How Alcohol Affects Plastic Surgery Results

A drink every now and then may be just what you need to unwind, yet not every occasion calls for alcohol. That’s particularly true of plastic surgery procedures. Alcohol can have so many negative effects on your body that it puts your surgical recovery at risk. That’s why the board-certified cosmetic plastic surgeons at our Philadelphia, PA center tell patients to abstain from alcohol for the best outcomes.

The team at Jefferson Plastic Surgery would like to discuss the negative effects of alcohol consumption on patients. We’ll then offer some advice to ensure the best possible post-surgical results for the long run.

Negative Effects of Alcohol During Surgical Recovery

One of the key reasons we tell patients to avoid alcohol is because of its dangerous effects on the healing process. Alcohol consumption has been linked to the following issues in surgery patients:

  • Increased Swelling - Drinking alcohol widens blood vessels, which tends to cause more serious swelling. Excessive swelling after surgery could lead to major complications.
  • Excessive Bleeding - Alcohol thins the blood, which can make coagulation after surgery more difficult. This could lead to excessive bleeding after surgery.
  • Worse Discomfort - Rather than helping you manage pain, alcohol winds up making people more uncomfortable. Pain medications can also have negative side effects when mixed with alcohol.
  • Dehydration - Hydration is essential when healing from surgery. Alcohol causes dehydration, which can have a negative effect on healing.
  • Serious Fatigue - On top of all this, alcohol consumption can leave you feeling groggier and more exhausted than you normally would be after surgery.

Patients Should Avoid Alcohol Before Surgery and While Healing

In order to avoid all of the issues above, it’s important that patients avoid alcoholic beverages before surgery and as they are recovering. Ideally, stop having alcohol a few weeks before surgery so your body is prepared for the procedure and ready to heal.

When Can I Start Having a Drink Again?

That depends.

Patients can usually resume having alcoholic beverages a few weeks after surgery, though the nature of the surgery could affect this. More extensive body contouring surgeries will usually require longer healing times. That means that patients who undergo a total body lift will have to wait longer for their first drink compared to cosmetic eyelid surgery patients.

Be sure to attend all follow-up visits with your plastic surgeon. They can monitor your progress and let you know when you can resume various activities.

Practice Moderation Moving Forward for Lasting Benefits

Remember that alcohol has negative effects on your general health and appearance. Drinking, especially in excess, has been known to cause premature aging, including wrinkles, lines, red cheeks, dry skin, and puffiness of the face.

To make sure the benefits of your surgery last as long as possible, be sure to drink in moderation moving forward. Avoid excess and continue to lead a healthy lifestyle.

Learn More About Plastic Surgery

If you would like to learn more about cosmetic surgery and how it can help you, be sure to contact our skilled team of plastic surgeons. Dr. Steven E. Copit, Dr. Patrick J. Greaney, Jr., and Dr. Matthew P. Jenkins all look forward to your visit and discussing your aesthetic goals.

Questions? Email us today.

To make or reschedule an appointment please complete the form below or call:  (215) 625-6630.

CALL US TODAY: (215)625-6630


Jefferson Plastic Surgery is located on the corner of 9th and Walnut streets in Center City, Philadelphia on the 15th floor of the Wills Eye Hospital Building.

Jefferson Plastic Surgery
840 Walnut Street - 15th Floor
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107
Phone: (215) 625-6630
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Out of town patients can take our simple 4 step online consultation. To make or reschedule an appointment please call:  (215) 625-6630.

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