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  • Southern Plastic Surgery Intern Spotlight: Meet Laney

    Welcome back to our intern spotlight series where this edition we’ll dish on our latest Southern Plastic Surgery (SPS) guest resident, Laney. A native of Lawrenceville, Laney is in the home stretch of her formal training at the Mercer University College of Health Professionals where she’s focusing on becoming a Physician Assistant. Having come to us with an interest in one day joining an esteemed dermatology or plastic surgery practice (we selfishly vote for the latter choice), Laney has really found her knack working with our patients and has seemed to genuinely love every minute of her time learning through hands-on practice and combining the hard work she’s put in so far. Before Laney left, we had her share some of her fondest memories with us and open up on where she hopes to go once she’s officially a graduate, here’s what she had to say:

    Southern Plastic Surgery Intern Spotlight: Meet LaneyWhat made you choose a career in medicine? It’s like a puzzle. Every day presents new problems to be solved. Each patient is different, and the field is always changing and advancing. It’s challenging, exciting, and rewarding!

    What’s your favorite memory? When Dr. David Whiteman sent me to the penalty box. He asked me a question in the operating room (OR) that I couldn’t answer, so I was sent out to the nurse’s station (the penalty box) to look up the answer. Then I returned to the OR to teach everyone about the information I had found.

    What’s been the biggest challenge? Probably being open to criticism. I think most people in the medical profession are very driven, type-A people. We are motivated to be the best at what we do. Sometimes I have to swallow my pride and remember that I am going to be wrong, and it’s ok!

    What skills have you learned that you think will be most valuable in your medical field?  I think knowing how to relate to each of my patients and  make a surgical plan to meet their needs will be important regardless of which specialty I choose to pursue.

    What’s the best thing about interning with Dr. Whiteman? He is such a good mix of personality traits. He is really laid back, but completely invested in helping me become a better provider at the same time. He is demanding but also very forgiving.

    Do you have a personal motto?  Improving requires you to go outside your comfort zone. If you’re not being challenged, you’re probably not growing.

    If you didn’t practice medicine, what would you do professionally instead? Ice cream taste tester.

    Hobbies: Reading, hiking, soccer, sewing, and refinishing furniture.

    Fun Fact: I attended college at both Georgia Tech and the University of Georgia. I met my husband at Georgia Tech, but we cheer for the Dawgs during football season!

    Favorite weekend activity in Atlanta: Taking my beagle to the park or hiking.

    The office is never quite the same whenever we have to say goodbye to any of our extended SPS team members, but we are enthusiastic that Laney will do great no matter where she ends up. Having skill and expertise is always important but it goes beyond that. The relationships that you are able to nurture with your patients set certain medical providers apart – it’s our belief that the passion you embody and exhibit towards your patients are the type of additional qualities that make overall great providers and Laney will undoubtedly fit the profile when she starts to make a name for herself within the medical community. Stay tuned in the upcoming weeks for more installations in our intern and patient spotlight series, and if you’d like to share your own personal plastic surgery story with other readers, don’t hesitate to contact Southern Plastic Surgery so we can help get you started!

    What’s the Difference between a Mommy Makeover & Grammy Makeover?

    Having options is great because in my opinion, it reduces the sense of restrictedness when having to pick among several things that we may truly want. Once women reach the point in their life when they’re finished with pregnancy/childbirth, or after years of waiting to finally decide to reclaim their youthful body from top to bottom, this is the ideal time to consider more comprehensive procedures. Two of the top most popular procedures among the 30 and over crowd (but keep in mind it’s not exclusive to this group by any means) has become the Mommy Makeover and Grammy Makeover procedures. Most notably known for combining multiple procedures into one procedure, these two offer great benefits for helping patients attain a younger-looking appearance, but what’s the difference between a Mommy Makeover and Grammy Makeover?

    What’s the Difference between a Mommy Makeover & Grammy MakeoverMommy Makeover

    Mommy Makeover got its name because it focuses on common areas of the body that physically change from the effects of pregnancy, childbirth, and weight gain/loss. This procedure combines breast and body contouring procedures and patients can choose from:

    • Breast Augmentation – to increase the overall size of the breasts using breast implants
    • Breast Lift – to reduce excess skin and fat from drooping breasts and raising them to a higher, more proportionate, position on the chest (can also be combined with a breast augmentation)
    • Liposuction – to permanently remove accumulated fat cells and refine the shape of the midsection, thighs, chin, arms, and buttocks
    • Tummy Tuck – to remove excess skin and fat of the abdominal region, and also re-tighten muscles that have weakened or separated during pregnancy

    Grammy Makeover

    With maturity comes more noticeably greater effects of natural aging and gravity that contribute to deeper wrinkles, perpetually tired-looking appearances, under-eye bags, sagging skin, and more. For this reason, a Grammy Makeover extends beyond the four procedures mentioned above for the Mommy Makeover – this time, combining nonsurgical and surgical options for the face, breasts, and body. In addition to breast augmentation/lift, liposuction and tummy tucks, a Grammy Makeover can include:

