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For many plastic surgery procedures from facial reshaping to breast augmentation, it is often a numbers game. Sizes and dimensional measurements are a key part of numerous face and body procedures, particularly those that involve the use of an implant in particular. But even in those operations that do not involve an implant, measurements are often taken and drawings done on photographs or the patient themselves before surgery. All of this implies a certain predictability of the procedure.

The use of computer imaging magnifies the perception of predictability as it shows results of what may happen. The name predictive imaging signifies that there may be some certainty to the future result. Even though computer imaging is really meant to be a communication tool to determine the patient’s goals, the imagery that it creates naturally elevates a patient’s expectations.

For some patients, it is understood that the outcome of surgery is not like Photoshop and the results obtained are influenced by numerous factors not all in the plastic surgeon’s control. But other patients approach plastic surgery in a precise analytical manner and will focus on subtle nuances of alteration that may come down to a few millimeters.

What is important for any patient considering plastic surgery is that results are not always predictive. The body does not react to surgery like a mathematical model, engineering drawing or an architectural design. While it is important to have a pre-surgical plan, the living dynamics of the human body and its reaction to surgical trauma and healing often defies absolute measured predictability.’

Or to put it more simply…

‘Plastic Surgery Is Still As Much An Art Form As A Perfected Science For Many Problems’

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana

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