What is the difference between cosmetic surgery and plastic surgery? January 21, 2023 Cosmetic and plastic surgery are typically used synonymously, but do not have the same meaning in the medical world. “Cosmetic surgery” encompasses any procedure whose techniques focus solely on improving the outward appearance of a patient. On the other hand, “plastic surgery” refers to any procedure that involves reconstruction of an area of the body, whether that be scar revision, breast reconstruction, etc. You can learn more about the differences between a cosmetic surgeon and a plastic surgeon from the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery. Drs. Downey and Bullocks at Heights Plastic Surgery offer a wide range of surgical procedures and will educate you on the options that will work best for you during your initial consultation.