Plastic Surgery – Body

Emerging Plastic Surgery Techniques: A Fad or Here to Stay?

It seems like a new cosmetic product, technique or device emerges almost daily — typically with great marketing fanfare. Some will become excellent additions to our treatment options. Botox®, injectable fillers and fat grafts are great examples of breakthroughs that have become proven, accepted standards. However, the majority of new treatments have proven to be ineffective or even unsafe. So, how can you, as a potential patient, know what’s worthwhile and what’s not?

What to Watch Out For

In today’s world, the media buzz tends to get more attention than good, solid facts. But when it comes to medical interventions, you want to make sure you’re looking at the science behind them. During your quest for information, watch out for some common traps.

The “Latest and Greatest” Attraction

The first thing you should be aware of is that it’s human nature to be attracted to novelty. Cognitive scientists have long recognized that people have deeply ingrained biases toward things that are new. We tend to assume that new equals better — not because there’s evidence or proof to support that, but only because it’s new. That’s why the “latest and greatest” sales pitch works. People are wired to get drawn in to this way of thinking. It’s important to understand that the majority of new treatments and products aren’t better (and can often be worse) than established, proven ones. So, when you hear about the latest “advancements,” remember to approach them with a healthy amount of skepticism.

Prestige and Profit

The second thing to consider is the profit/prestige motive. Of course, a company that makes a new cosmetic treatment wants to hype up its product and claim the most amazing results it can. Every company’s primary objective is to make the largest possible profit. And if a doctor develops a new procedure … well, that’s their “baby,” and they often can’t help but believe it’s the best. However, as a savvy patient, it’s important not to be overly swayed by glossy ads or the enthusiasm of an innovator.

Biased Reviews

Searching the internet for reviews seems like a good place to find out how well a product works. The problem is we almost never know the source of a review. I’ll share a great example. A few years ago, a fast-growing company called Lifestyle Lift was promoting its “revolutionary” new lunchtime facelift. Unfortunately, there were a number of problems with Lifestyle Lift. First of all, the procedure wasn’t new at all. It had basically been around for decades and was considered by most plastic surgeons as inferior to standard techniques. A second problem was that Lifestyle Lift paid its employees to create fake identities online to give rave reviews of surgical results and experiences. In 2009, the company admitted to creating these false reviews and was fined $300,000 by the New York attorney general. Unfortunately, people that want to make money don’t always do it ethically. That’s why you have to take a critical look at the facts instead of getting drawn in by the glitz and glamour.

How to Get Legitimate Answers

So, how do you know which new things are good, which are not, and which we just don’t have enough information about to draw a conclusion? First, approach it with a bit of skepticism — make them prove that what they’re offering is good.

You may want to begin with conducting some research online. Just be sure to go to trustworthy sites like the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery or larger rating sites, such as RealSelf.com. Then, after you do a little research on your own, schedule a consultation with a well-trained plastic surgeon who can explain all your options. And, if the treatment is new, you should consider getting a second (or even third) opinion.

During your consultation(s), be sure to ask:

    1. How much information is known about the technique?
    2. Why he or she feels one treatment is better than another?
    3. What are reasonable expectations from each procedure?

Emory Aesthetic Center

Emory Aesthetic Center offers complimentary consultations with experienced, well-trained plastic surgeons. We’ll answer all your questions about different techniques available and work with you to choose the best options for you. Schedule your consultation today.

About Felmont Eaves III, M.D., F.A.C.S.

Felmont F. Eaves III, M.D., F.A.C.S., leads the Emory Aesthetic Center as Medical Director. He is double board-certified by the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

Dr. Eaves’s leadership is apparent in his impressive accumulation of distinctions. He serves as Director of the American Board of Plastic Surgery, the board that certifies plastic surgeons nationally. Previously, he served as President of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery; he is currently a Trustee.

 

Request an appointmentor call us at 404-778-6880.

Labiaplasty

“Labia rejuvenation” may sound strange, but it can have a big impact on a woman’s quality of life — improving daily comfort, enhancing sexual satisfaction and increasing self-esteem. While you aren’t likely to hear women talk about problems with their labia as freely as issues with other parts of their body, that doesn’t mean those problems don’t exist.

What is Labiaplasty?

Labiaplasty is one of the world’s fastest growing cosmetic surgery procedures. Some women simply want to improve the look of the external vagina. Others want to eliminate chaffing, dangling or pinching of the labia minora (inner vulvar lips). The procedure involves removing excess tissue and carefully reshaping the labia minora to restore a comfortable and attractive shape and size.

Who is a Good Candidate for Labiaplasty?

