These days, it seems as if everyone is getting a little something injected for the purpose of looking younger. According to both the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the #1 most popular cosmetic procedure in the US is botulinum toxin injections (like Botox® and Dysport®), and #2 is dermal fillers (like Restylane®, Juvéderm®, Radiesse®, and more). Both of these treatments offer minimally invasive ways to reduce fine lines and wrinkles, and their immense popularity comes from their convenience (typically a 15- or 30-minute treatment with no downtime), consistently successful results, and suitability for nearly anyone. But, at the same time, the idea of facial injections sounds understandably scary to many patients. So, in truth, how safe are botulinum toxin and filler injections?
The safety of cosmetic injectables ultimately comes down to your provider. Cosmetic injections are true medical procedures, so it’s important to recognize the seriousness of feeling confident in the person performing them. If you’re receiving your botulinum toxin or facial filler injections from a qualified medical professional, such as a board-certified plastic surgeon, the side effects are expected to be very mild and temporary, and the risk of serious side effects is extremely low. For most patients, the side effects are limited to mild swelling and bruising, and they generally fade within a week.
However, your risk factors change dramatically when your injections are being performed by someone who is not properly qualified and educated. Serious side effects are often caused by the product being injected incorrectly or injected into an area where it shouldn’t be, such as into a blood vessel. While a board-certified plastic surgeon who specializes in facial rejuvenation has extensive knowledge of your complex facial anatomy, so that they can inject the products into the precise areas for maximum safety and effectiveness, there are many people who deliver these injections without having the knowledge they need to do it correctly.
Another important factor in keeping your cosmetic facial injections safe and effective is ensuring that you are receiving the true product. Sadly, there are companies who produce counterfeit versions of popular products like Botox® and Restylane®. There are also versions of these products that are produced abroad and are not FDA-approved for safety and effectiveness. Reputable board-certified plastic surgeons will allow you to see the bottle before they perform your injections so that you know you’re getting the right product, and they have the experience to know not to use inauthentic products. However, when you go to a provider who is not qualified, you also increase the likelihood of getting an inferior or potentially dangerous product injected, as these people often do not have the authorization to purchase the genuine products.
While this article has focused on a single type of treatment, the same principle holds true for any cosmetic procedure—seeing a true board-certified plastic surgeon can provide you with excellent results and an extremely low risk factor, while getting treated by an unqualified provider is never worth the risk. If a price seems too good to be true, it probably is. If you’re ready to take the next step toward a safe and effective treatment with cosmetic injectables, schedule a consultation with me, Dr. John L. LeRoy. Or, for more plastic surgery tips, join me on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.
The desire to look younger is nearly universal among middle-aged and older adults, although not everyone who wants to look younger actually takes concrete actions to make that happen. As a double board-certified plastic surgeon who specializes in facial rejuvenation, I often see patients who have spent years considering a procedure, and have finally gotten that final push to go for it because they have a special event on their calendar—a wedding, a special vacation, etc. But in these cases, it’s important to plan ahead to make sure that, by the time your event approaches, your results have truly reached their peak, and this can take longer than some patients realize. When most patients think of their plastic surgery recovery time, they’re thinking about how long it will take before they can return to work, but that is simply one stage of the recovery process. In fact, even after you’re back at work, it can take significantly longer for all of the residual swelling, bruising, redness, and other effects to fully resolve. The chart below offers some insight into when that may be.
It’s important to realize that these plastic surgery recovery times are all very general. Each patient’s body heals at its own pace, and recovery will depend on a number of external factors as well, like overall health, skin care, following your pre- and post-treatment instructions, not smoking, and more. Ultimately, it’s best to come in for a consultation as early as possible, so that we can discuss your aesthetic goals and medical history in order to make a personal plan. To get your consultation on the schedule, give my office a call today. Or, for more helpful plastic surgery tips and the latest news, follow me, Dr. John L. LeRoy on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.
If you ask mothers about the ways their bodies have changed after pregnancy, breastfeeding, and motherhood, most would give you the same general answer—“I love my children, and I certainly don’t regret having them, but I do miss my pre-pregnancy figure.” As much time and effort as moms spend on their children, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to restore the self-confidence you used to have. For many women, a “mommy makeover” is the answer.
