The authors of Your Complete Guide to Breast Augmentation & Body Contouring are plastic surgeons and have performed thousands of cosmetic procedures. They have consulted with women like you, and understand the issues that are important to you. You'll find that they answer many of the questions you likely have, including:
• What type of implants are used—saline or silicone?
• What size implant is appropriate for me?
• Where are incision made? Where will scars be?
• Is nipple sensitivity affected by the surgery?
• What type of anesthesia is used?
• Will I have much post-surgical pain?
• What are the risks and complications with this surgery?
The authors also cover other common body contouring procedures, including tummy tucks, and liposuction of the stomach, hips, buttocks, highs, and knees. Dozens of before and after color photos help you further envision the potential results of cosmetic breast surgery. The book contains 88 color illustrations and photos, including dozens of "before and after" photos of women who have had breast augmentation and other procedures.
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Your Complete Guide to Breast Augmentation & Body Contouring
By Thomas B. McNemar, C. Andrew Salzberg, Steven P. Seidel, Jack Kusler
Addicus Books, Inc.Copyright © 2006 Thomas McNemar, M.D., C. Andrew Salzberg, M.D., and Steven P. Seidel, M.D.
All rights reserved.
Body Contouring Surgery: An Overview
When you look in a full-length mirror, are you pleased with the figure you see? Or do you notice things you'd like to change? Are there clothing styles you'd like to wear, but don't because you're not comfortable with the way your body looks? Do you wish you could do something to enhance the appearance of your physique? If so, you're not alone. Millions of Americans would like to improve their shape, and more and more of them are turning to cosmetic plastic surgery as a way to get results.
Body Contouring Procedures
What is body contouring? Body contouring refers to cosmetic surgical procedures designed to address specific abnormalities or irregularities of the chest, trunk, and extremities. Among the most common body contouring procedures for women are breast augmentation, liposuction, and abdominoplasty (also known as a tummy tuck).
What Is Breast Augmentation?
Breast augmentation is a surgical procedure that increases the size and proportions of your breasts by using breast implants. Breast-implant surgery can enhance a small bustline, correct breasts that differ in size or shape, and reshape breasts that have lost their firmness. In most cases, the procedure results in a better-proportioned figure that allows you to wear more clothing styles and, ultimately, feel more confident about yourself. According to research, women who undergo breast augmentation are happy with the results. In a 1995 study that followed breast-implant patients through the year 2000, 95 percent reported satisfaction with their breast implants five years after surgery.
What Is Liposuction?
Liposuction is a surgical procedure that can safely, effectively, and permanently remove fat from the body. The procedure is best suited to removing specific, localized fat deposits that are resistant to diet and exercise. Using this procedure, a surgeon can sculpt or reshape specific areas of the body, producing a smoother, more proportional figure.
Liposuction was first introduced to the United States in the 1980s. Since then, improvements in surgical techniques and instruments have allowed surgeons to perform the procedure more safely, to achieve better results, and to shorten the recovery period. Today, surgeons can choose from several advanced surgical techniques and instruments to help you achieve the best results.
Although liposuction can produce amazing results, there are limits to what it can achieve. Recommended guidelines limit the amount of fat that can safely be removed and the amount of body sculpting that can be accomplished. Because of this, it should not be considered a substitute for weight reduction or a treatment for obesity.
What Is a Tummy Tuck?
A tummy tuck, also called abdominoplasty, is a surgical procedure that redefines the contours of your abdomen. It can give you a flatter stomach and a more defined waistline. Like liposuction, it eliminates stubborn fat that doesn't respond to diet and exercise. But a tummy tuck goes beyond what liposuction can achieve. The procedure also creates a smoother tummy surface by removing loose skin and stretch marks. And the procedure can actually tighten stretched-out muscles of the abdominal wall (or more accurately, the connective tissues called fascia that cover the muscles), instantly creating a more defined waistline.
In addition to removing lumps and bulges, a tummy tuck may also help you shed feelings of self-consciousness about the shape of your body. Following the procedure, you may feel comfortable enough to wear a bathing suit, or you may find that you can slip into jeans you haven't worn in a decade.
Is Body Contouring Surgery for You?
If you want to regain a trimmer, more youthful-looking body or want to add a few curves to your shape, you may be a candidate for body contouring surgery. Provided you're in good overall health, remarkable improvements are possible whether you're in your twenties, your seventies, or even beyond. And regardless of whether you're tall or petite, broad-shouldered or narrow, you can emerge with a more flattering form. However, surgeons look at more than just your physical attributes when deciding if you're a good candidate for a body contouring procedure. Any qualified cosmetic plastic surgeon will also assess your expectations, your motivation, your mental health, and your willingness to take an active role in the process.
