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4 Most life-changing surgeries

04:36 01 March in Surgery

Cosmetic surgery is not just about vanity. Some procedures, especially if performed correctly, can lead to truly positive life-changing results. Here are the top four surgeries with the highest satisfaction rating.



Imagine literally getting a weight off your chest… and your shoulders… and your back. This is possible with a breast reduction. It can improve your posture, your back and neck pain, your headaches and that awful “bra-strap grooving” on your shoulders. The irritated skin under your breasts could be a thing of the past. It can increase your capacity to exercise and improve the overall symmetry and balance of your figure. Clothes could now fit you “off the hanger”. You could participate in a Zumba class or swim in the ocean without feeling self-conscious. You’ll notice that people start talking to your eyes instead of your cleavage. Best of all? You won’t be hearing “Goodness! You’ve had a breast reduction!”, but rather “Wow! You look amazing! Have you lost weight?”



It’s a misconception that an abdominoplasty is an “easy way out” for people too lazy or ill-disciplined to lose weight. Rather it is a reconstructive operation to repair the ravages of pregnancy and childbirth, the scarring and muscle-wall weakness resulting from gynaecological or abdominal surgery, and in some instances to re-structure and re-contour the mid-section FOLLOWING successful weight loss. In essence, it deals with all the tummy-woes that CAN NOT be improved by an optimal diet and lifestyle.

If you still look six months pregnant even though your youngest child is now in high school, this might be the perfect procedure for you. Unfortunately, once your abdominal muscles are stretched or mal-positioned, NO amount of effort or level of fitness can put them back where they are supposed to be. This imbalance between the pull of the tummy muscles and the back muscles is often the reason for chronic backache and poor posture. The “apron” of skin that hangs over your caesarean scar will NEVER go away – regardless of how fit or skinny you may get. Neither will the stretch marks. Surgical excision of the stretched skin and scar is the only answer.

An abdominoplasty is the only thing that will restore your core strength and make your muscles work in harmony again, as they did when you were a teenager. Your posture will improve, your ability to exercise will improve, you won’t have to wear clothing to hide the bulge. You might even consider wearing that bikini again because the ugly stretch marks and the “pouch” will now be gone. And you’ll have a waist again!



“Goodness, you look tired! Are you not sleeping well?” “Have you been crying?” “Do you have allergies or a cold?” If you hear this often enough, you’ll start to wonder if you are in fact ill, depressed or suffering from the high pollen count. However, if it’s due to excess or sagging fat or skin around your eyes or deep grooves, you should consider a blepharoplasty to restore a youthful, fresh and vibrant look to your entire face.

It’s the most powerful operation you will never see because the scarring is almost completely hidden and healing is universally seamless. It doesn’t change the character of your eyes. Rather it reveals their nuances. I liken it to putting a beautiful artwork in a better frame. It makes the whole painting come to life. Blepharoplasty can be done alone or combined with a facelift, a browlift or both – whatever your case requires. By combining these procedures you can further optimise the rejuvenation achieved and the balance of the result.



Having prominent ears could lead to years of ridicule and end up in psycho-social damage that is often only revealed in middle age when the person confronts his insecurities and realise that being called “Dumbo” has coloured every element of his existence. This can all be avoided by correcting prominent ears at an early age: girls from 6 years and boys from 7 years. Fortunately – in my practice at least – the days of  “plastered flat” ears following surgery are over. An ear that is now conspicuous because it looks “operated” is a mistake. The post-operative ear should look normal in every respect.


Jonathan Toogood