While this procedure isn’t for everyone, for the right candidate, it can be life changing. You should consider labiaplasty if you want to improve the aesthetic look of your external vagina, are looking for relief from chaffing, dangling or pinching of your labia minora, or need both (functional and aesthetic improvement).

How Is Labiaplasty Performed?

The procedure is commonly performed in-office using local anesthesia, but it can also be done in an operating room using general anesthesia. Either way, you won’t experience pain during surgery. Your cosmetic surgeon will remove the excess tissue from the inner lips and clitoral hood, and strategically place your incisions to minimize scarring.

Labiaplasty usually takes about one hour, and you’re often able to go home immediately after. Your stitches will be absorbable and should disintegrate within two weeks, but you’ll need to return for follow-up appointments so your surgeon can be sure you’re healing properly.

What to Expect While You Recover

After labiaplasty, you can expect some discomfort, swelling and bruising for up to two weeks. You should lie down and keep your legs elevated as much as possible for the first couple of days to reduce swelling. And you’ll need to avoid intense physical activities for two weeks. Do not have sex, use tampons, ride a bike or go horseback riding for six weeks after surgery.

Icing the area for 15 minutes every hour while you’re awake for the first week can help relieve discomfort.

How Do I Choose a Surgeon?

Labiaplasty is a very delicate and intricate procedure that should be performed by plastic surgeons familiar with the local anatomy, anatomical variations from patient-to-patient and use of different techniques.

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons recommends you ask the following questions:

  • Am I a good candidate for vaginal rejuvenation?
  • Assuming you’re specially trained in this procedure, how much experience do you have performing it?
  • Do you have before-and-after photos that might show what results are reasonable for me?
  • Is your surgical facility accredited by a nationally- or state-recognized accrediting agency, or is it state-licensed?
  • What are the risks and complications associated with my procedure and how will any complications be handled?
  • What surgical technique is recommended for me?
  • What are my options if I’m dissatisfied with the cosmetic outcome of my vaginal rejuvenation procedure?

Emory Aesthetic Center

Considering labiaplasty? Schedule your complimentary consultation today. The skilled plastic surgeons at the Emory Aesthetic Center are committed to giving you a great experience that is private, pleasant and personal. We’ll explain your options and help you decide if it’s right for you.

About Gabriele Miotto, MD

Gabriele C. Miotto, MD, is an assistant professor of surgery in the division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the Emory University School of Medicine, and the associate program director of the Emory Aesthetic Center Fellowship program. She is fellowship trained in aesthetic and oculoplastic surgery and certified by the Georgia Composite Medical Board as well as the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and Brazilian Society of Plastic Surgery. Dr. Miotto is also certified by the National Board of Medical Examiners.

 

Request an appointmentor call us at 404-778-6880.

5 Things to Know Before Getting Liposuction

There’s a reason liposuction is one of the most popular cosmetic surgeries in the United States. It’s a great body-contouring procedure and offers immediate results. But before you jump in, you need to understand what it can and cannot do. Here are five things that you should consider as you make your decision and plan.

Facts About Liposuction

1. Liposuction Is for Shaping, Not for Weight Loss

A common misperception about liposuction is that it’s a way to “get skinny.” So, if you’re considering liposuction as a way to resolve a weight issue, unfortunately, it just doesn’t work that way. When you gain weight, the extra fat tends to spread throughout your body. Liposuction targets specific problem areas, such as love handles or a belly bulge, but it cannot effectively treat the whole body. There’s also a limit to how much fat can be safely removed at one time.

Bottom Line: Instead of thinking of liposuction as a way to lose weight, think of it as a powerful shape-changing tool that can help bring a problem area into harmony with the rest of your body. Also, remember that fat can come back, so it’s important to adopt healthy lifestyle habits to get and maintain the best results.

2. Patients Who Are at a Healthy Weight Get the Best Results

This ties in to our first point: Liposuction will give you the best results if you’re already at a healthy weight. If you get liposuction when you’re heavier than you’d like to be, your results will not be as dramatic. Studies show that patients who are happiest with the results of their body-contouring surgeries are those who have made a commitment to healthy eating and exercise prior to the procedure.

If you’re thinking liposuction will motivate you to lose weight and get you into shape, we’re sorry to tell you that usually the opposite occurs — these patients see an improvement in their appearance and wind up feeling LESS motivated to work on getting in shape.

3. The Type of Liposuction Tool Used Is a Decision Best Left to Your Surgeon

There are several “types” of liposuction tools out there. Suction Assisted Lipectomy (SAL) uses narrow tubes that are smooth on the ends to “suck out” the fat. Power Assisted Liposuction (PAL) tools are often used in areas where the fat is more firm or dense, like on the back. PAL tools use vibration, lasers or fluid to help break up and remove the fat.

