Cosmetic Surgery Glossary
Abdominoplasty – Medical term for the procedure also known as a tummy tuck. A surgical procedure that removes excess skin from the abdominal area.
Anaesthetic – A pain preventing drug administered during surgery. Comes in two forms; Local Anaesthetic which only numbs the area where it has been administered and General Anaesthetic which will put the patient to sleep for the procedure.
Anatomical Implant – Implants that replicate the shape of the natural breast. They usually have more volume in the lower portion of the implant and are otherwise known as teardrop implants.
Antihelical Fold – A fold that inside the rim of the ear.
Anomaly – A feature or health problem that is not usually seen on a healthy individual.
Apronectomy – Medical term for a Mini Tummy Tuck/Abdominoplasty. A surgical procedure that removes excess skin from just the pubic area of the abdomen compared to the entire area in a full abdominoplasty.
Areola / Areola Mammae – A circular area of pigmented skin that surrounds the nipple on a female’s breast or male chest.
Areola Reduction – A surgical procedure that reduces the size of the areola.
Arm Lift – A surgical procedure where excess skin is removed from the upper arm area. Also known as a brachioplasty.
Arnica – A natural herb that is often recommend to help with swelling and bruising following surgery.
Asymmetrical/Asymmetry – When both sides are unequal.
Augmentation – A surgical procedure to enlarge a body part such as a breast augmentation.
BAAPS – British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons. An organisation dedicated to safety and education in cosmetic surgery. Plastic Surgeons who are BAAPS members will have undergone a six-year specialist training programme in an NHS teaching hospital, where they would have been regularly assessed and examined. .
BAPRAS – British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons. An democratic, member-based organisation for plastic, reconstructive and aesthetic surgeons working in the UK. The aim of BAPRAS is to further the professional specialism of plastic surgery by promoting innovation and understanding
Behind the muscle – When a breast implant is placed behind the muscle within the breast. Also known as Submuscular.
Belt Lipectomy – A surgical procedure where excess skin and fat is removed from the buttocks. Also known as a bum lift / buttocks lift / butt lift.
Bilateral – Two sides/Both sides of the body.
Blepharoplasty – A surgical procedure where excess skin is removed from the upper, lower or both areas of the eye to reduce the appearance of drooping eyelids and /or eye bags. Also known as eye bag removal or eye lid surgery.
Body Contouring – Procedures that alter the shape of the human body by removing excess skin and/or fat.
Boob Job – A slang term for a breast enlargement procedure where breast implants are used to increase breast size.
Bottoming Out – A condition where the lower section of the breast implant sits underneath the inframammary crease.
Brachioplasty – A surgical procedure where excess skin is removed to tighten the area on the upper part of the arm. Also known as an arm lift.
Breast Auto Augmentation – A specalised breast reconstruction procedure where the implant is removed from the breast and the existing breast tissue is relocated from the lower breast into the former breast pocket to create natural volume in the upper portion of the breast.
Breast Augmentation / Breast Enlargement – A surgical breast procedure where implants are inserted into the breast to change the size and shape of the breast. Also referred to as a Boob Job.
Breast Fat Transfer – A cosmetic procedure where fat is taken from one area of the body by liposuction or and then injected into the breasts to increase their size. Please note we do not offer Breast Fat Transfer procedures at The Private Clinic.
Breast Implant – A rubber silicone shell that is usually filled with silicone or sometimes saline. The implant is used in a Breast Augmentation/breast enlargement procedure to increase the size of the chest.
Breast Implant Removal – A surgical procedure where breast implants are removed from the breast.
Breast Lift – A surgical procedure performed to correct the appearance of drooping breasts. Also known as a mastopexy / breast uplift.
Breast Ptosis – Sagging of the breasts often caused by age, pregnancy or weight loss. There is a grading system for Ptsosis which you can find out more about here.
Breast Reconstruction – A surgical procedure where a range of techniques are used to restore the natural shape of a patients breasts usually following a mastectomy or breast deformity correction.
Breast Reduction – A surgical procedure that reduces the size of a patients breasts. Also known as a reduction mammoplasty.
Brow Lift – A surgical procedure to lift a drooping or lower positioned brow. It can also smooth out any fine lines in the forehead and between the eyes.
Bum Lift / Buttock Lift / Butt Lift – A surgical procedure to lift and improve the shape of the patient’s bottom.
Buttock Augmentation – A surgical procedure that places implants inside the bottom to make it appear more rounded. This procedure is not carried out by The Private Clinic.
Buttocks Fat Transfer – A cosmetic procedure where fat is taken from the body via liposuction and then injected back into the patient’s buttocks/bum to increase the size/shape. This procedure is not carried out by The Private Clinic.
Cannula – A hollow stainless steel tube that is used to remove fat deposits from beneath the skin during liposuction, micro liposuction and vaser lipsuction.
