What is liposuction? A very common question that I am asked regularly. Liposuction is a technique to remove extra fat through very small incisions. It is a surgical procedure, however the recovery from liposuction is typically better tolerated then other excisonal surgeries. A significant part of the healing process involves wearing compression garments at the surgical site. The garment is more of an annoyance, especially during the warmer months in Charleston. The advantage of having the procedure done during the winter is that the garment is better tolerated and healing is complete before bikini season.
There are a few misconceptions about body contouring, and a lot of them relate to liposuction. The patient demonstrated in the photo is a great example of somebody who will most benefit from liposuction. She is well within her ideal body weight but is troubled by a focal excess of fat in her thighs. The first misconception is that liposuction is a means for weight loss. On the contrary, the best result from liposuction can be seen with patients who are close to, if not at their desired weight. The post operative pictures demonstrate the significant difference that can be achieved with targeted body contouring.
There are several new devices on the market that are touted to treat cellulite and some patients ask whether liposuction is just as effective. Unfortunately, cellulite does not respond to both non-invasive treatments or liposuction very well. The improvement in contour does not typically translate to an improvement in skin quality. The transient benefits of non-invasive therapies result from local tissue swelling or edema which subside with time and require ongoing treatment to maintain its effects. The effects of liposuction are lasting and do not require maintainence.
I offer Power Assisted Liposuction (PAL) to my patients. This technology differs from conventional liposuction by utilizing a special reciprocating canulae to remove fat with less tissue trauma. In turn, this can result more efficient fat removal and quicker recovery. Other problem areas with dense fibrous tissue such as gynecomastia (male breasts) tend to respond well to PAL.
Liposuction is a very effective way to treat focal areas of fat while avoiding the large incisions of other body contouring procedures. All areas of the body including the neck, arms, chest, tummy, hip and thighs are easily treated with this. Take advantage of the cooler weather, recover in comfort, and be ready for swimsuit season with a new and improved you.
Spring is here! Don’t forget to wear SUNBLOCK!
A few tips from Obagi Medical:
Make summer sun protection a habit to prevent future damage and protect your beautiful skin. Enjoy a healthy-skin summer with one of our Obagi sunscreens and keep these general sun protection tips in mind:
• Apply sunscreen 30 minutes before going outside
• Reapply sunscreen every 2 hours, and after swimming or sweating
• When outside, cover up with clothing, a hat, and UV-blocking sunglasses
Do not burn—as few as 5 sunburns doubles your risk for skin cancer
Interested in learning more about our skin care products?
Call our office today 843-573-3456
20% Off all Skincare
Virtually Pain Free Breast Augmentation
Once again, breast augmentation has become the most commonly performed cosmetic procedure. In the United States alone, over 350,000 patients underwent breast augmentation last year. This represents a five-fold increase in the past 20 years. The resurgence in popularity can be attributed to several things including the recent approval of silicone breast implants for cosmetic augmentation. Despite the increase in surgeries, most patients have significant concerns with the pain that is following breast augmentation. This fear can be major hurdle to overcome. A recent survey of patients considering breast augmentation cited a fear of significant post operative pain as the major reason for not having surgery. The painful “horror” stories told by friends and family further add to their fear. Ironically, several months after surgery, most patients will say that having breast augmentation was worth it despite the painful post surgical recovery.
Traditional methods of post operative pain control rely primarily on narcotic pain medications. These medicines are effective in alleviating pain; however, they can also have negative side effects, these include nausea, vomiting, itching and constipation. In addition, the sedating effects of the medicine can lead to inactivity which prolongs the return to one’s normal routine. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to skip the first few most painful days after surgery and enjoy the result of the breast enhancement? The old adage “No pain, No gain” no longer has to apply to breast augmentation.
A revolutionary method of pain management, a device called a pain pump, has made recovery following breast augmentation “virtually” pain free. The pain pump automatically delivers a continuous dose of local anesthesia to the surgical site thus reducing pain and the need for narcotic medications. The local anesthetic is very similar to the numbing medicines used for dental procedures. Could you imagine having major dental work without local anesthesia? Pain from breast augmentation is the result of the manipulating and detachment of the pectoralis muscle. With the pump, the local anesthetic is applied directly to the muscle and tremendously decreases post surgical pain. In addition, patients tend to take significantly less narcotic medications, eliminating side effects.
I have been using the pain pump for my breast augmentation patients over the past four years and cannot imagine performing this procedure without it. My patients are extremely happy with the results and have recommended it to others considering the procedure. The application of this pump is not limited only to breast augmentation surgery. It‘s also been beneficial when used with other surgeries that require muscle work, such as abdominoplasties (Tummy Tucks). Now patients can combine both a Tummy Tuck and a Breast Augmentation with minimal discomfort by using the pain pump.
If you’d like more information on virtually pain free surgery, schedule your consultation today by calling 843-573-3456.
Find the Plastic Surgeon That’s Right for You
Choosing your plastic surgeon is a very important and personal decision!
Below you’ll find a list of essential qualities you should look for when choosing your PLASTIC SURGEON!
Board Certification: Are they Board Certified? Are they a Plastic Surgeon?