Of course, all these tools are made by companies. And no surprise here — companies advertise their products. But don’t be pulled in by fancy advertising. All liposuction tools can work very well in the hands of a well-trained surgeon who is experienced in their use. So, your job is to choose a qualified surgeon who can guide you in which technique will be best for you.

4. Liposuction Will Not Tighten Loose Skin

Unfortunately, some advertisers claim their liposuction technique can help tighten skin. This is simply not true. Think of it this way: If you have a bag filled with liquid and you remove a large amount of that liquid, the bag gets looser, right? Well, your skin is like the bag and your fat is the liquid. If you remove a lot of fat from an area, your skin will likely get more lax. If you’re relatively young and have good skin elasticity, then your skin will probably “snap back” well. However, if you already have loose skin, then liposuction can potentially make the problem worse. In these instances, combining liposuction with a skin tightening procedure, such as a tummy tuck or thigh lift, can often yield amazing results.

5. The Removed Fat Cannot “Move” to Another Part of Your Body

So, what happens after liposuction? Patients are sometimes concerned that if they have liposuction in one area, the fat will “shift” to another area of their body. This myth is based on the fact that the way you gain and lose weight after liposuction can be a little different than how you gained and lost weight before it. Why? Because adults don’t make new fat cells after surgery and fat cells don’t move in the body.

So, let’s say you have liposuction that removes half the fat cells in your tummy area. What happens if you gain 20 pounds? Since there are fewer fat cells in your tummy, you’ll put less weight on there than you would have before, which means the weight will be partially redistributed to other areas. So, if you have weight fluctuations after surgery, you’ll probably gain and lose the weight more evenly. That means your “problem area” would stay more in harmony with the rest of your body. While this sounds like a relief, remember the ultimate goal is always to maintain a healthy weight.

Emory Aesthetic Center

Emory Aesthetic Center is experienced in the full array of liposuction procedures. Our expert surgeons will discuss your goals and options with you to create your best results. If you’re interested in liposuction, schedule your complimentary consultation and experience the Emory difference today.

About Felmont Eaves III, M.D., F.A.C.S.

Felmont F. Eaves III, M.D., F.A.C.S., leads the Emory Aesthetic Center as Medical Director. He is double board-certified by the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

Dr. Eaves’s leadership is apparent in his impressive accumulation of distinctions. He serves as Director of the American Board of Plastic Surgery, the board that certifies plastic surgeons nationally. Previously, he served as President of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery; he is currently a Trustee.

 

Request an appointmentor call us at 404-778-6880.

Which Type of Liposuction Is Best?

types of liposuctionLiposuction is a cosmetic procedure to remove excess fat from specific areas of your body. Everyone is different, and it can be difficult to know which liposuction technique is appropriate for you.

Liposuction may be right for you if you:

  • Are at or near your desired weight
  • Have good skin elasticity
  • Have certain areas that are out of proportion with the rest of your body, and are not improved with diet and exercise

Types of Liposuction Procedures

While everyone has heard of liposuction, many may not know there are actually several different techniques available to help you achieve your desired results.

Regardless of technique, in most cases, the fat is prepared for removal by inflating it with a balanced saltwater solution that often contains lidocaine for pain relief and epinephrine to minimize bruising. This instillation of fluid is referred to as the tumescent preparation of fat.

Suction-Assisted Liposuction

While the preparation for fat removal is fairly standard (as described above), the technique for removing the fat can vary.  The most common type of liposuction involves using negative pressure to remove excess fat from an anatomic area.

After the fat is filled with tumescent fluid, the surgeon uses a thin tube (cannula) that is connected to a suction device. The fat is broken up and removed when the surgeon repeatedly passes the tip of the cannula through the fat. Most of the time, the fat is discarded. However, if you’d like to augment volume in other areas of your body, your surgeon may use it.

A new technology, called power-assisted liposuction, uses a mechanically enhanced cannula for easier passage and more thorough removal of unwanted fat.

Laser and Ultrasonic Assisted Liposuction

Some surgeons prefer to pretreat fat with a laser or ultrasonic device. There are many varieties of these devices on the market, but they all have the same method of treatment. Electromagnetic energy, by laser or ultrasound, is delivered to the targeted fat cells. The energy is converted to heat that breaks down the fatty tissue prior to aspiration, or removal of fat. Though not scientifically proven, some believe that breaking up the fat in this way allows for a better result because there is a more thorough removal of fat and by the tightening of connective tissue including the skin.

Your surgeon can usually perform most liposuction procedures while you are awake, using local anesthetics to numb the area. However, your surgeon can decide if more sedation is needed.

In some instances, patients may be put to sleep completely in the operating room. These decisions are made based on your surgeon’s judgment.

