Post-Operative Pain Management After Cosmetic Surgery
Pain management is the new topic of the day in medicine and apparently in the government. Narcotic prescriptions are now tightly controlled and will be tracked so that a patient cannot jump from one provider to another. This tightening, of course, comes at a price, and the rate of heroin use has now tripled…but that’s another story.
Bottom line is, if we can avoid giving narcotics, we should. I know of two plastic surgeons that became addicted to narcotics after having routine outpatient procedures. Both of them had a family and children. Both of them lost their license to practice. Narcotic use, even for a short period of time, can ruin lives in susceptible individuals.
The Center for Disease Control has even issued new guidelines for prescribing opioids for chronic pain. The recommendation is to avoid using opioids as first line therapy.
At our center, we have developed a post-operative pain management protocol which does not include any narcotics. We have been using this protocol for the past five years, and we rarely have had to prescribe narcotics. We have used it for all types of cosmetic and reconstructive surgery (facelift, nose surgery, breast surgery, tummy tuck, liposuction, hand surgery, etc.) The patients are more comfortable, and there is no risk of addiction or constipation (a common side effect of opioids).
I urge all of you to consider not using narcotics unless absolutely indicated.
Michael A. Jazayeri, M.D. is a board-certified plastic surgeon with over 16 years of experience. His office is located in Orange County, California. To schedule a complimentary consultation, please call 714-834-0101 or fill out our online contact form.