Harmony and aesthetics are important elements to consider when regarding the human body. For most of us, perfect proportions don’t come naturally and depending on gender, fat is often deposited in very specific areas. Ladies frequently see it show up in their hips and thighs, while men can experience it in their stomachs and flanks. Fortunately, medical and technological advances in recent decades now allow for the easy removal of these areas of bulge so that an aesthetic balance is achieved.
While many types of body contouring surgeries exist, including everything from face-lifts to gastric bypasses, in the 21st century, liposuction and liposculpture have been some of the leading trends in the field. Liposuction involves reducing excess subcutaneous fat that is difficult to get rid of through diet and exercise. The advances that have been made in liposuction surgery allow for less down time, better results when it comes to scarring, and more overall comfort for the patient. From techniques to equipment, the technology available today to patients and surgeons aids in the removal of fat that in previous decades would have been quite difficult to address. One of the best ways that I have found to perform this surgery is with ultrasonic equipment. This procedure employs the use of high-pitched sound waves that liquefy fat in a particular region of the body, at which time it is removed with the canula. The benefits of ultrasonic liposuction make it a great option for bringing down fat from difficult areas such as the neck and under the chin, upper arms and armpits, inner knees, calves, and ankles. The Lysonix machine is one of the most advanced ultrasonic technologies on the market right now and is ideal for patients who need a more detailed level of body contouring.
In addition to liposuction, breast lifts and breast augmentation surgeries are some of the most popular procedures governing cosmetic surgery today. In fact, recently released statistics from the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery indicate that breast augmentation surgery is the No. 1 cosmetic procedure performed in the United States. More than 355,000 breast enhancement surgeries were performed in 2008.
Much progress has been made in the evolution of breast augmentation surgery including the types of implants available, the placement of the implants, and the kind of incision that will be most beneficial to the patient. We have all heard the good news that silicone implants are back on the market after a 14-year hiatus for testing and improvements. When it comes to incisions, the “lollipop” incision is often preferred among surgeons and patients. This type of incision circles around the nipple and then goes vertically down. Another option when it comes to the placement of the incision is through the armpit, in order to avoid cutting on the breast altogether. However, performing the procedure this way is limits the implants to saline only. When collaborating with patients on the type of incision to use in the surgery, the architecture of the breast should be one of the main guiding factors in the final decision.
The placement of the implants is also important to consider. I find that inserting them under the chest muscle is most effective and delivers favorable long-term results due to the fact that the muscle covers the implants, concealing any type of rippling that could occur, and, of course, results in a more natural feel. Often, the muscles will also help hold the implant in place, preventing any type of slipping or movement that may take place over a long period of time.
Overall, the progresses of technology and society provide for a whole host of options when it comes to cosmetic surgery. Whether combining a breast lift surgery with a tummy tuck for a full “mommy makeover,” or considering liposuction surgery on those trouble spots that are genetically out of proportion, in today’s world, plastic surgery is no longer a solution for only the rich and the famous. It can offer gratifying solutions for everyone.
Dr. Kimberly Henry
350 Bon Air Road, Ste. 1
Greenbrae, CA 94904