Attitude and Expectations
Having realistic expectations is one of the most important qualifications for anyone seeking a cosmetic procedure. Cosmetic surgeons stress that body contouring procedures generally result in improvements rather than perfection. If you understand and accept this fact, you're far more likely to be satisfied with your results.
Following body contouring surgery, it's common to feel a greater sense of self-confidence. And thanks to that renewed feeling, you may see some positive changes in your life. However, body contouring surgery does have its limits. A tighter tummy or bigger breasts may make your figure look more attractive, but it won't necessarily make you more likable or help you get a promotion at work. And if you're basically unhappy, cosmetic surgery won't change that.
Because of this, cosmetic surgeons are careful to weigh your motivation for seeking cosmetic surgery as well as your mental well-being. In general, a surgeon will want to make sure you're seeking body contouring surgery as a way to please yourself, not because your husband or boyfriend is pressuring you to have a procedure. Plus, surgeons will consider you a better candidate if cosmetic surgery is something you've been contemplating for some time as opposed to it being a recent whim. If you're depressed or going through a crisis, such as a divorce, a surgeon may suggest delaying any cosmetic procedures until you feel emotionally stable.
Another key element cosmetic surgeons will take into consideration when evaluating you as a prospective patient is your willingness to take an active role in the experience. Essentially, you should think of yourself as a partner in the entire process. Cosmetic surgeons consider it your responsibility as a patient to be informed, to ask questions, to communicate your goals, and to follow instructions. As a rule, the more effort you put into the process, the more likely you are to get the results you want.
When Body Contouring Surgery May Not Be for You
Cosmetic surgeons routinely turn down prospective patients for a number of reasons, including unrealistic expectations, a poor attitude, health issues, or detrimental lifestyle habits. If your expectations are unrealistic, you probably won't be pleased with your results even if your final outcome is the best possible. If you're hoping that surgery will change your life or cure your depression, you're setting yourself up for a letdown. And if you aren't willing to make the necessary effort to ensure an excellent result, cosmetic surgeons will urge you to consider other options.
Sometimes, even if your expectations and attitude are on the mark, other health conditions could prevent you from being a good candidate; these conditions include heart, lung, kidney, or liver disease; uncontrollable diabetes; connective-tissue disorders; uncontrolled high blood pressure; autoimmune diseases; and endocrine disorders.
However, having a medical condition doesn't categorically disqualify you for cosmetic surgery. Your surgeon will evaluate your case on an individual basis. As a precaution, you may be required to undergo additional testing or to obtain clearance from a primary-care physician before being accepted as a patient for body contouring.
Other reasons that may make you less than an ideal candidate include being a smoker, being overweight or obese, or having excessive sun exposure. Smoking restricts circulation to the skin, interferes with healing, and accelerates the aging process. All of these can have a negative effect on body contouring procedures. If you're overweight or obese, you may be advised to lose weight before contemplating a body contouring procedure. Excessive sun exposure breaks down collagen and elastin, accelerating the aging process, and contributing to loose skin. Because of loose skin, you may not see optimal results from certain body contouring procedures.
What's the Next Step?
If you think body contouring surgery is right for you, take the time to learn about the various procedures that interest you and make an appointment with an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon. Only a qualified surgeon can ultimately determine if you qualify for surgery, which procedures would benefit you most, and what kinds of results you can expect. In your quest for a more flattering figure, be prepared to take an active role in the process, which begins with your initial research and continues after you've achieved your new look.CHAPTER 2
Choosing a Plastic Surgeon
Choosing a surgeon is one of the most important decisions you'll make regarding breast augmentation and body contouring surgery. To ensure a safe and successful procedure that gives you the results you desire, you'll need to find a highly qualified and experienced plastic surgeon with whom you feel comfortable. Since cosmetic surgery affects your body image, your overall health, and your bank account, you should be prepared to spend some quality time on this crucial step.
Begin by asking for referrals from your family physician, gynecologist, dermatologist, friends, and relatives. With the names they give you, do some research of your own. Visit each surgeon's Web site, and call his or her office to ask for more information. By this time, you may have a pretty good feel about one or more of the surgeons so go ahead and schedule an appointment, but take note that some doctors charge a moderate fee for an initial consultation. To zero in on the right surgeon, you need to know what specific qualifications to look for, what to expect from your consultation, what questions to ask, and more.
No matter whom you ask or where you turn for advice on choosing a surgeon, you'll be advised to select someone who is well qualified. But as a patient, how do you determine if a surgeon is qualified? When checking into a surgeon's qualifications, the most important things to look for are adequate training, board certification, and experience performing the specific procedure you're considering.
