Is a Liposuction Procedure Right for You?

Liposuction is the leading cosmetic procedure to help sculpt, tone and trim areas on the body and to diminish the appearance of stubborn bumps and lumps from localized fat. This type of fat is often resistant to both diet and exercise, and it can be frustrating for those that exercise regularly and eat a healthy diet.

Whether it is in the form of persistent stomach “pooch” after pregnancy, areas of fat around the inner thighs, or bulges along the flanks and back, localized stubborn fat can be difficult to get rid of permanently.

Thankfully, liposuction has been one of the most popular and top performed cosmetic procedures to treat stubborn fat.

How Does a Liposuction Procedure Work?

Local or regional anesthesia is generally used for liposuction procedures. In some cases, general anesthesia is required to induce temporary unconsciousness. During this time, the surgical team will monitor your heart rate, blood pressure and blood oxygen level throughout the procedure.

The procedure process is as follows:

1. The surgical team prepares the areas of your body that will treated, and local or general anesthesia will be induced.
2. Through a small incision, a suction tube is inserted into the fat pockets to remove fat in treatment areas.
3. Removed fat is vacuumed away through the suction tube, and several skin punctures may be needed to treat large areas.
4. After the fat is removed, small drainage tubes may be inserted into the treatment area to remove blood and fluid that collects during the first few days after surgery.
5. A compression garment will be placed on you, and used as an essential part of recovery.

The procedure may last up to several hours, depending on the area(s) of fat removal. If general anesthesia was administered, you will wake up in a recovery room. You’ll typically spend a few hours in the clinic to monitor your recovery.

Who is a Good Candidate for Liposuction?

For certain individuals, exercise and diet is not enough to get rid of pockets of stubborn fat. A good candidate for liposuction has:

• A minimal amount of excess skin and good skin elasticity. Loss of skin elasticity can compromise liposuction results.
• Localized deposits of fat in your abdomen, arms, thighs and/or neck.
• Physically fit, no more than 20-pounds overweight. If you are planning to lose or gain a significant amount of weight, this is not the time to undergo liposuction.

Liposuction is not recommended for patients with cellulite or those who are overweight. Those with cellulite are not good candidates for liposuction because they may develop skin irregularities in the treatment area.

What is the Recovery Process?

After your procedure, post-operative instructions will be provided. Wear compression garment regularly to help reduce swelling. It will work to compress the skin as it re-adjusts after the liposuction procedure. It is important to wear compression garments regularly as the skin tissue need to be supported and sculpted for proper re-shaping to occur.

Post-op, you will likely experience swelling, bruising, numbness, and pain, but these symptoms can be managed with medication. Stitches will be removed within 5 to 10 days, and antibiotics may be prescribed to prevent infection. After your procedures, walk regularly to help prevent blood clots from forming in your legs. Avoid strenuous activity for about 4 to 6 weeks after the surgery, and may return to work within a few days of the surgery. Bruising and swelling usually resolve within a few weeks.

Schedule a Consultation

Although there are some great advantages to a liposuction procedure, it is important to consult an informed and experienced plastic surgeon when making this decision. There are plenty of cosmetic procedures to reduce unwanted fat, and this can be overwhelming. Here, at Tampa Aesthetic & Plastic Surgery, we will discuss and review your treatment options to find the perfect fit for you and your desired results.

At Tampa Aesthetic & Plastic Surgery, we take pride in providing the leading plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures. Spearheaded by Dr. Joseph M. Brown, a board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon, Tampa Aesthetic & Plastic Surgery is one of the top plastic surgery practices in Lutz, Tampa, Trinity and Brandon area. Dr. Brown has carefully crafted his practice into a collaborative space where patients can comfortably communicate, visualize and achieve their ideal goals with his extensive expertise. For more information, call Plastic Surgery TB at (813) 774-5733 or schedule a consultation here.

Who is Breast Reduction For?

