What’s the difference between cosmetic and reconstructive surgery?

Cosmetic surgery is an elective procedure that re-contours a specific area of the body in order to improve its appearance and enhance the patient’s self-esteem.

Reconstructive surgery is carried out on areas of the body that have been affected by congenital defects, developmental problems, injury, infection or disease, and tumors. Whereas the main goal of reconstructive surgery is to improve the patient’s functionality of the area, this type of surgery also frequently improves appearance as well.

What is an aesthetician?

Aestheticians are often part of the staff at plastic surgery practices to perform cosmetic services such as facials, superficial chemical peels, body treatments, etc. An aesthetician isn’t a medical doctor, but a license is required in order for him or her to administer in-office treatments. In Alabama, an aesthetician receives their license after performing 1,000 clock hours or 2,000 hours under the supervision of a licensed esthetician, as well as passing their written/theory and/or practical esthetician exams.

Will my surgery be covered by insurance?

Surgeries that are wholly cosmetic — such as breast augmentation and hair transplant — are not covered by insurance. However, if the surgery you’re interested in will improve functionality, such as a septoplasty (nose surgery) or a breast reduction to improve back pain, it may be partially covered. Many reconstructive surgeries are also covered. The best thing to do is to contact your insurance company and get the information you need. Every insurance plan is different.

Are financing options available?

At Alabama Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, we offer financing through CareCredit®. Please see our Financing page to find out more.

What steps should I take to prepare for surgery?

Because every procedure is different, there will be different things to do in order to prepare yourself. During your consultation, we will give you detailed pre- and post-surgery instructions to follow that will help the entire process go as smoothly as possible. These instructions will include things like what to avoid before and after the procedure, and what you will need to have on hand immediately following surgery.

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