A Nonsurgical Way to Reduce Fat: Coolsculpting®

Coolsculpting is a nonsurgical way to “freeze off the fat.” A special pad is applied to the targeted area to freeze fat beneath the skin, without affecting the skin itself. Once the fat has been frozen and crystallized from the treatment, your body slowly destroys and discards the unwanted fat cells. Most patients start to see changes within three weeks, seeing final results within one to three months. It usually takes two or more treatment sessions to achieve results similar to liposuction.

How to Choose the Right Procedure

If you’re feeling confused by all these options, there’s good news — it’s actually as simple as choosing the right cosmetic surgeon. Ultimately, your results depend on finding an expert surgeon who is skilled in different liposuction techniques and understands what results you want that leads to the most favorable outcome. So, do your homework. Check credentials. Ask to see before and after pictures from their previous liposuction patients. And just as importantly, make sure the two of you communicate clearly.

Emory Aesthetic Center

Emory Aesthetic Center offers a variety of fat-removing procedures. If you’re interested in liposuction, schedule your complimentary consultation and experience the Emory difference today.

Request an appointmentor call us at 404-778-6880.

Choosing a Cosmetic Surgery Center

View of Emory Aesthetic Center Building EntranceWhy Choose Emory Aesthetic Center? If you’ve been thinking about cosmetic surgery, you probably have a lot of questions like “Why choose Emory Aesthetic Center.” “How do I find the right doctor for me?” “How do I know it will be safe?” “What kind of procedure do I need?” Then, like most people, you’ll likely turn to the internet for answers. But is the information accurate? Who and what can you believe?

Emory Healthcare: A Name You Can Trust

Emory Healthcare is the region’s most comprehensive academic healthcare system. It’s home to highly-regarded doctors who conduct innovative research and are ranked among the top for patient care. But is Emory the right place for cosmetic surgery? Absolutely. With an aesthetic center dedicated solely to surgical and nonsurgical cosmetic procedures, how could you go wrong?

Specialized Cosmetic Surgery Team

Cosmetic surgery is what we do. When you choose Emory Aesthetic Center you get a cosmetic surgery team filled with innovators in the field. Many of our expert surgeons teach nationally and internationally and have served as leaders in regional, national and international societies. Collectively, our team has also published hundreds of contributions in journals and books about how to perform cosmetic procedures — safely.

In addition to top-notch surgeons, our entire staff — including anesthesiologists, nurse anesthetists, nurses, technicians and more — works together to provide the best care in a center that meets the highest standards of credentialing.

Wide-Array of Surgical and Nonsurgical Cosmetic Procedures

How can you know if the procedure being recommended is the best choice for you? There’s a saying, “If the only tool you have is a hammer, the whole world looks like a nail.” That’s the problem with going to a center that has limited offerings. You will only be offered the choices they are able to provide.

Body contouring is an excellent example of why it’s important to go to a center that can offer a variety of procedures. Let’s say you want to improve the look of your abdominal area. There are several surgical and nonsurgical options for different situations:

  • Coolsculpting® can reduce small amounts of localized fat deposits, without surgery.
  • Liposuction may be needed if there is a higher percentage of fat to be removed.
  • Abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) is needed to remove significant excess skin from the tummy.
  • A body lift may be needed to tighten and firm the abdomen, thighs, and buttocks of a patient who has lost a significant amount of weight.
  • Or a combination of the procedures above may be required to give the best results.

At Emory Aesthetic Center, we’re continually studying, teaching and publishing about cosmetic procedures, so we’re always on top of the newest developments. We offer the entire spectrum of surgical and nonsurgical cosmetic procedures, including cosmetic surgery, skin care, facial rejuvenation and body contouring. Our familiarity with the full-variety of techniques available enables us to guide you toward the procedure that fits you best.

Luxurious Atmosphere

At Emory Aesthetic Center, you’ll get the best of both worlds — clinical excellence and a luxurious experience. You won’t feel like you’re in a hospital. Our center is quiet and elegant and stands remote from the main campus. Our entire staff is focused on ensuring you have a great experience. Whether you’re here for a skin treatment in our Spa or surgical treatment in the operating room, we’re ready to give you the experience of a lifetime.

Request an appointmentor call us at 404-778-6880.


Choose Emory Aesthetic Center

Emory Aesthetic Center is the right choice for your cosmetic procedure. But don’t take our word for it, schedule your complimentary consultation and experience the Emory difference today.

Optimize Scars from Plastic Surgery

optimize scarsIf you’re considering plastic surgery, you’ve probably thought about potential scarring. Maybe you have scars that haven’t healed well, or maybe you’ve seen pictures, and worry that you might get the same result. While there’s a possibility of poor scarring after any surgery, the good news is that most scars created during cosmetic procedures heal well and are minimally visible.

