Vanity is perhaps part of human nature. Everybody wants to look good or presentable. No matter how modern it sounds, plastic surgery is not a new procedure. Crude cosmetic surgeries are written in ancient Indian Sanskrit that dates back up to 600 BC. Plastic surgery also become popular in ancient Rome, where Roman physicians would perform surgeries to fix and reconstruct noses, eyelids, lips and even teeth. Cosmetic surgery and other cosmetic procedures have stood the test of time to prove that vanity is timeless.
For centuries, cosmetic surgery procedures can be practiced by anyone. Plastic surgery was a crude process that includes inserting and grafting anything on the skin. Pig skin was commonly grafter into human skin during the Renaissance.
The moral stigma caused by plastic surgery may have come from the 1500’s. During this time, people with syphilis had their noses destroyed by the bacteria. Gaspare Tagliacozzi, the father of modern plastic surgery, developed a virtual nose for people with syphilis. As a result, people associate these fake noses with syphilitic people. Young women with virtual noses were deemed undesirable.
The term “plastic surgery” was first coined by Karl Ferdinand Graefe in 1818 in his book titled Rhinoplastik. His book aimed to banish the moral stigma that is associated with nose reconstruction that can be dated back to 1500’s.
The First World War and the Second World War demand an increase in plastic surgery procedures, thus advancing the processes involved. The American surgeons who have served during the First World War joined together in 1931 to form the American Association of Plastic Surgeons. They aim to stop the spread of unregulated plastic surgery procedures in the US.
Because of the injuries of soldiers and civilians during the Second World War, plastic surgery became a must to repair limbs, extensively burnt skin and deformed faces. Surgeons that time extensively researched about tissue health. On the other hand, the Nazi Germany had a different view on plastic surgery. They used it to “repair” the soldiers’ faces who were “too ugly” to represent the Nazi regime. Benito Mussolini, too, used plastic surgery to improve the performance of Italian generals. Droopy eyelids were fixed so they could see better.
Silicone injections were first used for breast augmentation (ref article) in the 60’s. Silicone injection, however, was first used in Japan to plump the legs of polio patients. Silicone breast injections are becoming less and less popular because they present a host of irreversible side effects.