Capsular Contracture – A complication that can arise after a breast augmentation. It is when scar tissue forms tightly around the implant because of the patients’ immune system. This scar tissue can cause the implant to become distorted in shape or hard.
Capsule – The tissue that sits around the breast implant.
Capsulectomy – A surgical procedure performed to remove the capsular contracture scar tissue that has formed around the implant.
Cheek Augmentation – A surgical procedure where implants are inserted into the cheeks of a patients face. Also known as a Mallar Augmentation. This procedure is not performed at The Private Clinic.
Cleavage – The narrow hollow space between a females breasts.
Columella – The area of skin and cartilage that sits between the nostrils.
Conchal cartilage – The cartilage that sits in the deepest curve on the external area of the ear.
Congenital/Congenital Anomaly– Means present from birth.
Consultation – A meeting with a surgeon nurse or doctor to find out more about a cosmetic procedure. These consultations often require a paid for fee or a refundable deposit. Free consultations are available with a patient advisor.
Cosmetic Surgery – A specialist type of surgical procedures that aim to alter, restore or reconstruct certain areas of the body enhancing the patients appearance.
Craniofacial – Medical term relating to the bones of the the head (skull) and face.
Crisalix – A 3D plastic surgery simulator that allows patients to see estimated versions of their results before having surgery.
Cyst – A fluid filled lump underneath the skin.
Deep Vein Thrombosis / DVT – The formulation of a blood clot within a deep vein. You can be at risk of DVT particularly after an operation when you are not moving about as much as you would normally. We provide aftercare advice to all our patients to help reduce the risks.
Deviated Septum – When the middle portion of the nose (septum) is not positioned correctly causing breathing difficulties.
Donor Site – The area of your body where fat, muscle or even skin is taken from to reconstruct another area of your body.
Dual Plane – A breast augmentation technique where the top part of the breast implant is placed partially under the muscle with the rest of the implant sitting under the glandular tissue instead.
Ear Axis – The line of ear growth.
Ear Surgery – A surgical procedure to alter the position or shape of the ear. Also known as Otoplasty, Pinnaplasty, pinning back ears or ear pinning.
Elastin – An elastic protein that gives structure to the skin allowing it to retain its original shape when stretched or contracted.
Excision – The surgical removal of something.
External Incisions – Surgical cuts / incisions made on the surface of the skin.
Explantation – A surgical procedure where breast implants are removed. Also known as Breast Implant Removal.
Face Fat Transfer – A cosmetic procedure where fat is taken from one area of the body and injecting it back into areas of the face that have lost volume. Also known as an Organic Facelift or non surgical facelift.
Fat Injections –When human fat is taken from areas of the body and then injected into another area.
Fat Transfer – When fat is removed from one area of the body and relocated to another area of the body.
Flap Techniques – Surgical techniques used in plastic and reconstructive surgery where tissue is taken from one area of the body (donor site) and moved to another area of the body (recipient site) with an intact blood supply.
Fluffing – A process that occurs after breast implants have been inserted. It is when the skin and muscles surrounding the implant have relaxed during healing and the position of the implant may drop slightly. Also known as dropping.
FRCS (Plast) – Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS). A professional qualification given to surgeons who have had specialist training in plastic surgery.
General Anesthesia – A medication used to put a patient to sleep so a surgical procedure can be carried out without them feeling any discomfort or pain.
GMC – General Medical Council. A register of all the doctors who practice medicine in the UK. All surgeons within The Private Clinic are members of GMC and GMC numbers can be provided when requested.
Grafting – When skin tissue is taken from one part of the body and moved to another area.
Gynecomastia / Moobs / Man Boobs – An enlargement of the male breast gland caused by a hormonal imbalance.
Hand Fat Transfer – A cosmetic procedure when fat is taken from one area of the body and transferred into the back of the hands via a tiny cannula under local anaesthetic.
Hematoma – A collection of blood outside of the blood vessels usually caused by an injury or as a complication from a surgical procedure.
Hyperpigmented Scar – A scar that is darker in colour.
Hypertropic Scar – A scar that is slightly raised and often red in colour.
Hypopigmented Scar – A scar that is lighter in colour.
Implant – An object that is inserted into the body. Usually referring a breast implant.
Implant Exchange – A surgical procedure when breast implants are removed and replaced with new breast implants.
Incision – A surgical cut of the skin and / or flesh.
Inframmaory Fold – The natural crease that sits underneath the breast.
Inframammory Incision – An incision that is made within the inframammary fold of the breast.
Intravenous Sedation / IV Sedation – A sedative that is administered into your blood system to allow you to relax during a procedure that doesn’t require a general anaesthetic.
Inverted Nipple – Nipples that point inwards. There are 3 different grades of inverted nipples including nipples which retract or go in occasionally, to those that are permanently in all the time.