Today, plastic surgery procedures are designed so that scars are positioned in areas that are mostly hidden. There are also surgical techniques that can give scars a better chance of healing well.

What your surgeon can do to reduce or hide scars

Position the scars well

Cosmetic surgeons take great care in positioning scars in inconspicuous areas. With rhinoplasty (nose surgery), for example, the scars are sometimes entirely inside the nose or barely noticeable between the nostrils. For breast surgery, scars can be placed underneath the breast, hidden around the areola (pigmented area surrounding the nipple) or occasionally under the arm. For a tummy tuck, the scar can be positioned low, so underwear or swimwear hide it.

Choose the right tools

The materials used to close a wound can contribute to it healing well. In some areas, removable sutures may give a better scar appearance. While in other areas, absorbable sutures (that don’t require removal) may be the better option. Sometimes, like during a face lift, for example, surgeons use surgical staples because they’re gentler on hair follicles. An experienced and skilled cosmetic surgeon will know what tools will work best for your particular situation and surgery.

Reduce tension on sutures

How a wound is closed can have a significant impact on how the scar heals. Many studies have shown that tension on healing skin incisions contributes to poor scarring. To combat this, we use techniques to control this. One common procedure is to use supportive sutures on the deeper tissues, so the tension lies well inside (where scarring isn’t visible) and the skin itself isn’t being pulled. Supportive dressings and minimizing movement that creates excess tension on the scars also helps.

What you can do to optimize scars

There are also things you can do to optimize scars after surgery.

  • Apply silicone strips, gel or ointment to your scar
  • Avoid significant sun exposure to scars during the healing period
  • Keep scars moist

Be aware, there are lots of products out there that claim to improve scars, but most don’t have much evidence to back up their claims.

If you’re prone to poor scarring

While most patients heal very well after surgery, some patients may have a genetic predisposition to develop poor scars. Although the tendency to develop hypertrophic scars (scars that heal to appear thick, elevated and red) or keloid scars (similar to hypertrophic scars, but can grow) can exist in any ethnic group, the risk is higher for individuals of African or Asian descent.

If you have a history (or a family history) of this kind of scarring, talk it over with your surgeon before embarking on surgery. They might suggest varying the procedure, using a different closure mechanism or offer adjunctive therapies to help you get the best possible outcome. And, in the case that a poor scar does develop, it can be treated with topical treatments, taping or steroid injections to improve its appearance. Or, in more severe cases, a small scar revision procedure, typically done under local anesthesia with minimal recovery, may do the trick.

Emory Aesthetic Center

Schedule your consultation today and let the skilled surgeons at Emory Aesthetic Center help you learn more about how to optimize scars after treatment.

Request an appointment

or call us at 404-778-6880.


 

Factors to Consider Before Breast Lift Surgery

breast lift blog postPregnancy, breastfeeding, aging and weight fluctuations commonly take a toll on a woman’s breasts. If you’re noticing yours are sagging or not as full as they once were, it may be time to consider a breast lift (mastopexy). Breast lifts can produce dramatic results with a relatively short recovery.

If you’re serious about it, the first and most important thing on your to-do list should be finding a skilled and experienced cosmetic surgeon. The right surgeon will listen as you describe your desired outcome and talk through all the options. Remember your body is unique—there is no one-size-fits-all procedure. Here are two important factors to consider with your surgeon:

1. What will the scars look like?

Of course, women (and their plastic surgeons) want to minimize scars whenever possible, but the procedure that leaves the smallest scar may not be the best choice for you. One of the keys to getting great results with a breast lift is to match the right scar pattern with your needs.

Types of scar patterns

There are several surgical techniques used during breast lifts that leave different scaring patterns. Some include:

“Donut” (periareolar) lift – This procedure is effective for women who have very mild drooping or who want to reduce the size of their areolas (the pigmented area surrounding the nipple). It yields the smallest scar that runs around the perimeter of the areola.

“Lollipop” (vertical) lift – This is probably the most common breast lift procedure because it addresses moderate drooping and provides more extensive reshaping. The scaring goes around the perimeter of the areola and then straight down from the bottom of the areola to the fold underneath the breast (inframammary fold)—resulting in a lollipop-shaped scar.

“Anchor” (inverted T) lift – With this procedure, the scar goes around the areola, then from the bottom of the areola to the fold underneath the breast (the inframammary fold), and finally along the fold of the breast. The anchor technique is most effective for women with significant drooping and whose breasts have slid down on the chest wall. Most commonly, women who have had multiple pregnancies (with breast feeding), who have lost a significant amount of weight, or who are having a breast reduction require this technique. Although it yields the most scarring, scars can often be placed in areas that can be hidden by bras or bikini tops.

