Grammy Makeover Series: The Face

When we announced our brand new Grammy makeover procedure last month, there was so much we wanted to share (but there are far too many possibilities and we didn’t want to flood you with everything all at once)!  As a single, combination procedure made up of face, hand, arm, body and breast procedures, this “a-la-carte” type of tailored surgical plan helps restore a pre-child/grandchild body – so we thought we’d highlight each key part that makes a Grammy makeover so appealing to mature, female patients.  Since the face is often the first thing people notice about another person, let’s start with the surgical and nonsurgical features that can be included in your Grammy makeover facial plastic surgery plan.

When we consider facial plastic surgery, there are two ways that I can approach treatment.  As a double-board certified plastic surgeon with over 20 years specializing in facial procedures, I like to start by mapping out your surgical goals.  Are your eyelids hooded?  Has your chin accumulated pockets of fat creating a double chin?  Are the deep wrinkles of the forehead bothering you?  A facelift is often the first facial procedure that comes to mind when I talk to facial rejuvenation candidates.  A full facelift tightens loose facial skin and smoothes wrinkles mainly around the cheeks, neck and jowls (think lower half of the face) but sometimes that’s not necessarily enough, or for others needed at all, to achieve a younger look.  There are several facial procedures that focus on specific portions of the face to help provide overall rejuvenation.  The main facial plastic surgery procedures included in the Grammy makeover, beyond facelifts, are browlift, necklift and eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) – we’ll get more into the nonsurgical highlights a bit later:

GMFace

Now, to cover the other part that makes up the facial side of Grammy makeovers.  Cosmetic injectables are always topping the most popular nonsurgical facial rejuvenation procedure list.  They can do everything from temporarily relax facial muscles of the forehead (like Botox® or Dysport®), plump up the lips (Restylane® Silk) and even add volume to hollowed cheeks (with Juvéderm® as an example).  Now, we have added Kybella™ for fat reduction of the chin to our menu of cosmetic injectables.  Kybella™ is the newest, and only FDA-approved, treatment for the “double chin” that can add unwanted weight and age to a person’s face.  This cosmetic injectable uses the active ingredient deoxycholic acid, which is already naturally found in the body.   Once Kybella™ is injected in the fat below the chin, it breaks down and destroys the fat accumulating cells so they are no longer able to store fat.  Several treatments may be needed to get a younger-looking profile of the chin or they can be used post-facial rejuvenation surgery as a type of “touch-up.”

Facial plastic surgery results can last a very long time as long as you do your part to maintain (like wearing your SPF, avoiding smoking and making sure you’re eating and exercising right).  In order to do this, many Grammy makeover patients tailor a post-makeover maintenance plan to incorporate nonsurgical treatments like cosmetic injectables and laser skincare procedures to help them keep their face looking young.  We’re all going to continue aging and a lot of patients like to keep a consistent routine to push back the need for more surgery until a later time.  Just depends on your overall goals!

Next time on our Grammy makeover series we will talk about the arm and hand components, so be sure to check back regularly.  If you’re interested in learning more about Grammy makeovers, mommy makeovers, or any of the other cosmetic and reconstructive procedures we offer, we encourage you to contact Southern Plastic Surgery (SPS) at 770-622-9100 with any questions you may have.  Stay connected with the SPS and me, Dr. David Whiteman on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ for more.

What is Ethnic Plastic Surgery?

Facial plastic surgery is constantly evolving.  I say it’s ever-evolving because as a society, so are we.  Our opinion of what we consider beautiful now is a mosaic, largely attributed to a mix of worldwide travel diversity and the internet.  What we considered as ideal beauty 30 years ago is certainly not the case now, nor will it be the same 30 years into the future.  In direct correlation to shifting trends, there has also been a shift in ethnic plastic surgery procedures.  But what exactly is ethnic plastic surgery and what factors should be considered when exploring these various facial procedures?

Ethnic Plastic Surgery in Atlanta GAAs a double-board certified plastic surgeon with over 21 years of performing ethnic plastic surgery, I have seen the same evolution of patient goals occur among every cultural background; each one is different.  The reason it’s termed ethnic plastic surgery is centered largely around unique cultural identities and the vast diversity that is embodied within each culture (specifically African American/Black, Hispanic/Latino and Asian).  Each culture has distinct facial structures and features that are indigenous to that specific culture and it takes a great wealth of knowledge, in regards to the facial complexities, to be able to produce plastic surgery results that are directly in line with the patient and their goals.

