Q. What is body contouring? Body contouring just means "changing the shape of your body." It can pretty much be anywhere from head to toe, but usually means either breast enhancement surgery, liposuction, or an abdominoplasty, which is commonly referred to as a tummy tuck.
Q. Who is a good candidate for an abdominoplasty, or "tummy tuck" procedure? A tummy tuck is good for women and men who are in decent shape but have loose, saggy abdominal skin and/or fat that will not respond to dieting or exercise. A lot of patients are women who have had children, or they are getting older and their stomach muscles have loosened up, causing their belly to protrude out of proportion to the rest of their body. In many cases, an existing scar, like a C-section scar, can be used for the tummy tuck incision.
Q. Who would benefit from liposuction? Liposuction is most commonly recommended for men and women of normal weight who simply want to improve their body contour. The procedure can produce excellent results for people who have deposits of excess fat that make certain body areas appear disproportionately large. Although liposuction is not a treatment for obesity, it can permanently alter body proportion and is sometimes the only way to eliminate fat deposits that do not respond to diet and exercise. Patients of any age, with good skin elasticity, will achieve the smoothest contour after fat is removed.
Q. What are the most commonly treated areas with liposuction? Pretty much anywhere you can think of. The most common areas in women are the abdomen and waist, hips and buttocks, the thighs, knees, calves and ankles. Common areas in men are of course the "love handles" and belly. Liposuction is also very effective in treating gynecomastia, which is the accumulation of fat in men’s breasts. Other common targeted areas in both men and women are the face and neck, upper arms and back.
Q. How soon can someone get back to his or her regular routine after having body contouring surgery? In general, patients who have undergone liposuction or breast enhancement surgery can expect to return to work after just a couple of days and are feeling back to normal in less than a week. Tummy-tuck patients have a slightly longer recovery time if the stomach muscles have to be tightened up during the procedure. Almost all body contouring patients return to their normal workout and exercise routine by three weeks after surgery. Most patients report minimal pain from the surgery, and a high level of satisfaction with their results.
Q. What is BOTOX® Cosmetic and what is it for?
BOTOX® Cosmetic is a natural, purified protein that relax the muscles that cause wrinkles. It is a simple, non-surgical procedure to soften or eliminate the wrinkles between the eyebrows, on the forehead, or crow’s feet. It usually lasts from three to five months.
Q. What is a BOTOX® Cosmetic injection like and is it painful?
Only a few, very small injections need to be done, and it only takes a few minutes to perform. Most patients compare the sensation to a bug bite, or almost nothing, especially when a powerful skin-numbing agent is used before the procedure.
Q. Is the procedure safe?
Yes. The BOTOX® Cosmetic protein is confined to the injected area, and does not travel through the body. As a matter of fact, BOTOX® Cosmetic has been FDA-approved for wrinkle reduction.
Q. Would someone need to take any time off from work?
Absolutely not. Most everyone goes right back to work or to their normal routine immediately after the procedure. Patients can even schedule an appointment during their lunch break.
Q. What about BOTOX® Cosmetic making your face look unnatural?
Although the results are dramatic, it will not radically change your facial appearance. The goal is to only relax specific muscles in very specific locations. It is important to make sure to seek out a qualified plastic surgeon like Dr. Kirk Potter who knows the anatomy inside and out.
Q. I see quite a bit on facial rejuvenation nowadays. What exactly is facial rejuvenation?
Facial rejuvenation is a process to maintain the optimal appearance of one’s face. This can range from just putting on sunscreen all the way to having surgery to appear more youthful.
Q. What would someone in their 20s or 30s need to consider?
This is generally when we look our best, so this is the time to think about maintaining that youthful appearance. Starting a prescription strength skin care program is a good idea, along with microdermabrasion and BOTOX® Cosmetics.
Q. What does someone in their 40s or older need to consider?
At this age, it is time to start thinking about regaining some of that lost youth. Skin care is still important, but other things may be needed, such as laser skin resurfacing, eyelid surgery, brow lift, mid-face lift, or facelift.
Q. What are the most common cosmetic procedures today?
The three most common procedures performed around the country by plastic surgeons are nose reshaping, liposuction and breast augmentation. These also happen to be some of the most satisfying procedures for patients to have.
Q. How long does a facelift last?
A facelift will usually help someone look 8 to 15 years younger and will last for about ten years, depending on the quality of one’s skin.
Q. What would you advise someone who is interested in cosmetic surgery?
It is very important to seek out a plastic surgeon who the patient feels very comfortable with after one or more consultations. Dr. Potter consults individually with each patient to determine the most effective procedure for that person. Most of the public is not aware that there are no regulations on who can perform cosmetic surgery. This makes it really important to check on your cosmetic surgeon’s credentials thoroughly before considering any type of cosmetic surgery. Dr. Potter is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, and has received comprehensive training in the full spectrum of cosmetic surgery throughout the face and body.