Be careful about pushing your plastic surgeon toward a technique based solely on scar patterns though. Some techniques may not adequately address the issues you’re having. Also, remember that surgeons will always work to place scars in the least noticeable positions possible, like under skin folds.

2. Do I need implants?

Determining if you need breast implants, a lift or both, is often a point of controversy and confusion—but it’s important to think it through. One easy way to narrow down your choice of procedure is to take the size test.

The size test

You need to separate the concept of size and lift, which isn’t always easy. To help, try manually lifting your breasts in front of a mirror. How you feel about the size of your breasts when they’re lifted will guide you toward which procedure is right for you.

Just a lift – If you’re happy with the size of your breasts, or if you wish they were just slightly bigger, a breast lift is probably the right choice for you. Small implants will give you very little (if any) benefit, yet you’ll still incur the cost and potential future surgeries that can come with breast augmentation. Should you decide after your lift that you still want to add volume, you can always have an augmentation down the road. But most women are satisfied with the results of a lift alone.

Just implants – If your breasts are too small or relatively deflated (need volume) but the nipples aren’t too low, breast implants might do the trick. While it’s true that implants will give a slight lift, they will not make up for more significant drooping. Sometimes, women make the mistake of getting bigger implants to avoid getting a lift. Unfortunately, this usually results in the heavy implants sagging and the woman feeling her breasts are too large for her comfort. Often in this instance, a woman will opt to remove or replace the implants and must undergo a more extensive (and complicated) breast lift than she originally needed.

Both – Combining breast implants and a breast lift can give wonderful results. Women who wear “A-” or “B-” cup bra sizes, and who have extra loose skin but not a lot of tissue to droop, do especially well with the combined procedure. Women who have larger breasts can also get implants; however, over time, fuller breasts may “fall off” of the implant, requiring additional surgery.

Emory Aesthetic Center

If you’re considering a breast lift or implants, schedule a complimentary consultation with one of the expert cosmetic surgeons at the Emory Aesthetic Center to discuss your options.

Request an appointmentor call 404-778-6880.

Upper Body Lift: Getting Rid of Love Handles and Back Rolls

Upper Back LiftIn the world of body contouring, most of the focus over the years has been on the tummy and breasts. This makes sense since these areas tend to change the most as we age. But recently, people have been noticing the issues affecting the back of their bodies as well. I’m sure you’ve heard about lower body lifts and buttock enhancement, but are you aware of one of the most powerful and dramatic body contouring techniques available — the upper body lift?

What causes back rolls and bulges?

Due to age, weight fluctuations or genetics, many people develop laxity (sagging or loose skin) in their upper body. Sometimes the laxity occurs between the bottom of the breasts and the upper tummy, but it tends to be most obvious on the back. This laxity (and some associated fatty deposits) leads to those annoying back rolls near and under the shoulder blades. It also contributes to the “bra roll” that can be present in both men and women.

How can I get a sleek upper body?

Liposuction has been the primary strategy used to treat bulges, rolls and love handles. While liposuction makes a significant difference in the fullness of the rolls, it often does not fully address the underlying skin laxity. So, even after the rolls are improved, the skin may hang over or bulge out from under the bra. That’s where upper body lifts come in.

Upper body lifts make dramatic improvements in the back and side of the upper body. Over the past 20 years, plastic surgeons have become more aware and skilled at upper body lifts, primarily due to the growing numbers of people who’ve lost large amounts of weight either through bariatric surgery procedures or diet and exercise. People who’ve experienced massive weight loss can have profound laxity in their back, sides and breast area. However, upper body lifts are not just for patients with massive weight loss. There’s a growing number of people who are a healthy weight that have similar complaints.

How does an upper body lift work?

An incision is made across the back, connecting around the sides to go under the breasts. This allows a large amount of loose skin to be removed. Removing the excess skin gets rid of rolls on the mid-back and side “bra-roll” areas and can also lift rolls that may extend all the way to the love handles. Because the skin of the back is thick and strong, these incisions tend to heal well. In fact, it’s usually an easier recovery than a tummy tuck or lower body lift.

What about scarring?

If you’re worried about big, ugly scars, don’t be. Skilled plastic surgeons can usually position scars in the least noticeable places.

Women

Upper body lift scars can be positioned in the mid-back, where a bathing suit or bra strap will cover it.  Often, women combine upper body lifts with breast lifts or tummy tucks. For the breast lift, the scar from the upper body lift can extend underneath the breast.

Men

For men who are concerned about having a scar on their back, it’s possible to position the scar along the side of the chest, going down from the underarm. This produces significant improvement in both the bra roll and back areas, although perhaps not as much as with an upper body lift where the scar goes across the back.