Inverted Nipple Surgery – A surgical procedure where cuts are made underneath your nipple freeing it from the surrounding tissue.
Keller Funnel – A surgical tool that allows a breast implant to be inserted without the surgeon having to touch it. This eliminates the risk of bacteria and capsular contractions.
Keloids / Keloid Scar – A scar that has a growth of collagen tissue resulting in a raised appearance that can often grow out beyond the original scar.
Labiaplasty – A surgical procedure that reduces the size of the inner lips of the vagina (Labia minora) to correct its appearance.
Laser-assisted Liposuction – A procedure where fat is removed from the body using a lasers which melts the fat.
Lesion – An area of abnormal tissue growth or appearance on the skin.
Lipofilling – A procedure where fat is transferred from one area of the body to the other usually to help fill areas that have lost fat due to ageing or weight loss.
Lipoma – Soft fatty lumps that grows underneath your skin.
Lipoplasty / Liposuction – A surgical procedure also known as liposuction where excess fat is removed from the body using a suction tool.
Lymphedema / Lymphoedema – A long-term condition where blocked lymph vessels can cause localized fluid retention and swelling in any area of the body.
Local Anaesthesia – Medication that is administered to a specific area to make it numb.
Lower Body Lift – A combination of surgical procedures that correct sagging of the abdomen, buttocks, groin, and outer thighs.
Macrotia – An condition that causes the ears to be excessively large.
MACS Facelift / Minimal Access Cranial Suspension Facelift– A surgical facelift procedure technique where the tissues and muscles are lifted via small incisions on the temple.
Male Chest Reduction – A procedure where the excess fat of a male’s chest is removed either by vaser liposuction, traditional liposuction or surgical removal to reduce the appearance of gynecomastia / moobs also known as man boob reduction or male breast reduction.
Mammaplasty – Medical term for any reconstructive or cosmetic surgical procedure that alters the size or shape of the breast.
Mammogram – An x-ray image of the breast.
Mammary Gland – The tissue that is within the breast that sits in front of the implant. The mammary gland is responsible for the production of milk.
Mastectomy – A surgical procedure that removes the entire breast. Usually performed to remove breast cancer or reduce the risk of breast cancer occuring.
Mastopexy – A medical term for a surgical breast lift or breast uplift procedure.
Medial Thigh Lift – A surgical procedure that removes tissue from the inner thigh to reduce sagging.
Melanoma – A form of skin cancer that presents itself as a dark brown//black patch of skin similar to the appearance of a mole.
MicroLipo – A form of liposuction surgery that uses microcannulas to remove unwanted fat from small areas of the body.
Mole – A common growth on the skin that is usually brown in colour.
Mole Removal – A surgical procedure where a mole on the surface of the skin is removed.
Mummy Makeover / Mommy Makeover – A combination of surgical procedures usually targeting the abdomen and breast areas that are performed at the same time to correct the effects that pregnancy has had on the body. Procedures include tummy tuck, breast enlargement and / or lift and liposuction.
MRI / Magnetic Resonance Imaging – A scan that is able to show images of the organs in the body through the use of strong magnetic fields and radio waves.
Neck Lift – A slang term for a Platysmaplasty procedure where excess sagging skin from the neck area and jaw line is removed to create a smoother and more lifted appearance.
Nipple – A small area of pigmented skin which protrudes from the female breast or male chest.
Nipple Reduction Surgery – A surgical procedure that reduces the size of nipple correcting the appearance of nipples that are droopy or enlarged.
Nose Job – A slang term for a surgical procedure that reshapes the nose. Also known as a rhinoplasty or nose reshaping surgery.
Oculoplastics / Oculoplastic Surgery – A term used to describe surgical procedures that are performed on the eye socket, eyelid, tear ducts and face.
Organic Facelift – A facelift that uses your body’s own organic fat tissue to lift and restore areas of the face.
Otoplasty / Pinnaplasty – A surgical procedure to correct the appearance of misshapen ears.
Periareola Incision – An incision that is made around the circumference of the areola.
Pinning Back the Ears – A slang term used to describe an Otoplasty or Pinnaplasty where protruding ears are reshaped to sit back against the side of the head.
Plastic Surgeon – A surgeon who specialises in cosmetic surgery that is performed to enhance the appearance of the patient.
Plastic Surgery – A specialist area of surgery where procedures are performed to restore, reconstruct, or alter the body.
Platysmaplasty – A surgical procedure for reducing the appearance of sagging skin in the neck and lower jaw. Also known as a neck lift.
Ptosis – A medical term for when the upper eyelid droops. Ptosis can also be used to describe sagging of the breast but this is known as ‘Breast Ptosis’.
Poland’s Syndrome – A rare congenital condition where the chest muscle is underdeveloped on one side of the body.
