Cosmetic surgery also called as Aesthetic surgery is the branch of plastic surgery that deals with enhancing looks and appearance of the face and body. The conditions that are addressed here primarily affect appearance, though some cases have functional problems as well.
There are many reasons why people seek aesthetic surgery. Some may be interested in correcting a specific aspect of their face or body that bothers them or makes them self-conscious. In extreme cases, they may even be too shy to socialize. Some may seek to restore the features that have been distorted by age, environment, pregnancy or life situations. Patients may thus range in age from the teenager to someone in her nineties. It is not necessarily the rich and famous who get these procedures done. Most of the clients are just normal people.
Cosmetic Surgeries are usually performed by plastic surgeons with special experience/interest in the aesthetic surgical field. Such doctors should be board certified in plastic surgery (not necessarily only American Board certified as you may read in some internet sites) from their respective countries of training. This means that the doctor has undergone the required duration of residency training and has passed examinations leading to certification. This ensures for the patients that the doctor is first of all a fully trained surgeon and then has further been trained in the nuances of plastic surgery, tissue healing and related areas. Admittedly several surgeons from other fields such as otolaryngology and ophthalmology have also contributed to aesthetic surgery and are capable of doing aesthetic surgery in their respective areas; and there have been some very gifted surgeons from these specialties as well.
But a worrying trend today is that cosmetic surgery is now being offered by a variety of doctors in some countries [USA in particular] from non-core specialties; where any doctor, even a non-surgeon is allowed to practice this type of surgery in some states. This is generally fraught with danger. It is important therefore that the patients check that the doctor is first of all a surgeon, is certified and accredited in the respective area of surgery and has hospital affiliations / privileges that ensure that proper background checks have been performed.
Broadly speaking, aesthetic procedures can be classified into Face, Breasts and the rest of the Body. Please seek information under the relevant section.