I always enjoy answering questions my patients have about various cosmetic surgery procedures and treatments available at Southern Plastic Surgery. By sharing these exchanges, I hope I am able to both educate and encourage patients not to be shy if they have questions of their own. This week I’m fielding questions about three of my most popular cosmetic procedures: tummy tuck, liposuction & Radiesse® Hand Rejuvenation.
Dear Dr. Whiteman,
I absolutely hate the stretch marks and extra skin that I have after having two kids. Although the extra skin does not bother me as much as the stretch marks I have developed. They are most noticeable on my hips and under my belly button. Can a tummy tuck help me reduce these stretch marks?
Although there isn’t a specific procedure for stretch mark removal, some stretch marks can be eliminated with procedures that involve skin removal like a tummy tuck. During a tummy tuck, excess abdominal skin is removed and (in some instances) the underlying muscles are tightened. Stretch marks below the belly button can be eliminated through tummy tuck surgery, but this will not eliminate stretch marks on your hips or on any skin left behind. If you have excess hanging skin on your hips/thighs, some of the bothersome stretch marks on your thighs could be eliminated with thigh lift surgery. If the stretch marks are red of pink in color, our laser treatments may be able to reduce the pigmentation to make the stretch marks less visible.
Dear Dr. Whiteman,
I had total body liposuction two weeks ago. I stayed the same weight during my first week after surgery, but I’m up three pounds from my pre-op weight in week two and I am experiencing some swelling. Can you recommend anything that can help reduce the swelling and prevent further weight gain?
It’s important to remember that liposuction is NOT a weight-loss procedure. Liposuction gives patients better body contour and a shapelier silhouette, but is not meant to help you lose pounds. I do understand that seeing the scale move upward from your pre-surgery weight after having fat removed can be discouraging. That’s why I tell patients to avoid the scale during their first month after surgery. During this month, the body is in healing mode from surgery stress which can cause it to retain water (which could translate to increased pounds). Once the body realizes you are fine, the water weight should come off. Maintaining a balanced diet moving forward and following your doctor’s prescribed post-op instructions will also help you on the right track toward a healthy recovery. Additionally, wearing a compression garment on the treated areas following liposuction will help reduce swelling and allow your new body shape to heal evenly and smoothly.
Dear Dr. Whiteman,
I recently had Radiesse® hand rejuvenation treatments injected in my hands for the first time. The injector told me to massage my hands twice each night. Is this really necessary? Will the results of my treatment be dependent on my massaging?
The main reason I encourage massaging the hands after Radiesse® hand rejuvenation treatment is to help smooth out bumps that can form after the injections are administered. Massaging helps make sure that the depressed portions on the back of the hand are adequately covered by the Radiesse® solution, so the veins and tendons appear less noticeably.
I hope I was able to bring some light to these subjects. If you have a question of your own, we encourage you to contact me, Dr. David Whiteman at Southern Plastic Surgery today. Southern Plastic Surgery offers complimentary consultations to patients seeking guidance on how cosmetic surgery can help them achieve their aesthetic goals. You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter & Google+ for additional information and updates.