Pole – The upper or lower half of the breast implant
Post-Op / Post Operatively – The term used for when the patient has had their cosmetic procedure and is recovering.
Post-Operative Care – The care that you receive after a surgical procedure. We offer as many post-operative care and appointments with your surgeon and nursing team as required.
Reconstructive Plastic Surgery – A term used for cosmetic surgery procedures that are performed to restore areas of the body that have been affected by disease, trauma or birth defects.
Reduction Mammoplasty – A surgical procedure where tissue and fat are removed from the breasts to reduce their size.
Rhinoplasty – A surgical procedure where the nose is reshaped. Also referred to as a nose job or nose reshaping surgery.
Rhytidectomy – A surgical procedure that pulls back the skin of the mid-face, neck and jowls to make the face appear tighter with reduced sagging. Also known as a facelift.
Saline Implants – Breast implants that are filled with saline which is a salt water solution.
Scar – A mark on the skin that is left after injury or from surgical incisions.
Scar Revision – A procedure performed to improve the appearance of a poorly healed scar.
Septoplasty – A surgical procedure that straightens the middle portion of the nose (septum). In this procedure the overall appearance of the nose should remain the same.
Septorhinoplasty – A surgical procedure that straightens the middle portion of the nose (septum) to help improve airflow but also works to correct the outer shape of the nose. In this procedure the appearance of the nose will be changed.
Septum – The middle portion of the nose.
Seroma – A pocket of clear fluid that can appear in the body after a surgical procedure where tissue has been removed.
Silicone Implants – Breast implants that are filled with an elastic gel solution called silicone.
Sizer / Expander implant – A temporary implant that is placed into the breast to firstly stretch the tissue within the breast but is also used to determine which implant size fits best in the breast when the patient is undecided.
Skin Graft – A procedure where healthy skin tissue is taken from one area of the body and relocated to a wound site.
Skin Tags – A small skin coloured growth that hangs off the surface of the skin.
Split Ear Repair – A surgical procedure that repairs earlobes that have been torn due to accidental tearing when wearing earrings.
Stretch Marks – Lines or narrow streaks that appear on the surface of the skin where it has often been stretched too quickly. Usually a result of pregnancy, puberty or weight gain.
Subcutaneous – Procedures that are carried out beneath the skin.
Subglandular – When a breast implant is inserted over the pectoralis major muscle within the breast.
Submuscular – When a breast implant is placed beneath the pectoralis major muscle within the breast.
Sutures / Stitches – Stitches used by surgeons to close surgical incisions. Sutures can be absorbable or non-absorbable.
Symmastia – A rare condition where breasts come together at the centre of the chest and the skin merges together. It is usually present at birth, but can sometime occur after breast surgery which is known as ‘iatrogenic symmastia’.
Teardrop Implant – An implant that is fuller at the bottom compared to the upper potion giving it an appearance similar to a teardrop. Also known as an anatomical implant.
Thigh Lift / Thighplasty – A surgical procedure where excess fat, tissue is removed to help tone and refine the upper leg.
Traditional Liposuction – A surgical procedure that removes excessive fat from the specific regions of the body. Liposuction is performed under general anaesthetic and is ideal for targeting larger areas.
Transaxillary Incision – An incision that is made in the arm pit to insert a breast implant.
Transumbilical Breast Augmentation (TUBA) – A breast augmentation technique where the breast implants are inserted via an incision around the belly button.
Tribal Earlobe Repair – A surgical procedure that restores the earlobe back to its former appearance after they have been deliberately stretched (tribal ears / ear stretching).
Tuberous Breasts / Tubular Breasts – An abnormality of the breast that causes a constricting ring to grow around the base of the breast which stops the breast from expanding. Common signs of tuberous breasts are large puffy areolas, narrow base, minimal breast tissue, sagging and a high breast crease.
Tummy Tuck – A slang term used for the abdominoplasty procedure where excess skin is removed from the abdomen area.
Uneven Breasts – When one breast is bigger or smaller than the other. Also known as asymmetric breasts.
Umbilicoplasty / Belly Button Surgery – A surgical procedure where the shape, size and/or position of the belly button changed.
Under the muscle – When the breast implant is placed over the muscle within the breast. Also known as Subglandular.
Unilateral – One side.
Vaser Hi-Def – A liposuction body contouring treatment to sculpt and define muscles for an elite athlete definition result.
Vaser Mid Definition – A liposuction body contouring treatment that is not as extreme as the Vaser Hi-Def technique but still achieves slight definition but an overall softer result.
Vaser Liposuction – A liposuction method that targets small, stubborn pockets of fat. Vaser liposuction can be carried out under local anaesthetic and involves a small probe that emits sound energy to dissolve fat cells, which is then removed through a suction process.