Emory Aesthetic Center

If you’re frustrated with back rolls or love handles, schedule a complimentary upper body lift consultation with the expert physicians at the Emory Aesthetic Center.

Make an appointment

To make an appointment, use the link below or call 404-778-6880 to schedule a personal consultation.

Request an appointment

Target Stubborn Fat with Liposuction

miotto-gabriele-caceres-liposuctionYou cleared out the bulky sweaters and brought in shorts and flip-flops with a smile. But did you hesitate before you put your favorite bikini back in the closet? The truth is you may be at a healthy weight — downright skinny even — and still have areas of localized fat that won’t go away no matter how hard you work out. Those stubborn fat deposits that don’t respond to diet and exercise are ideal target areas for treatment with liposuction.

What is liposuction?

Liposuction (also called lipoplasty or lipectomy) is a safe and proven procedure that allows your surgeon to permanently remove unwanted fat from your innermost layer of skin and sculpt a slimmer, curvier physique.

During the procedure, your surgeon will insert a hollow instrument (cannula) through small incisions. With a controlled back-and-forth motion, the excess fat is dislodged and removed from your body.

Different surgical techniques are available and use slightly different methods for removing the fat once it’s loosened. Your surgeon may use traditional vacuum-assisted, power-assisted or ultrasound-assisted liposuction. Only a surgeon can help you decide which technique is right for you.

Liposuction can be done under local or general anesthesia depending on the areas being treated. It’s an outpatient procedure, so you can go home the same day of surgery. Since there are minimal incisions, patients usually recover quickly. Some bruising and swelling are common, but you can usually return to work and daily activities after a few days.

Which parts of my body can be treated?

Liposuction can be used for contouring almost any area of the body. Most commonly, your:

  • Stomach
  • Waist Line (“love handles”)
  • Arms
  • Thighs

But it can also be used to sculpt your neck, remove a “double chin” or reshape your breasts. The results can be dramatic, creating sleek and slim contours in the treated areas. You may even be able to have multiple areas treated in a single surgery, as long as your surgeon agrees it’s safe to do so.

Liposuction can be done by itself or in combination with other procedures to improve the overall result, such as a tummy tuck. When performed in combination with another procedure, the fat that’s removed is kept sterile and often transferred into your buttocks or breast for augmentation and reshaping of those areas, if desired. The fat can also be used on your face to treat fine lines and wrinkles. This type of procedure is called a fat transfer or fat grafting. Fat from liposuction is a natural, biocompatible and non-allergenic filler.

Am I a good candidate for liposuction?

There are a few things to consider with your doctor when deciding if liposuction is right for you:

  1. Are you at a healthy and stable weight? Liposuction isn’t a weight loss solution and if your weight fluctuates, your results won’t last.
  2. Are you in good general health? As with any other surgery, you must be in good general health before surgery is considered safe for you.
  3. Do you have good skin elasticity? Your skin must be able to retract (bounce back) once the unwanted fat is removed.

Schedule a consultation

Liposuction is a sound and effective way to help you get your body reshaped and bikini ready. Schedule a complimentary consultation with one of our expert cosmetic surgeons at the Emory Aesthetic Center.

Request an appointment

Or call us at 404-778-6880 to schedule your free personal consultation.

Your Body Contouring Questions Answered!

Body Contouring Options - Non-surgical & Surgical On March 28th, 2017, Emory Aesthetic Center plastic surgeon, Dr. Gabriele Miotto held an informative live chat on body contouring. With summer coming, many want to know how to improve the shape of their body and tighten excess or loose skin. Dr. Miotto discussed both non-surgical and surgical options – including CoolSculpting, liposuction and tummy tucks.

The live chat had a great turnout and is now available online.

Body Contouring Live Chat, 3/28/17

[Mar 28 2017, 11:48 AM] EmoryHealthcare: We are starting the live chat in 14 min. Are you, guys, ready? We see a few people online waiting and we are ready for your questions. Dr. Miotto is so excited to help all our guests today!

[Mar 28 2017, 12:00 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Welcome everyone! Thanks for joining us today for our web chat about
Body Contouring with Dr. Gabriele Miotto of Emory Aesthetic Center.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:02 PM] EmoryHealthcare: We’ll get started in just a minute. Dr. Miotto is here to answer all of your questions!

[Mar 28 2017, 12:05 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Please note that all questions are moderated before appearing in the stream, so you may not see yours appear right away, but we will do our best to answer all of your questions today.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:06 PM] EmoryHealthcare: We received some questions that were submitted in advance of the chat, so we’ll get started by answering a few of those first.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:08 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Lynn asked: “I am 5’10” and 126lb. I look skinny but have severe cellulite. I’m embarrassed to wear a bathing suit. What do you recommend?”

