A Multidisciplinary Approach and Review of Safety Recommendations for Plastic Surgeons During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Are N95 Masks Enough?

Scharukh Jalisi, M.D., M.A.; Austin D. Chen, M.D.; Ernest Gomez, M.D.; Radhika Chigurupati, D.M.D.; Ryan Cauley, M.D., M.P.H.; Suzanne Olbricht, M.D.; Bernard T. Lee, M.D., M.B.A., M.P.H.; Samuel J. Lin, M.D., M.B.A.


Plast Reconstr Surg. 2021;148(2):467-474. 

In This Article

Cosmetic Surgery

Although elective cosmetic surgery constitutes a nonessential service, patients may still call the office for the possibility of office-based surgery or procedures. Although it is at the discretion of the practitioner, during times of a pandemic—especially when a vector is transmitted by asymptomatic carriers—it is recommended to defer not only cosmetic operative procedures but also cosmetic medicine (i.e., fillers, dermabrasion, laser treatments). These recommendations do not include situations that demand more immediate evaluation or treatment—in particular, the care of perioperative patients from recent procedures requiring procedures such as hematoma evacuation, incision and drainage of infections, acute management of implant exposure, or wound dehiscence. Noninvasive procedures such as CoolSculpting (Zeltiq Aesthetics, a division of Allergan plc, Pleasanton, Calif.) should be deferred also at this time. Specifically, the treatment of epistaxis following rhinoplasty in the office is best treated by the operating physician rather than in the emergency room during the time of a pandemic secondary to the amount of potential exposure to the patient or health care provider in a general emergency room setting. Epistaxis treatment follows the same guidelines as outlined in this article for high-risk aerodigestive tract precautions. Although the explantation of an implant is readily performed in the office, the placement of a sterile implant (e.g., breast implant) in the office is to be very carefully weighed, as various "office" conditions may not have the same sterility rigor as those treated in the operating room.