View random article

The History of Plastic Surgery

If you think plastic surgeons are a recent evolution of a modern science then think again. Plastic surgery has a long history that started thousands of years ago.

The early beginnings of plastic surgery started more than 4,000 years ago and it usually came in the form of correcting injuries in the facial area. In Ancient India, skin grafts were used for various reconstructive procedures done to the face. In fact, a method of rhinoplasty that involved getting skin from the forehead or cheek was kept secret for hundreds of years in India. In fact, plastic surgery was more accepted in the East at the time. The whole concept of reconstructive surgery was slow to be accepted in Europe. But medical progress di happen in ancient Rome in terms of advancements in plastic surgery. For example, Aulus Cornelius Celsus (probably one of the earliest plastic surgeons) wrote the tome De Medicina. The book describes the different surgical methods for reconstructing the lips, nose and ears – parts of the face that are usually injured during wars and battles.

The Renaissance brought with it an increased interest in plastic surgery in Europe. One of the methods discussed during this time were treatments for gynecomastia, which is seen as a precursor to the eventual development of breast reduction surgical methods.

The start of the first World War brought another renewed interest in plastic surgery as a way of addressing the horrible injuries war veterans sustained. This was a time when the plastic surgeon became a prominent medical professional even in the field of war.

After the applications of plastic surgery methods during war circumstances, the shift of plastic surgery gradually shifted towards aesthetics – modifying certain parts of the body that are not seen as pleasing and changing it so that it conforms to the patient’s standards of beauty. This is when plastic surgery truly boomed. Rhinoplasty became a staple surgical procedure for a plastic surgeon. Breast augmentation has also become a popular procedure. Even procedures that are not as invasive as those previously mentioned have become popular choices for people who want to look good – this includes the injection of botox to remove wrinkles and fine lines on the face.

Featured in Health