Education and Training
It takes years of specialized training to become a plastic surgeon. First, a surgeon must graduate from college and then successfully complete an additional four years in an accredited medical school. An accredited school is one that meets standards set by a national authority for medical education programs.
Becoming a plastic surgeon requires several years of additional training beyond medical school. The doctor must complete a minimum of five to six years of training in a hospital, where he or she performs surgery under the guidance and supervision of senior-level surgeons. This training period is called a residency. The first few years of the residency usually focus on general surgery, and the last years concentrate on plastic surgery in particular. As the residency progresses, the surgeon's responsibilities increase until he or she is capable of assuming complete responsibility for the surgical care of patients.
By the time a doctor goes into practice as a plastic surgeon, he or she has had plenty of hands-on experience working side by side with senior-level surgeons. But a surgeon's training doesn't end there. Plastic surgeons are required to take continuing medical-education courses throughout their careers in order to keep their certification up to date.
Importance of Board Certification
You've probably heard that it's important to choose a surgeon who is "board-certified." But what exactly does that mean? Being board-certified means that a plastic surgeon has participated in a residency program in both general surgery and plastic surgery and has passed comprehensive written and oral exams. Once a plastic surgeon passes the written and oral exams, board certification is granted. Any surgeon you consider should be certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS). This is the only medical board recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) that offers certification to surgeons specializing in plastic surgery. It's important to note that there is currently no medical board recognized by the ABMS offering certification in cosmetic surgery.
Plastic surgeons who have earned board certification are required to be recertified every ten years. To qualify for recertification, surgeons must receive additional training on a regular basis. This is often achieved by participating in continuing medical education. In addition, surgeons must continually meet the moral and ethical standards set by the ABPS.
You may be surprised to discover that board certification is a completely voluntary process. It's true, surgeons aren't required to be certified to perform plastic surgery. However, choosing a plastic surgeon who meets rigorous standards set by an authoritative board may give you some peace of mind. To verify a surgeon's certification, go to the ABMS Web site at www.abms.org.
Although board certification is voluntary, having a license to practice medicine is mandatory. In order to legally practice medicine in your state, a surgeon must have a current medical license issued by the state's medical licensing board. You can check with your state's medical board for license verification.
As a final note, beware that many states allow any licensed physician to legally perform cosmetic surgery even though they are not trained plastic surgeons. For your health and to ensure a good result, it's imperative to make sure your doctor is indeed a trained plastic surgeon.
Experience of the Plastic Surgeon
While board certification provides an assurance of training and experience in plastic surgery, you also want to make sure that the doctor you select has ample experience with the procedure you're considering. First, you should look for a plastic surgeon who specializes in cosmetic surgery.
What's the difference between plastic surgery and cosmetic surgery? One way to look at it is that all cosmetic surgery is considered plastic surgery, but not all plastic surgery is considered cosmetic surgery. Plastic surgery encompasses both reconstructive surgery and cosmetic surgery. Reconstructive surgery refers to operations that are medically necessary to restore normal function or appearance to abnormal structures of the body. Cosmetic surgery, on the other hand, focuses on elective procedures that are performed primarily to reshape and enhance the appearance of normal features of the body. If you're seeking a cosmetic procedure, such as breast augmentation, liposuction, or a tummy tuck, you'd be wise to narrow your search to plastic surgeons who specialize in cosmetic surgery.
When researching cosmetic surgeons, you should find out more about their experience level with the specific procedure you're considering. You may have heard that a good way to gauge a surgeon's expertise is to ask how many years he or she has been performing the procedure you're considering or how many times per year they perform that particular procedure. But how do you know what the "right" number is?
Unfortunately, there is no right answer to this. However, as a rule of thumb, you should look for a surgeon who performs breast augmentation or your desired body contouring procedure at least a few times a month.
Excerpted from Your Complete Guide to Breast Augmentation & Body Contouring by Thomas B. McNemar, C. Andrew Salzberg, Steven P. Seidel, Jack Kusler. Copyright © 2006 Thomas McNemar, M.D., C. Andrew Salzberg, M.D., and Steven P. Seidel, M.D.. Excerpted by permission of Addicus Books, Inc..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
Chapter One Body Contouring Surgery: An Overview,
Chapter Two Choosing a Plastic Surgeon,
Chapter Three Body Contouring Surgery: What to Expect,
Chapter Four Your Breast Augmentation Procedure,
Chapter Five Combining Breast Augmentation with Breast Lift,
Chapter Six Recovering from Breast Augmentation Surgery,
Chapter Seven Liposuction,
Chapter Eight Tummy Tuck,
About the Authors,