Anyone can call themselves a “plastic surgeon.” What is the doctor’s background? Is the doctor Board Certified in Plastic Surgery or a General Surgeon, Dentist, Dermatologist, or Ears Nose and Throat (ENT) Surgeon.
A doctor may be trained in doing some aspects of cosmetic or plastic surgery. Board Certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery takes years of education, broad training, and careful testing of skills. This is a real board recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties. Dr. O is double board certified by the American Board and Plastic and General Surgery!
Not all so-called “boards” are readily recognized or as difficult to obtain. Several “Cosmetic Boards” take much less training, education, and skill but permit some to claim that “Board Certified” title.
Does your Plastic Surgeon belong to organizations?
What organization(s) does your doctor belong to and what are the requirements to belong. Many are just clubs or groups that have limited requirements to become members. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) and the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) have rigorous standards with training requirements and enforcing ethical practices. Dr. O is a member of ASPS, ASAPS, American College of Surgeons, American Society of Maxillofacial Surgeons, Charleston Medical Society, South Carolina Society of Plastic Surgeons, and Southeastern Society of Plastic Surgery.
Training and Expertise How many of these surgeries have they performed?
Dr. Sonny O has years of experience. His plastic surgery fellowship at Jackson Memorial in Miami, FL helped develop his skills for the surgeon that he is today. He has had the privilege of teaching up and coming plastic surgeons through the University Setting at both the University of Florida – Gainesville, FL and Medical University of South Carolina – Charleston, SC. His venture into Private Practice has allowed him to continue to create fine works of art through both cosmetic and reconstruction surgery. From Breast Augmentation to Abdominoplasty to Liposuction to Breast Cancer Reconstruction utilizing a unique Microsurgery approach; Dr. O has the experience and can work with you to coordinate what is best for you!
Is the doctor current on the latest surgical techniques?
Each year Dr. O attends constructive courses that helpt to keep him abreast on the latest plastic surgery techniques and procedures. This includes the new ventures into the aesthetic practice through lasers and nonsurgical techniques. Just recently he got back from the ASPS meeting in Toronto.
Surgical Sculpture by Plastic Surgeons
Can you see their work? Do they show you pictures?
Make sure to ask to see pictures or even talk to a patient that has had the procedure performed.
Plastic Surgery Facility Accreditation
Is the operating room certified?
Dr. Seung-Jun O, PC is accredited by Accrediation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC)
Plastic Surgery Patient Education
How much will you learn at the doctor’s office?
Dr. Sonny O offers a complimentary consultation to help guide you through your options as well as tailoring the procedure specifically to your needs. Typically a consultation lasts about an hour. Materials discussing your options will also be reviewed at this time and all of your questions and concerns will be answered.
Before Breast Is Removed, a Discussion on Options
After her mastectomy in April, Alantheia Pena cried for the loss of her breast. Her partner told her not to worry about the flat spot on her chest, but she could tell it bothered him when he looked away as she took off her shirt.
It was a kindly secretary at the place where she went to get her prosthesis, an artificial breast to fill out her clothing, who noticed her crying and told her that she could have her breast reconstructed, with health insurance covering the cost. Ms. Pena said her cancer surgeon had not told her.
Now a state law signed on Sunday by Gov. David A. Paterson will require New York hospitals and doctors to discuss the options for breast reconstruction with their patients before performing cancer surgery, to give them information about insurance coverage and to refer them to another hospital, if necessary, for the reconstructive surgery.
The law came about largely through the efforts of Dr. Evan Garfein, the plastic surgeon at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx who gave Ms. Pena, who will turn 48 next week, a new breast, which made her so happy she wore a bikini last month for the first time in her life.
“It gave me back my life,” Ms. Pena, who runs the H.I.V. ministry at Friendship Baptist Church in Brooklyn and lives in the Bronx, said on Wednesday. “It’s like my own breast. It’s beautiful. It’s perfect. It’s a perfect breast.”
Dr. Garfein, who specializes in reconstructive surgery after breast, head and neck cancer, said he had pushed for the law after a friend of his, Dr. Caprice Christian Greenberg, co-wrote a paper showing that poor, minority women were much less likely to receive breast reconstruction after cancer than more affluent women.
Congress guaranteed universal coverage for breast reconstruction after cancer surgery in 1998. But Dr. Garfein said that only 30 percent to 40 percent of the women who had mastectomies now received breast reconstruction.
Dr. Garfein said the number would be closer to 75 percent if more women were informed of their options. Ms. Pena, who is covered by Medicaid, had her surgery at North General Hospital in Harlem, which is defunct, but she said her doctor there had never discussed breast reconstruction with her.
One reason for the low rate of reconstruction, Dr. Garfein said, may be the lack of plastic surgeons outside of large academic medical centers, and another may be financial. Medicaid pays about $11,000 to $15,000 to the hospital, and $540 to the surgeon, according to Montefiore.
With private insurance, the reimbursement can range from thousands to tens of thousands of dollars, and some patients may have the entire cost covered, while others may have to pay 30 percent, according to Dr. Scott Breidbart, the medical director for Empire BlueCross BlueShield.
Ms. Pena is still recovering from cancer, but with her new breast, she said, “at the end of it, you see some kind of rainbow.”