Having more beautiful breasts does not always mean having bigger breasts. It’s all about shape and proportion, and a skilled cosmetic surgeon can improve both using breast reduction techniques tailored to your unique needs. Learn more about your options for breast reduction below.

Choosing Breast Reduction

Overly large breasts can cause health and emotional problems. It can also cause self-image issues, and result in physical pain and discomfort.

The weight of excess breast tissue can impair your ability to lead an active normal life. The emotional discomfort and self-consciousness can be as important an issue as the physical discomfort and pain.

Breast reduction surgery is done to change the size, weight, firmness, and shape of the breasts. You may decide to have breast reduction surgery if you:
• Are physically healthy
• Have realistic expectations
• Don’t smoke
• Are bothered by feeling that your breasts are too large
• Have breasts that limit your physical activity
• Experience back, neck, and shoulder pain caused by the weight of your breasts
• Have shoulder indentations from bra straps
• Have skin irritation beneath the breast crease

Deciding on a breast reduction surgery is a personal choice. You may decide to have breast reduction surgery to make you feel more comfortable, reduce the limitations that large, heavy breasts place on physical or other activities, or alter your appearance.

Large heavy breasts can cause back and neck pain, skin irritation and posture problems. The constant pull of heavy breasts may leave painful bra-strap indentations in the shoulders. Breast reduction surgery can eliminate these problems.

What to Think About

If you are thinking about having a breast reduction, contact your insurance company. Some insurance companies cover some or all of the costs of breast reduction surgery if it is being done to relieve back pain, skin problems or other medical ailments caused by large or heavy breasts. They typically do not cover breast reduction surgery done solely for cosmetic purposes.

The most common risks of breast reduction surgery include:

• Scarring. Breast reduction surgery leaves visible scars on the breasts. However, how bad the scars vary from person to person and by the type of incisions. It may appear red and swollen at first, but scars typically fade over time.
• Unevenly positioned nipples, or breasts that are not the same size or shape.
• Loss of feeling in the nipples or breasts. This is often temporary, lasting a few months.

Schedule a Consultation

If you’re considering having a breast reduction, choosing a cosmetic surgeon is the most important decision you’ll make. While some in the plastic surgery field consider breast reduction to be a reconstructive procedure, a patient’s goal is rarely to solely correct physical symptoms without any consideration for aesthetic improvements. You should feel confident that your cosmetic surgeon can reduce your breasts to the right size to alleviate any discomfort and create a more beautiful breast shape that looks natural with your body.

At Tampa Aesthetic & Plastic Surgery, we take pride in providing the leading plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures. Spearheaded by Dr. Joseph M. Brown, a board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon, Tampa Aesthetic & Plastic Surgery is one of the top plastic surgery practices in Lutz, Tampa, Trinity and Brandon area. Dr. Brown has carefully crafted his practice into a collaborative space where patients can comfortably communicate, visualize and achieve their ideal goals with his extensive expertise. For more information, call Plastic Surgery TB at (813) 774-5733 or schedule a consultation.

Breast Augmentation or Breast Lift: Which is Right for You?

I don’t like the way my breasts look. Am I a candidate for a breast augmentation or a breast lift? What is the difference between the two?

Due to a patient’s natural morphology, or due to changes associated with pregnancy, weight fluctuation, or with natural aging in the presence of our friend, gravity, many women are unhappy with the shape or appearance of their breasts. Breast augmentation and mastopexy (or breast lift) are two distinct surgical procedures that create different changes in a breast.
Breast augmentation involves placing an implant underneath the breast tissue and/or the muscle underneath the breast tissue to increase the volume of a breast. This gives the breast mound more projection and makes it appear fuller. This surgery is best suited for women who want to be bigger. In other words, even with a supportive bra the patient wishes her breasts were larger and is unhappy with her current volume. Most of my patients who have had this have felt their breasts were small their entire lives, or noticed significant deflation after childbirth.

Mastopexy, or breast lift, is a surgery that aims to decrease the amount of excess skin on the breast, while maintaining its current volume. It also places the nipple in a higher, more forward-pointing position as some patients may have noticed their nipples “moving” lower and lower on their breast mound over time.

