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These days, there are many options available to anyone who wants to enhance their appearance through plastic surgery. All plastic surgery procedures fall into two general categories: invasive and noninvasive. At Northeastern Plastic Surgery, we wanted to explain the difference between invasive and noninvasive plastic surgery, and outline the pros and cons of each to help you determine your best route.

What is Invasive Surgery?

Invasive surgery is any procedure that breaks the skin, usually with an incision. Another way to think about it is, if the procedure leaves a scar, then it’s invasive surgery. Northeastern Plastic Surgery offers several invasive procedures including:

Invasive procedures typically offer longer-lasting and more noticeable results than noninvasive alternatives. However, these surgeries also involve local or general anesthesia, plus extended recovery periods during which time you may experience pain, swelling, and bruising. And, there will be some scarring, although we do use techniques to minimize and hide scarring as much as possible.

What is Noninvasive Surgery?

Noninvasive surgery is defined as any surgical procedure that does not require an incision or cutting of the skin. Our noninvasive procedures include:

Noninvasive procedures have become increasingly popular in recent years for many reasons. Most obviously, these procedures don’t leave a scar. Also, they don’t usually require general anesthesia, but a local anesthesia may be used. Plus, there’s typically less recovery time with noninvasive procedures. All of this makes noninvasive procedures more convenient than invasive procedures and are good options for individuals with health issues who may not be suitable candidates for surgery.

Before undergoing a noninvasive procedure, however, there are some things you should consider. For a noninvasive procedure to be effective, it needs to alter the body in some way. So, even though surgery is not technically involved, the body is still affected. For example, Botox temporarily paralyzes muscles. Chemical peels and lasers damage skin cells to stimulate the growth of new skin. And some procedures use lasers or freezing temperatures to destroy fat cells. So while these procedures are technically noninvasive, they do damage or alter the body in some way. That means you can still experience swelling, redness, bruising, and pain.

In addition, noninvasive procedures may be offered by any medical practitioner, not necessarily a board-certified plastic surgeon. That means, the results you get tend to be determined more by the effectiveness of the noninvasive device or drug, rather than the experience, technique, and training of the provider.

Finally, you should know that obtaining optimal results from non-invasive techniques may require repeated treatments over time. In the long run, the non-invasive procedure may be more expensive and require more downtime than a surgical option.

A Third Category: Minimally Invasive Surgery

There is a third category of surgery known as minimally invasive surgery. This generally refers to procedures that require only small incisions to be made in the skin. The benefit is that minimally invasive procedures require shorter recovery time, less scarring, and fewer risks overall when compared to traditionally invasive surgery. A good example of minimally invasive surgery is liposuction, which requires only small incisions to enable the surgeon to perform the procedure successfully.

Knowing the difference between invasive and noninvasive plastic surgery is the first step in determining what type of procedure is right for you. The next step is scheduling a consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon like Dr. Fodero who can provide expert guidance on which procedures will provide you with the best results in the safest way possible.

Northeastern Plastic Surgery understands your desire for a beautiful, youthful looking body and facial appearance. We use the latest plastic surgery techniques to perform a variety of surgical procedures. Dr. Fodero and the staff are very friendly, helpful, and available to answer any questions you may have. Please contact us today to learn more about the services we offer.

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