A mommy makeover is simply any combination of multiple plastic surgeries intended to repair the effects of pregnancy and breastfeeding. In most cases, this involves a tummy tuck, liposuction, and some type of breast surgery. The tummy tuck addresses excess stretched skin from the pregnancy, as well as the common “pooch” in the lower abdomen that forms when pregnancy separates the muscles. The tummy tuck gives these muscles a slimmer, flatter contour, while also removing excess fat in the area and making the skin tight and flat across your new figure. Liposuction in a mommy makeover is often used to reduce stubborn fat from surrounding areas, like the love handles, thighs, or back. The breast surgery will vary, because pregnancy and breastfeeding can have different impacts on the size and shape of the breasts, but many women opt for a breast lift combined with either a breast augmentation or breast reduction.
While it’s not uncommon for a patient to receive plastic surgeries for different areas of their body over the course of several years, the difference with the mommy makeover is that the breast surgery, liposuction, and tummy tuck are all performed at the same time. This provides two distinct advantages:
As safe and doable as cosmetic surgery has become, it’s still a significant event that requires time, energy, a commitment to your health, discomfort during recovery, and financial planning, so if you’re going to have surgery, you want to make the most of your results. A mommy makeover is designed to do just this, because it addresses each of your primary cosmetic concerns at the same time rather than treating a solitary issue.
Lower Recovery Time
Mothers are the masters of multi-tasking, and that’s precisely what a mommy makeover does: if you’re going to be staying home and resting to recover from a tummy tuck, you might as well spend that time recovering from the breast augmentation and liposuction you’ve been considering, too. While a typical mommy makeover does have a moderately long recovery period compared to many other plastic surgeries (because it involves a tummy tuck), it’s significantly shorter than having three separate surgeries with three separate recoveries.
Mommy makeovers are designed for the purpose of tailoring an approach specifically for mothers, a group of people who tend to have similar cosmetic concerns and who need to keep their recovery time to a minimum without compromising their results. If you want to learn more about mommy makeovers and what yours might involve, schedule a consultation with me today. Or, for more plastic surgery tips and information about cosmetic surgery options, follow me, Dr. John L. LeRoy on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.
It goes without saying that some people are more bothered by aging than others. For those who feel best when they look more youthful, keeping a young look can feel like a war with multiple fronts, because aging impacts your skin, your facial structure, your eyes, and more, all at the same time. For patients who truly want to make the most of their facial rejuvenation efforts, combining multiple procedures that they can benefit from (like a facelift and eyelid surgery) into one surgery can offer them more comprehensive results and an easier road than having each procedure separately. But to some, the idea of having two or more cosmetic surgeries at once sounds like a dangerous extreme. So, truthfully, is it safe?
The short answer is yes—combining most procedures can offer numerous benefits without compromising your safety. But the key word is can. It’s always best to use a board-certified plastic surgeon (as opposed to a “cosmetic surgeon,” a title doctors often use when they have not been board-certified in plastic surgery). But the more complex your cosmetic surgery gets, the more important your surgeon’s abilities are, so look for someone who also has ample experience in the type of procedure you’re considering. Some surgeons specialize in body contouring, others in breast surgery, others in all types of cosmetic surgery, so if you want to focus on your face and eyes, look for a plastic surgeon who specializes in facial rejuvenation.
An important part of making sure you can safely have your facelift and eyelid surgery at the same time is evaluating your health. Before any plastic surgery, you will undergo a medical exam with blood tests and potentially other tests to make sure you’re healthy enough to undergo surgery and recover well. Rest assured that as a plastic surgeon, I’m focused on your health and safety just as much as I’m focused on your appearance, so this medical evaluation will allow me to make sure that your health does not put you at a higher risk of complications.
Ultimately, the bottom line is that if you do your homework and find an experienced board-certified plastic surgeon you can trust, he or she will be able to make an accurate recommendation about how to provide the results you want in a safe way. In many cases, having your face lift and eyelid surgery at the same time can cut down on total recovery time and cost, while giving you the end result you truly want in a shorter period of time. To discuss whether you may be a candidate for this popular combination, schedule a consultation with me, Dr. John L. LeRoy. Or, for more plastic surgery tips and helpful information, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.
