If you’re one of the thousands of people considering cosmetic surgery and currently take herbal supplements to stay in good health, you could be putting yourself at risk for adverse side effects from the surgery – and even slow down the healing process.
A recent study from the University Hospitals Case Medical Centre in Washington shows that more than 40 percent of people using herbal supplements just a few weeks before their surgery report many side effects and postoperative problems than those that don’t.
Common over-the-counter herbal supplements including ginseng, gingko biloba and garlic can have an effect on how the blood clots after the injury created during surgery, and how the heart performs during the recovery process.
Interestingly enough, as many as 70 percent of patients who take such supplements don’t even report them to the doctor during their intake session, the study says. These patients may hide the fact that they are using alternative medicine or supplements, which means the doctor has no idea about the potentially disastrous effects and outcome of the operation.
Other patients don’t disclose their supplement intake in fear that they will not be prescribed the appropriate medications post-surgery; however, many natural supplements can interfere with the effectiveness of prescription drugs, and may indeed need to be eliminated from the diet weeks, and even months, prior to and after surgery.
The biggest concern here is that people who think they are doing their body a favor by taking natural supplements and pursuing alternative medicine to manage their health may in fact be putting themselves at risk if they plan to pursue surgery.
Cosmetic and plastic surgery typically involves a significant amount of incisions, general anesthesia, and taking several post-operative medications. If the patient has been taking certain supplements that thin the blood, slow down the healing process or interfere with the cardiovascular system in any way, they may experience severe adverse effects after surgery, and may not even be able to take certain medications.
Anyone who is undergoing plastic or cosmetic surgery must tell their doctor exactly what types of natural supplements they are taking, what types of foods they are eating, and if they are taking any prescription drugs.