I always ask my patients if they are happy with their current breast size when they are wearing a supportive bra. If their answer is “yes, but I would like for my nipple position to be where it was when I was younger,” then that patient would likely benefit from a mastopexy. If the answer is, “No, I would prefer to be bigger/have more volume,” then that patient would likely benefit from a breast augmentation, with or without a lift.

What if I want my breasts to be more youthful and bigger?

Some women notice both sagging and deflation of their breast tissue after weight loss or pregnancy. These patients desire a more youthful position of their breasts and are unhappy with their volume of breast tissue while wearing a supportive bra. These patients are candidates for augmentation-mastopexy, which involves placement of an implant under the breast tissue while at the same time performing a breast lift. This may be performed in a single operation safely for many patients. In some situations, it is safer to separate the two procedures by about 3 months. This is a decision that is made based on the volume of breast tissue a patient already has as well as the extent to which the breast needs to be lifted.

If my breasts appear saggy, can an implant make them look perkier?

Yes….and no. If the main cause of the sagging appearance is deflation and the breast is in a good position with respect to the rest of a woman’s body, an augmentation can restore volume in a deflated appearing breast and make it appear “perkier.” However, the amount of “lift” that comes from placing an implant on nipple position is mild. For patients who have had significant descent of their breast tissue and have significant amount of excess skin, it would take too large of an implant to create a “lifting” effect. The key to deciding between an augmentation vs. a mastopexy is an open dialogue between the patient and the plastic surgeon. Good communication will allow for a clear definition of the specific concerns a patient has regarding her breasts, which allows for an appropriately selected treatment plan.

Mommy Makeover Surgery

What procedures does a “Mommy Makeover” Surgery include?

The joys of becoming a mommy come with the frustrating bodily changes caused by pregnancy. “Mommy makeover” is a general term that refers to surgery of the breast and abdomen that aims to create a more youthful and aesthetic contour. Typically, a mastopexy (or breast lift) is performed to lift and tighten the breasts that have deflated and begun to sag due to breast feeding/aging. An abdominoplasty (or tummy tuck) is also performed at the same time to remove excess skin and bring the rectus (or six-pack) muscles back to the midline, which helps to narrow the waist and restore an “hour-glass” silhouette.

Every patient is different and, therefore, their concerns and treatments will be uniquely tailored to them. Some women may benefit from a mastopexy, while others may benefit from an augmentation with an implant. Finally, some women may benefit from both an augmentation and a mastopexy to restore both volume and a more youthful position of the breast. Likewise, a full abdominoplasty is appropriate for some patients, while others may benefit from a mini-abdominoplasty and/or liposuction. The key is for me to listen to the patient’s concerns, understand her goals, and for us to pick a plan that can safely achieve them.

How much weight should I lose before having a Mommy Makeover?

Each patient is different so there is no magic number for weight loss. However, the closer someone is to their ideal body weight the less likely they are to suffer from post-operative complications. This has been shown in many medical studies. I encourage patients to be safe and methodical about losing weight at a moderate pace in a sustainable manner. After surgery, weight gain can affect the results to varying degrees. For this reason, it is best for the patient to be at or close to their goal weight for at least a month or two prior to surgery.

How long after having my last baby should I wait to have a mommy makeover?

I would recommend at least a year from a medical standpoint. That being said, most women wait longer than this to have surgery. From a personal standpoint, it is usually easier on the patient to wait until the youngest child is old enough to be a little self-sufficient and not have to be carried around. Between the actual child and that bag with the “child’s stuff,” being a mother is a very physical job. This is particularly true in the first few years of the baby/toddler’s life, which would make the recovery period very difficult for most people. Ultimately, it’s a personal decision for each patient. I encourage patients to do as much as they possibly can with diet and exercise. When they get to a point where they just can’t see any more results, it’s usually a good indication that it may be time for surgery.

How long does a complete Mommy Makeover Surgery take (the actual surgeries)?