Nearly all of us have at least one area of our body that we want to slim down, so it’s no surprise that fat removal—called liposuction—has long been among the most popular cosmetic surgeries in the country. But it’s also one of the most misunderstood surgeries, too. As a double board-certified plastic surgeon, I strive to educate patients and potential patients about the field of plastic surgery, so to help you know the true facts about liposuction, I’ve compiled answers to some of the most common liposuction myths that might trick you.
Myth #1: By removing excess fat, liposuction is an alternative to losing weight through diet and exercise.
While both weight loss and liposuction have the goal of reducing fat, they’re done in two very different ways and for two very different purposes. For the most part, you have the same number of fat cells throughout your life, and weight gain and weight loss happen when these fat cells either enlarge or shrink. Liposuction, on the other hand, manually removes some of the fat cells in an extremely specific area. The core difference is that weight loss, for people who are overweight, reduces total body fat (including the fat surrounding internal organs, the type that tends to cause health problems) for overall better health and a slimmer appearance throughout the entire body. Liposuction, on the other hand, is designed for people who are already a healthy weight and simply have one or a few specific “problem areas” (like “love handles” or a “double chin”) for which they just need a cosmetic fix. So the bottom line is that if you’re overweight, it’s best to lose weight the old fashioned way and then, if necessary, use liposuction to polish off the cosmetic results after you’ve reached your goal weight.
Myth #2: After liposuction has removed fat cells, the fat is gone for good.
Technically, the excess fat cells liposuction removes won’t grow back. However, your remaining fat cells (both in the treatment area and throughout the rest of your body) are just as capable of enlarging as they were before. Taking in more calories than you’re burning can and will result in weight gain regardless of whether you’ve had liposuction, so the best way to make sure your treatment area stays slender is to keep up with a healthy diet and exercise regimen.
Myth #3: Liposuction is much easier than other plastic surgeries, so it doesn’t need to be performed by a true plastic surgeon.
Liposuction uses very tiny incisions (just a few millimeters long), but that doesn’t actually mean that it’s not a “serious surgery.” Any surgery carries risks, and while the complication rates for liposuction (and other cosmetic surgeries) are low, there’s no need to risk your safety by having it performed by an unqualified provider. Even when it’s performed in a minimally invasive way to treat a particularly small area, like my Band Aid Liposuction, choosing an experienced and knowledgeable surgeon is not something you should take lightly. To find a surgeon with high credentials and experience, look for a board-certified plastic surgeon who has earned and been granted membership into several professional organizations (such as the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery) like me.
Myth #4: Any kind of fat can be removed with liposuction.
Liposuction can treat nearly any area of the body, literally from head to toe. But it removes a very specific type of fat called subcutaneous fat—the type of fat that has the most impact on appearance. It cannot remove the type of fat that grows inside the abdomen under the muscle and around the internal organs (called visceral fat, the type that tends to lead to health problems), nor can it reduce the appearance of cellulite (which is caused by a combination of fat within the skin and a few other factors). This is why liposuction is a purely cosmetic procedure, and does not offer the health benefits that weight loss does.
Myth #5: Liposuction is being replaced by non-surgical fat reduction.
It’s exciting to watch medical technology advance, and in the past several years, a number of non-surgical fat reduction devices have hit the market, and they’re seeing great popularity. However, liposuction continues to become more and more frequent, actually showing a 32% increase in the past five years (according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery). So why hasn’t non-surgical fat reduction stolen liposuction’s thunder? First of all, non-invasive treatments don’t offer the same amount of control that liposuction does. Surgical fat removal allows a surgeon to actually sculpt specific contours, while non-surgical therapies simply reduce the overall number of fat cells in a localized area. And second, many patients who choose non-invasive fat reduction are people who either are not candidates for surgery or have chosen not to have surgery, so these new non-surgical treatments simply offer an option for patients who did not have one in the past.
Sculpting your ideal physique is truly a team effort between you and your cosmetic surgeon. Ultimately, the best results come to patients who are committed to staying on top of their health with diet and exercise, and who use plastic surgery for its true purpose: resolving very specific, localized cosmetic bulges of fat. To find out if you’re a candidate for liposuction, schedule a consultation with me, Dr. John L. LeRoy. And, for more helpful plastic surgery information and health tips, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.