Plastic surgery began as a practice concerned with function and form with a goal of returning the concerned body part to 鈥渘 ormal.鈥?The specialty as we know it today was born in the war field and evolved as dedicated professionals realized the importance of reconstructive surgery not only concerned physical appearance and function but also contributed to a patient 鈥檚 humanity as the aesthetic outcome boosted confidence and self-esteem 鈥攁 n integral part of the healing process. There is documentation as early as 800 B.C. that physicians used skin grafts for the purpose of reconstruction, however, the vast development of the art form and the division of reconstructive vs. cosmetic procedures began as doctors began dealing with patients during World War I. Due to the development of the modern weapons, surgeons began to see like never before facial and head injuries such as shattered jaws, missing facial features, and gaping holes in faces and skulls. Reconstructive surgery began to take on a cosmetic approach as some doctors of the time began to dedicate their entire professions to those severely disfigured in war. It was as these professionals honed their skills treating the airmen, soldiers, and sailors that the two distinctive categories of plastic surgeries emerged. Reconstructive surgery is usually defined as those operations that are not 鈥渆 lective.鈥?Devoted to returning the body part in question back to its more natural form and prior function, this category includes correcting abnormal structures that are related to birth defects, injury or other trauma, infection, or disease. The three most commonly performed reconstructive surgeries in the United States are related to tumor ablation, hand surgery, and breast reconstruction. The latter includes even implants, lifts, and areola tattoos as these things are necessary to return original form to the breast after a mastectomy. Indeed the origin of the field has a heroic history, and it is out of this history that cosmetic surgery began to emerge. Doctors and others, particularly the patients, began to notice that the aesthetic restorative measures were as much or more a part of the healing process as the corrective part of the surgeries, and by the middle nineteen-hundreds the cosmetic counterpart of reconstructive surgery began a life of its own. Aesthetic plastic surgery involves techniques intended for the "enhancement" of appearance through surgical and medical techniques, and is specifically concerned with maintaining normal appearance, restoring it, or enhancing it beyond the average level toward some aesthetic ideal. Today, cosmetic, or aesthetic plastic, procedures are intended for desired enhancement of appearance, and are specifically sought after by those who wish to maintain or surpass an ideal. Among the most prevalent procedures today are abdominoplasty, blepharoplasty, phalloplasty, breast augmentation and reduction, face lifts and lip enhancements. Even chemical peels fall under this umbrella. The two categories are often pitted against each other as necessary versus superficial, though the outcomes are the same. The patients 鈥?desires, whether elective or due to injury, trauma or birth defect, are the same and the positive effects of any plastic surgery certainly go beyond the tangible. Plastic surgery in Atlanta can be found performed at a number of locations, but it's essential that if you decide to have a procedure done it is in the hands of skilled and trained professionals. For more information, visit http://www.swancenteratlanta.com.