Ethnic facial plastic surgery procedures have surged over the past decade as more men and women are seeking cosmetic results that cannot be achieved with makeup or over-the-counter pharmaceuticals.  For example, many of my African American/Black patients decide on a rhinoplasty to address the look of a large or flattened nose (think wider tip, flatter bridge and flared nostrils).  The main goal is to reduce the overall size, so I typically draw from several techniques to reshape the nose.  Typically, rhinoplasty involves removing cartilage or bone to create a thinner appearance.  With African Americans, the nose’s structure generally has weaker cartilage and shorter nasal bones in which we must augment the bridge to sculpt the narrower look the patient is going for.  Instead of using implants, I use a technique where I take the patient’s own cartilage and tissue from a donor area to add volume and reshape the nose.  To further augment the overall appearance, I might recommend facial fillers like Juvéderm® or Restylane® to restore lost volume and straighten the bridge (fillers can be safely injected into the tip, base or bridge of the nose, with repeated treatments to maintain final results).  In the same respect, rhinoplasty continues to vary even among Hispanic/Latino cultures (who tend to have wider bridges and bases of the nose as well as weaker cartilage) and Asians (who have thicker skin, lower bridges and a wider base).  On top of each person coming from a different ethnic background, each person also comes with a unique facial structure, all their own.

With every ethnicity, elective surgery is a choice.  The end result is to create natural-looking plastic surgery results that the patient has in mind.  There are many factors to consider when creating a patient’s rhinoplasty plan, one that accentuates their individual qualities but at the same time also focuses on maintaining cultural identity.  My job, as the surgeon, is to listen to my patient’s concerns and properly address them at surgery.  It’s not to put my “stamp” on their results because as with any ethnic representation, corrective measures should be individualized and ethnically appropriate to suit their face.  My patients, in the simplest of terms, want an improved version of themselves.  I’m just here to help them achieve that.

The face is delicate and should be handled by someone that knows the complex details to perform facial plastic surgery procedures in a safe and successful manner.  When it comes to choosing a plastic surgeon, do your homework to avoid disappointing results.  If you’re interested in ethnic plastic surgery or any of the plastic surgery procedures we perform at Southern Plastic Surgery, P.C., feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.  Stay connected with me, Dr. David Whiteman, on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and YouTube for more plastic surgery news and updates.

Raquel’s Story: Don’t Always Believe the Hype

I get to work with a lot of great patients – for some, on more than one occasion.  Being able to hear how a cosmetic plastic surgery procedure has positively impacted their lives later in life is part of the drive that keeps me motivated to help patients achieve their goals!  Today, I’d like to share with you Raquel’s story.  When Raquel first came to me nine years ago, she was interested in pursuing her first breast enhancement procedure.  “A friend of mine was also consulting for breast implants around the same time and had recommended Dr. Whiteman.  She had explained how comfortable she felt with him versus other doctors she had met with,” Raquel recently shared, “but what sold me was that Dr. Whiteman also worked with breast cancer survivors for breast reconstruction surgery.”

breast implant surgery in atlanta georgia dr david whitemanDuring Raquel’s consultation we discussed her goals and explored several different breast implant sizes and types to find the fit that worked best for her.  “I had always been flat chested, smaller than an A cup, so I had always wanted breast implants to balance me out.  Fitting into bathing suits or tops and dresses was always a problem; I never wanted anything too big, just natural,” Raquel recalled.  “Once in my 20s, I was mentally ready and went for it.”  A few years after her procedure, Raquel gave birth to her first child and experienced capsular contracture, a condition associated with breast augmentation where scar tissue forms around a breast implant causing the breasts to harden.  “I had the misfortune of having one of my breasts capsulate after my first pregnancy, which is something random that could happen for no rhyme or reason, and replacing them was the only solution.  I chose to have them replaced and both experiences with Dr. Whiteman and the hospital staff were the best.”  When we have a patient come to us with something like capsular contracture, breast revision is the procedure of choice to eliminate the scar tissue and exchange the affected breast implant.

Since her breast revision four years ago, Raquel has welcomed her second child into the family (her kids are currently 5 years old and 5 months old) and keeps busy as an active mom and wife, fitting in home projects and decorating in her spare time.  “Life after my surgery is great; my husband has no complaints!  I have been extremely happy with my breast augmentation results; they are the perfect size for my tomboyish body and it has given me a confidence boost.  I enjoy not having to worry about clothes fitting me!”

For breast augmentation patients, breastfeeding with implants is a common concern.  While it’s true that some patients may have difficulty, don’t believe the hype for discouraging breast augmentation and breastfeeding because each person is different.  When we asked Raquel how it was for her choosing breast augmentation prior to having kids and breastfeeding, she would tell you what she told us, “I had no problem breastfeeding both of my kids.  It’s been nine years since my first breast surgery and four years since replacing them and they still look as good as when I had my first surgery.”  As a double board certified plastic surgeon, it’s my job to educate my patients on maintaining their results to the best of their ability. This could mean incorporating a healthier diet and exercise plan, finding the time to have a procedure that fits into your lifestyle and discussing what’s best for you and your body long-term.  With open communication between you and your surgeon, hopefully your experience will be just as rewarding as it has been for Raquel.

I’ll be sharing more patient testimonial stories with you in the upcoming months and invite you to reach out to my office if you have any questions regarding a procedure that we perform at Southern Plastic Surgery.  Be sure to also connect with me, Dr. David Whiteman, on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ for the latest plastic surgery trends, patient features, news and information.