    • Hand Rejuvenation w/ Radiesse® – temporarily plumps up skeletal thin skin on the back of the hand instantly with the cosmetic injectable Radiesse® (results can generally last 1-2 years)
    • Browlift – smoothes the skin above/around the eyes & on the forehead by repositioning sagging eyebrows and raising upper lids
    • Blepharoplasty (Eyelid Surgery) – removes excess fat, tissue, and skin around the eyes to give a more rested appearance
    • Facelift – tightens sagging skin and smoothes wrinkles on the face (mainly around the cheeks, neck, and jowls) and/or repositions facial tissue
    • Neck Lift – removes excess fat from the chin and neck, eliminates hanging, and tightens what’s remaining for a smoother finish
    • Arm Lift – removes extra skin and fat (targeting the dreaded bat wings) before tightening remaining skin for a toned appearance
    • Fat Transfer – uses liposuction to remove fat from a donor site (typically the abdomen, thighs, or buttocks) that is purified and re-injected into areas of the body that have lost volume, such as the face and buttocks

    There are options for how you’d like your groceries bagged, which gas station you’ll fuel up at, what hair color you’d like to choose, and so much more – so why shouldn’t the same inclusion apply to plastic surgery? Not every cosmetic plastic surgery procedure allows the same type of customizing freedom like a Mommy Makeover or Grammy Makeover, but the appeal of being able to hand select the procedures that will go into your final plastic surgery results are something many patients really appreciate knowing they have the ability to do. If you’re interested in learning more about Mommy Makeover, Grammy Makeover, or any of the other facial, breast, and body procedures performed by me, Dr. David Whiteman, don’t hesitate to contact Southern Plastic Surgery today.

    The Power of PAL (Power-assisted Liposuction)

    Liposuction has consistently remained one of the most popular cosmetic plastic surgery procedures for men and women who wish to re-contour localized parts of their body. Even with the introduction of alternative body contouring treatments like SculpSure™ nonsurgical fat reduction, liposuction ranks among the top three most sought after procedures. There are several different liposuction techniques board-certified plastic surgeons can use to target accumulated fat cells, but today, I want to talk about fighting unwanted fat with PAL (Power-assisted liposuction).

    The Power of PAL (Power-assisted Liposuction)In 2015 alone, the reported number of liposuction procedures jumped 5% with over 222,000 procedures performed just in the U.S.* – and ranking it second just behind breast augmentation. Starting with the basics, traditional liposuction patients typically treat areas that have become resistant to exercise and healthy eating like: thighs, love handles, abdomen, chin, buttocks, etc. Utilizing the tumescent liposuction technique, which uses an injected anesthetic fluid to make fat removal smoother, quicker, and safer, a small incision hidden within the natural contours of the body is made to allow a very thin tube (called a cannula) to reach the fatty tissue. It’s with the help of the cannula that I’m able to manually suction the fat out effectively.

    What is power-assisted liposuction (PAL)?

    Power-assisted liposuction (PAL) uses a special mechanical cannula that creates rapid vibrations within the layers of the fat. The vibrations break up the fat cells and make it much easier to suction out affected cells from the treatment area. The benefits of PAL include:

    • Allows more precise excess fat removal which lead to better liposuction results
    • Can sculpt once harder to reach areas like the inner thighs, male breasts, and around the belly button + harder to suction, more fibrous fat
    • Micro-movements let me target specific areas of fat without damaging the surrounding tissue
    • Quicker treatment times – means less time you spend in the operating room and the faster you get to rest easy in your own home
    • Less bruising
    • Reduced recovery time

    What else can power-assisted liposuction (PAL) be used for?

    Using a patient’s own harvested fat during cosmetic procedures has opened the doors for more ways to augment the body (specifically the face, breast, and buttocks) in recent years. I personally have been interested in using power-assisted liposuction beyond body contouring and have found this technique to be particularly advantageous during fat transfer procedures. I’ve found it can provide great benefits when used during Brazilian Butt Lifts and have even developed my own technique that has attracted worldwide attention. This technique not only reduces the amount of pressure and damage to the fat cells, which results in potentially improved survival when added to its new donor site, but also has been proven to reduce a patient’s operation time by as much as 45 minutes to an hour.

    As board-certified plastic surgeons, we are constantly researching new techniques and implementing those that help increase not only a patient’s safety, but their happiness with their results. Patients that are physically and mentally sound, have small amounts of localized fat, and aren’t seeing toned results, despite eating properly and staying active, make good candidates for power-assisted liposuction. The best way my patients can keep their svelte look after their liposuction procedure is to keep this reminder in mind: once I remove the fat cells, they’re gone forever – but that doesn’t mean fat cells can’t accumulate in other surrounding areas if you experience significant weight gain. Liposuction is not a weight-loss solution and requires your active participation in leading a health and wellness-conscious lifestyle if you want to get the most out of your liposuction results.