Depending on the needs of the patient, the surgery can vary from 4 to 6 hours. It is typically performed on an outpatient basis and patients will usually go home the same day. In some cases, it may be better for the patient to spend the night in a hospital with nursing supervision. This is decided during the preoperative consultation and is specific for each patient.

How long is the recovery period if I have multiple procedures done together?

The recovery period is not extended for combined surgical procedures and is largely dictated by the abdominoplasty portion of the surgery. Patients are encouraged to ambulate and move around the house the day of surgery. Strenuous activities like yoga, running, abdominal crunches can be resumed after 6 weeks. When surgeries are combined, the activity restrictions are very similar and the time to normal/strenuous activity is not increased.

I still plan to have more children. Should I consider having a mommy makeover now?

If having children is in the works for the future, then surgery should be put on the back shelf for now. The effects of surgery can be completely reversed with pregnancy which would really take away from the financial and personal investment of the patient. The goal of the surgery is to have a successful outcome that lasts as long as possible.

Do you offer a Daddy Makeover?

“Daddy makeover” is probably a less-recognized term in today’s society. However, we are all aware of the potential “dad-bod” that can ensue after time with the kids supplants time at the gym. I always encourage patients to do everything they can with a healthy lifestyle regarding diet and exercise. When they get to a point where the stubborn areas declare themselves, we can address them appropriately and safely with the best surgical option available.

Frequently Asked Questions About Aging Hands

I don’t like the way my hands look. Is there anything that can be done to improve the aged appearance?

With the exception of the head and neck, our hands are typically the most visible part of our bodies to the public eye. There is a lot of attention given to treatment modalities that aim to reverse the effects of aging in the face, as well as other areas like the breasts, arms, abdomen, etc. Due to sun exposure and the loss of soft tissue volume over time, our hands age and demonstrate the effects of aging as much as anywhere else on the human body. With advances in surgical techniques, there are options available to patients that can reverse some of these effects of aging.

What is it that makes my hands look older?

Similar to the face, hands display the effects of aging through loss of soft tissue volume and skin changes from chronic sun exposure. As we age, the soft tissue in our hands begins to shrink. As the soft tissue shrinks, the “cushion” effect it had been creating for the veins and tendons in the back of the hand is lost, leaving a harsher and more skeletonized appearance. Also, with chronic sun exposure, pigmentary changes begin to arise which also gives a more aged appearance.

What can be done to reverse these changes?

As there are two potential causes for and aged appearance, there are two aging hands treatments. First, restoring volume in the back of the hands can help blunt the appearance of veins and tendons, which leaves a much more youthful appearance. This can be accomplished with the injection of fillers, which are temporary, or fat taken from a different part of the body, which is permanent. Second, some of the pigmentary changes can be treated with topical therapy like chemical peels and laser therapy.

Where is the fat taken from and how do you get it? Can it be performed at the same time as another surgery?

Typically, fat is taken from the abdomen or inner thigh region. It can be harvested from anywhere in the body where fatty deposits reside. It is harvested through liposuction with small cannulas, which are blunt stainless steel tubes. Fat grafting to the hands is a relatively quick procedure that can be performed at the same time as another surgery like a facelift, or performed as an adjunct to liposuction on another part of the body.

Are the effects of fat grafting to the hands permanent?

Over the past decade, many advances have been made in techniques involved with processing fat for placement into other areas of the body. With state of the art techniques, the majority of the fat injected into the hands will survive and stay forever, as long as the patient’s weight remains stable. This is one of the main benefits to performing fat grafting to the hands as opposed to injecting synthetic soft tissue fillers, which last for about a year or so.

How do I know if I am a good candidate for fat transfer to the hands?

If you are bothered by the appearance of your hands due to prominent veins or tendons and/or feel as though your hands have a “hollow” or “deflated” appearance, you may be a good candidate for fat grafting to the hands. If there is any question, the best thing to do is to schedule a consultation with a qualified surgeon and discuss your aging hands treatment options.