What is the advantage of an overnight stay in hospital, versus day-case surgery?

This is an interesting question and to a large extent the answer depends on the individual. These days some people prefer to be able to go home on the day of their surgery in order to relax in the comfort of their own home. Many, however, prefer the security of an overnight stay in hospital, where they know a medical professional will be on hand if they have any problems.

There are cosmetic surgeons who offer quite complex surgical procedures as day cases. Personally, I prefer to be able to monitor my patients overnight after surgery, to ensure that they are recovering well and are physically fit to return home the next day.

When is an overnight stay appropriate?

Generally, if your surgery is performed under a general anaesthetic, you will be expected to spend a night in hospital. This is so that we can ensure that you have fully recovered from the effects of the anaesthetic before returning home, but it also allows the surgical team to keep an eye on how you are healing after the surgery.

In my cosmetic surgery practice, facelift and breast augmentation patients generally spend a night in hospital after surgery, as these procedures are performed under general anaesthetic.

When is day-case surgery appropriate?

As mentioned above, there are surgeons who will offer almost any cosmetic surgery procedure as a day case. In my practice, I prefer patients to spend a night in hospital for monitoring. If a patient has a non-surgical procedure, such as Botox or dermal fillers, then of course they can return home immediately after the treatment.

If your procedure is performed under local anaesthetic, then the effects of the anaesthesia will not last so long and you could, if your surgeon agrees, return home on the day of surgery.