Archive for March, 2011

Why You Should Combine Plastic Surgery Procedures

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011
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When I see patients in my office who have more than one concern, I often recommend combining surgeries. Combining plastic surgery procedures is a cost-effective way of achieving a more comprehensive makeover, and studies I have done over recent years suggest that the safety of combined procedures is on par with the safety of individual cosmetic surgery procedures.

Combined procedures for body and breast contouring are increasingly commonplace these days. For instance, some of my Los Angeles tummy tuck patients will benefit from combining liposuction of the midbody, hips or thighs. The removal of excess skin as well as fat can result in beautiful, smooth body contours.

Also, many tummy tuck patients choose to combine breast procedures with their surgery. These combined surgeries are often called Mommy Makeover procedures, addressing the specific areas that are of concern to women who have had children.

Combining surgical procedures has the added benefit of reducing total recovery time, when compared to having the procedures separately.

Facelift Techniques

Sunday, March 27th, 2011
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Throughout the years, plastic surgery has progressed, and new techniques have developed. Depending on the patient, I may use one of several techniques when performing a facelift in Los Angeles.

One technique that I recommend for deep lifting is the SMAS facelift, which stands for superficial musculo-aponeurotic system. This technique concentrates on the thin, underlying connective tissue layer below the skin. By lifting both the muscle and skin, I am able to create a very natural appearance and avoid the “pulled” or windblown look that was associated with facelifts decades ago.

I also perform “mini” facelifts, which are meant for less extreme lifting than the SMAS technique due to the smaller incisions required. With less scarring, less bleeding and a shorter recovery, mini facelifts are a particularly good choice for younger patients.

No matter what technique you are considering, remember an important point: this is your one and only face. Choose wisely when selecting a surgeon and do your homework so that you can be satisfied with your results.

5 Ways to Avoid Pain after Surgery

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011
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Even with modern techniques and technology, some degree of discomfort will occur following most Los Angeles plastic surgery procedures. Tolerance of discomfort differs from patient to patient, and also depends on the type of surgery performed. Although it is an unavoidable aspect of plastic surgery, there are steps that you can take to ensure that you will feel as comfortable as possible after your procedure.

  1. Walk around. Begin walking around as soon as you receive clearance from your plastic surgeon to do so. Being mobile helps your circulation.
  2. Drink plenty of fluids. It is common to be dehydrated after a surgical procedure. Drink water, soup, or fluids to replace electrolytes after your surgery as instructed so your body is ready to take care of itself.
  3. Get enough sleep. Making sure you are getting the proper amount of sleep each night will help your body recover quickly.
  4. Take any prescription as indicated. Many pain medications contain anti-inflammatory agents to reduce swelling, which can help tissue repair particularly during the first few days after surgery.
  5. Alert your doctor about any allergies. Talk with your doctor before your procedure about any medicines you may be allergic to. Also, be sure to closely follow all post-surgical instructions your doctor provides.

Breast Augmentation Incision Options

Thursday, March 17th, 2011
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When considering breast augmentation, how do you know which incision method is appropriate for you? There are four common incisions that are typically employed; however, not all surgeons perform all of these techniques. The four main methods are:

  • Periareolar incision (around the nipple)
  • Inframammary fold (under the breast)
  • Transaxillary incision (through the underarm)
  • Transumbilical incision (through the belly button)

I take the time to guide my Los Angeles plastic surgery patients considering breast implants about their incision options. Experienced breast augmentation surgeons are the most helpful resource for women who want to understand these options in depth. When making a recommendation, several factors will be taken into consideration, such as your anatomy, your goals, as well as the type and size of your breast implants.

There are, of course, benefits and drawbacks to each incision method offered. The inframammary fold is one of the most commonly used incisions. This allows the surgeon full access to and clear visibility of the implant pocket. The periareolar incision, created around the nipples where they meet the breast skin, is also a popular choice due to the fact that resultant scarring can blend in to the texture and color of the areola. Also, the implant can be placed precisely in the pocket with this method. The transaxillary and transumbilical incisions are advantageous because they leave no scar on the breast, but many surgeons do not offer these incision options because access to the implant pocket is indirect.

How do you choose? Discuss your goals openly and honestly with your surgeon to find the appropriate incision method for you.

Body Contouring 101

Monday, March 14th, 2011
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Body contouring is a way for women and men who have exhausted other methods of diet and exercise to contour and tone specific areas of the body. Typically, excess skin and fat is removed from targeted areas of the body.

While body contouring is never a substitute for a healthy diet and lifestyle, it can help improve the body shape for people who find that the pounds won’t budge from certain areas. For instance, my Los Angeles tummy tuck patients choose the procedure to remove unwanted fat and tissue, while tightening the underlying abdominal muscles.

Below is some basic information about body contouring:

  • Body contouring can help create a smooth body shape.
  • Procedures such as a tummy tuck can help remove excess skin and tissue from areas that do not respond to diet and exercise.
  • After significant weight loss, body contouring procedures can be particularly helpful for removing excess skin to reveal a slimmer shape.
  • There are various body lifting procedures that exist for almost every area of the body – legs, abdomen, buttocks, back, arms, and chest.

Body contouring can consist of several procedures, but at the end of the day, all are meant to reshape and contour the body. The best way to see if you are a candidate is to talk with your surgeon.

Dr. Grant Stevens

I am a board-certified Beverly Hills plastic surgeon with over 20 years of experience researching and implementing new approaches to plastic surgery. At Plastic Surgery Insider, you get the benefit of my experience and authority when you read my perspectives on the latest news and procedures in plastic surgery.
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