively.
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Plastic surgery and patients with heart conditions
Prior to undergoing a facelift you should be cleared by your cardiologist for any issues related to a facelift. The facelift operation is both physically and emotionally stressful and it is important to establish that you are in good physical health. Your cardiology records and a letter of clearance from your cardiologist would be in order prior to embarking on a facelift procedure.
Does my heart condition preclude me from having a facelift?
It doesn't matter how good the procedure might make you look if it is fundamentally not safe for you to have it done... You seem to understand this, so how to maximize your chances of coming through it safely?
I would recommend you visit with both your cardiologist (and/or heart surgeon), and your family doctor. Make sure that when you do, you have already chosen a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and learned the details of the operation you wish to proceed with, such as the length of the surgery, who will be doing the anesthesia and where (the facility), as well as the average blood loss for that surgeon with that operation. Share this information with your heart doctors and family doctor and ask them if they think you are a reasonable candidate for the procedure. They will also speak with your plastic surgeon if questions arise in their minds- and this is to your benefit.
It may be that they say it would be possible under certain circumstances, or it may be that they say under no circumstances would they allow you to proceed. In either case, this is the best way to understand your level of risk, and to be proactive about minimizing any risk that exists.
How to find a good plastic surgeon? Read this:
Heart conditions and plastic surgery
You will be the younger appearing individual but will you survive the surgery is the real question. Without a complete pre operative cardiac evaluation there is no reason to consider this elective surgery. The consensus of us, posters is 100%+.
Medical clearance for cosmetic surgery
Certainly your health and safety should be primary to any of your medical doctors. Any surgery would require an examination and medical clearance by your physician and any other specialist that is necessary to assess your risk. Having said that, there could possibly be any number of surgical and non-surgical procedures that could be safely undertaken that might be beneficial to you. Some might be able to be performed under local anesthesia. This would require a comprehensive and careful consultation with a reputable plastic surgeon.
Perhaps an alternative to surgery might suffice
If you cannot get medical clearance for surgery, we have alternatives now which may not give as dramatic a result but may be sufficient.
In Florida we have many older patients who wish to look better but have all sort of medical issues. In these we may combine Injectables fillers, Botox, medical pigmentation and lasers to give a result that makes them feel better about themselves and is safe. We use this approach on patients who are on heparin or have arrhythmia and many other medical issue.
Your photo is inadequate to provide any guidance.
Obtain medical clearance pior to elective surgery
I would agree with both Dr, Aldea's and Rand's statements. Your overall health is the most important consideration. Only after a thorough evaluation by your cardiologist, should you even consider the face lift procedure.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.