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The Dangers of Mixing Supplements and Plastic Surgery

A recent study shows that nearly 50 percent of patients who are undergoing facial plastic surgery are taking some form of herbal remedy or other nutritional supplement. With other types of surgery, this percentage is even higher. Mixing supplements and surgery can be dangerous especially since patients don’t always disclose this information to their doctor thinking it doesn’t matter.

Older patients and women tend to be the most common users of supplements, and coincidentally are also the most common facial plastic surgery patients. And although plastic surgery is typically performed for cosmetic reasons, it is still surgery. Even minimally invasive facial procedures that don’t require the use of anesthesia may put the patient at risk if the patient is using supplements. It is best advised to avoid the use of herbal remedies and supplements for a certain time frame prior to your surgery.

The Risks Involved

It is important to disclose all medications you are currently taking with Dr. Pinsky prior to any type of surgery, not just prescription medications. Herbal remedies and other supplements are often believed to be safer, more natural, and pose no risk. However, all over-the-counter medications can carry the risk of side effects.
The biggest danger involved with mixing supplements and surgery is excessive bleeding. Other risks that may interfere with your surgery include high blood pressure, an irregular heartbeat, an adverse reaction to the anesthesia, and post-surgical healing.

Herbal Remedies and Supplements to Avoid

Some herbs to avoid at least two weeks prior to surgery include:

• Weight loss remedies
• Vitamin E
• Flaxseed
• Garlic
• Valerian
• Ginger
• Fish oil

These are just a few of the supplements and herbs to avoid for surgery. Speak Dr. Pinsky to determine which other herbs and supplements should be avoided prior to your procedure.