Did you know plastic surgery originated in India? Sushruta, the father of plastic surgery, is known to have reconstructed noses, and the method is termed as the Indian Rhinoplasty. He also performed several other procedures, which doctors practise even today.
Since the field is so vast, plastic surgeons feel that the scope is not known to the public. The surgeons deal with all problems from head to toe in all age groups.
Reconstructive surgery is the most-common kind in India. Microsurgery, a technique is the marvel of modern surgery, has enabled the plastic surgeon to become a pioneer in the field of organ transplant With help from microsurgery, plastic surgeons have mastered the art of joining blood vessels as small as 1 mm in diameter. This skill has enabled doctors to reattach amputated fingers and hands, and transfer tissues to missing areas. Due to this procedure, many limbs which would have otherwise been amputated were restored.
Hand transplantation is one such life-changing surgery, which has given hope to several upper limb amputees, who have been living a dependent and compromised life. In addition, microsurgery also brings hope for several children with birth defects and deformities (patients with lymphoedema and filariasis, facial palsy, brachial plexus and peripheral nerve injuries).
Problem Area: Foot Ulcers In Diabetics
Diabetes has been an increasing problem in India. One of the complications of diabetes is foot ulcers. Around 25 per cent of diabetics in their lifetime get a foot ulcer. Around 50 per cent of those ulcers end up in complications and the other 20 per cent in amputation. The feet loose sensation and fails to identify it, causing deformities. Deformities change the biomechanics of weight bearing. Plastic surgery can correct the altered biomechanics to prevent the recurrence of foot ulcers which might lead to amputation.
Acute and chronic wounds need timely attention to prevent from getting complicated. Improper wound management can result in an amputation of the limb. People with diabetes mellitus particularly have to be very cautious with the feet problems. The formation of a callosity or an ulcer needs urgent attention by a plastic surgeon to prevent it from progressing. These patients do follow up regularly for wound care and wound management.
In aesthetic surgery, the surgeon makes the normal even better. With the rising financial stability of the middle class, the demand for aesthetic surgery is becoming higher in our country.
The work-from-home culture has turned out to be a boon for many. People are now preferring to get their surgeries done and work from home without having to step out and go to work during the recovery period.
The Covid Impact
The pandemic has had a large impact on all medical specialties.
Reconstructive surgery for cancer continued throughout the pandemic, as delay in cancer treatment can be life threatening. However, there was a steep fall in the number of elective surgeries. Cosmetic surgery was affected to the maximum extent, as most of these procedures came under non-emergency.
The number of road or industrial accidents significantly reduced due to the lockdown. However, the kitchen accidents and injuries inccured from domestic violence showed a rise. Some Covid patients showed rare symptoms such as thrombosis (clotting) of major blood vessels of the upper or lower limbs. These patients needed plastic surgery care in order to save their limbs. But, the covid infection lead to several cases of upper or lower amputation.
The number of plastic surgeries are picking up slowly and steadily. Getting immunised against Covid also has boosted the confidence of many. The fear to visit the hospital has reduced.
As the fear of the second wave decreases, people are coming forward to get elective as well as cosmetic procedures done.
The lack of exercise or inability to follow a healthy routine due to the pandemic has also been a major trigger for most. Many people with body image issues are likely to come forward for surgical solutions.