Plastic Surgery Checklist

Plastic Surgery Checklist: What You Can Do To Prepare for Your Operation


Preparation is one of the crucial stages of your plastic surgery. Not only can it make you feel ready mentally, it’s also important for you to follow these essential steps to ensure the smooth recovery and healing after the procedure.

Quit smoking 4 weeks before your surgery

If you continue smoking before your plastic surgery, it can interfere with your healing process after you get your surgery done. Smoking reduces and slows down the blood flow which could in turn delay your recovery or lead to wound breakdown. After the surgery, it is also recommended that you do not resume smoking at least for the next few weeks.

Stop taking aspirin, ibuprofen and other anti-inflammatory medications, vitamins (especially Vitamin E), herbal supplements and fish oil, 2 weeks before surgery

These medications have blood-thinning properties and can have an adverse impact on your recovery. It can cause more bleeding during surgery and more bruising after surgery. Make sure to consult with your plastic surgeon on what medications you should stop prior to surgery and which ones you should continue.

Avoid alcohol a week before your surgery

Alcohol is known for causing dehydration. Keeping away from it can help you recover faster. Frequent alcohol intake can also affect you anaesthetic requirements. 

Take a good shower and wash your hair the night before

Make sure that you have a chance to take a proper shower as depending on your surgery, you may be required to stay in hospital overnight, or even for a couple of days. Use antibacterial soap to cleanse your body. It is also recommended that you wash your hair the night before the procedure. Do not apply any hair products, including hair spray, and avoid wearing make up.

Bring comfortable clothes and any entertainment (books, magazines, movies)

The first stage of post-surgery recovery may require you staying in the hospital for 1-2 days for monitoring, assistance and medications. As much as it is possible, you may need to make yourself comfortable to ensure you have adequate rest and get some good sleep. You will need to bring loose clothes in which you can rest or sleep, and communicate any dietary requirements prior or at the time of your admission. You may not be able to get the food you need on the day and some books or movies will help to keep yourself entertained.

Bring someone with you to look after you throughout this process

Plastic surgery procedures can be overwhelming physically and emotionally. While your surgeon will do everything to ensure it is as comfortable as it is possible, you will still need support. Ask your close friend, a relative or your partner to drive you to the clinic and make sure they can pick you up and drive you home.

Do not eat or drink at least 6 hours before surgery.
Only water or clear fluids (clear apple juice) is allowed up to 2 hours before surgery.

You need to have an empty stomach as  you will be administered a general anaesthetic. You must follow this step for your safety as if you have any food or drink in your stomach during anaesthesia, you could regurgitate and food may go into your lungs.


This tip applies to those who consider undergoing a rhinoplasty procedure. Before the surgery, bring a hydrating lip balm with you. Once rhinoplasty is performed, for a while you will be breathing through your mouth while your nose recovers, and in turn, it can dehydrate your lips and cause dryness. Applying a lip balm can help prevent that.

Always consult with your plastic surgeon to ensure they run you through these steps and that you have a good understanding of what you need to do. 

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