It would take ages to recount the whole history of plastic surgery. Some date it’s birth back to ancient times, while others, consider the nineteenth century as the beginning. Regardless of the date, this story is NOT, without a thrill.
Contemporary plastic surgery is very sophisticated, however the tremendous jump in it’s development didn’t happen overnight. The search for eternal beauty and continuous improvement of nature’s ability to create is not an invention of the 21st century.
The dream to extend life beyond the one present on earth began in ancient Egypt. As early as in the times of the pharaohs, every effort was made to ensure that the body of the deceased god transferred it’s power and glory into the afterlife. Pharaohs who lost their limbs or other body parts during their lifetime have been gifted new limbs by those who swore their allegiance to the sovereign. Arms, legs, noses often made of wood, metal or other valuable materials were attached to the deceased bodies. That way pharaohs, no longer had to worry about their afterlife.
Around the first century B.C during the reign of Greeks and Romans, healers used surgical methods to change the appearance of the mortal body. Ancient scripts found by archeologists indicate that at that time, a scar removal technique was already known, and Hippocrates himself was the first to describe the technique of transferring skin patches from one place to another.
Many enthusiasts are not aware that the phrase ‘plastic surgery’, derived from the Greek ‘plastic’, which in direct translation means ‘to form’, and does not mean, as if it seemed, to create something artificial.
Almost one thousand years later in the history books we encounter the Middle Ages, also called the dark ages. During this time little is known about the development of medicine, including surgery. Many researchers pin the blame to the Catholic church, which at that time considered medicine to be godless desecration of human corpses. The church has banned interfering with the human body and forbids autopsies – an infinite source of knowledge and information.
In the 16th century, the development of medicine in Europe is attributed to an Italian doctor who managed to reconstruct the nose of one of his patients. Based on the experience of Hippocrates, by transplanting skin patches obtained from the shoulders he managed to reconstruct this vital sensory organ. This was a huge achievement not only because of the restrictions imposed by the church, but also because of the lack of any anesthetic drugs … during the dark ages all treatments had to be very painful.
The prelude of real plastic surgery is the nineteenth century. For the first time in history surgical procedures were commenced to improve the appearance and not as it was previously due to health reasons. In 1845, surgeon Johann Dieffenbach became famous for his success in nose surgery, performed solely for aesthetic purposes. In 1897, Alfred Pousson performed breast reduction surgery. However, First publications on aesthetic surgery surfaced in 1907. Aesthetic medicine began to accelerate its influence.
In 1914 First World War breaks out. Millions of soldiers killed and wounded enabled doctors to learn and to introduce new surgical techniques not only to save lives but also to improve the appearance of the body. Experiences taken from the war have been implemented into the world of show business. Well-known Hollywood stars and wealthy people began to use the services of surgeons, although they never admitted it, Marlene Dietrich, Marilyn Monroe are among the few that could afford it.
The following years brought many changes to the medical industry. New advancements in technology accelerated the development of aesthetic surgery to unprecedented heights. However, some of the changes are seen by doctors as changes in the wrong direction. Plastic and aesthetic surgery have become a very popular and affordable way to improve nature. The wide spread of media messages have pushed medicine to become a way to fight with modern day deficiencies and complexes that the media themselves propagate. Although there are still few people who speak publicly about their aesthetic enhancements, less people hide the fact that they undergo surgery.
More and more people admit that they raised droopy eyelids, or did some sort of skin lifting. Patients often visit doctors with partners or even entire families come to have a look. This is a common tendency. It has become fashionable to have something done. Its 2020 and this topic is no longer taboo.
Doctors indicate that THE HUMANITY is facing a paradigm shift. In the modern society we do not want to look average. We want to shock our audiences. By many, our faces are perceived as products listed for sale. Visual and behavioral deviations are seen as means to achieve social success. Unfortunately, in the increasingly tolerant society such instances are considered the norm.
In this short documentary we spoke about Hippocrates and his pioneering work towards the development of modern medicine. It is imperative for every doctor to remember that the oath of Hippocrates that we take is valid throughout our professional careers.
It is also important to calculate the benefits and consequences of our actions, by empowering patients to make informed decisions of their own.
Fortunately a healthcare professional can say NO when enough is enough. Following the oath of Hippocrates, in our clinic we embrace and underline the natural beauty that lies in each and every one of us.
You don’t have to go through a full range of cosmetic surgery to achieve the youthful look that we all are after. Simple non-invasive mesotherapy done from time to time is a great way to write your own story with aesthetic medicine.