Dr. Miotto: If there is no weight issues, cellulite can be improved by localized leg exercising and changing your diet (no sugar, low carbohydrates, etc). Healthy life habits always improve the skin overall. Lymphatic drainage massage can have some beneficial effect if there is fluid retention in the tissues.

If the dimpling is very severe, we can perform a procedure

[Mar 28 2017, 12:11 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Anna asked: “Are there any changes to my diet that I can make to reduce my cellulite?”

Dr. Miotto: Low sugar diet can help with cellulite. If you are overweight, weight loss associated with exercise also improve the quality of skin.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:14 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Sydney asked: “Do sleep and the level of stress I have affect my weight?”

Dr. Miotto: A good night sleep is very important for balancing the body functions. It helps the body produce its hormones and can definitely affect your weight. When stressed, we tend to eat more and not to pay attention to the quality of the food we eat, so it can promote weight gain.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:22 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Tina asked: “After having two babies, I have a lower abdominal pooch that just won’t go away with diet and exercise. I’d love to get back into my bikini. What can I do?”

[Mar 28 2017, 12:22 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Dr. Miotto: After having babies, the abdominal pooch is usually caused by fatty deposits, skin laxity or muscle laxity, or even a combination of those. During the consultation, we can determine the main cause of the pooch and decide between the different procedures we do which one will be best for you. Options include liposuction, tummy tuck, Coolsculpting or a combination of them.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:23 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Tatyana asked: “I am unhappy with my stomach. I am considering liposuction. What is the recovery like?”

[Mar 28 2017, 12:23 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Dr. Miotto: Recovery depends on the amount of liposuction that we need to do but usually patients go back to work in 5-7 days.

It is common to have tenderness for the first 48-96 hours that responds well to pain medications. A postoperative compression garment is also recommended for a couple of weeks to help with healing. Mild bruising and swelling can last for a few weeks so plan to do the procedure at least 4 weeks before going to be beach

[Mar 28 2017, 12:25 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Caroline asked: “I like to eat fruit for dinner. Like bananas and grapes. And oranges. Does this habit contribute to my weight gain?”

[Mar 28 2017, 12:26 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Dr. Miotto: Weight gain can have many factors.

Eating fruits at night could contribute to weight gain. Sweet fruits like bananas, grapes, oranges have a high fructose content that functions as sugar in the body. Think about sweet fruits as desert and start your dinner with vegetables and legumes instead to balance your diet and reduce the sugar content of your overall intake.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:26 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Maria asked: “When I wear a dress, it looks like I have a muffin on my belly. I don’t like being in pictures because of it…. How can you help me?”

[Mar 28 2017, 12:28 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Dr. Miotto: Fatty deposits in the abdomen can look like a “muffin top”. Depending on your skin laxity and muscle tone it is possible to remove the extra fat with liposuction or a tummy tuck. Non-invasive fat removal using Coolsculpting could also be an option in some cases.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:33 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Kara asked: “When would one consider a tummy tuck over lipo?”

[Mar 28 2017, 12:33 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Dr. Miotto: Liposuction does not treat skin or abdominal muscle laxity, it only removes fat. So if there is an association of fatty deposits with skin laxity and/or muscle laxity a tummy tuck is the right procedure for you.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:33 PM] Guest5387: what exactly is cool sculting

[Mar 28 2017, 12:37 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Dr. Miotto: CoolSculpting® is an FDA approved treatment that works without surgery, needles, or anesthesia.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:37 PM] EmoryHealthcare: The procedure cools and freezes unwanted fat—without damaging surrounding tissues.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:37 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Once the fat has been frozen and crystallized from the treatment, the body will slowly break down the unwanted cells and dispose of them, resulting in gradual fat loss following the treatment.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:37 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Most patients start to see results within about three weeks, with final results becoming apparent within 1-3 months after treatment.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:37 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Great question, @Guest5387! Thank you.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:39 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Kelly asked: “I want to add some fullness to my bottom. What are my options?”

[Mar 28 2017, 12:39 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Dr. Miotto: A great option to add fullness to the bottom area is by transferring your own fat into the buttocks. Fat is removed from areas like abdomen, waist line, tights or back using liposuction. Then, the fat is prepared as a filler and reinjected into the buttock to increase the volume and improve the shape of the area.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:41 PM] Guest8698: Do you recommend waist training?

[Mar 28 2017, 12:41 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Great question, @Guest8698!

[Mar 28 2017, 12:42 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Dr. Miotto: That is an option for body shaping but the effects are not reliable for long term improvement. It also depends on your weight, initial body shape and exercising.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:42 PM] Guest7903: What procedures do you recommend for men?

[Mar 28 2017, 12:42 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Thank you, @Guest7903!

[Mar 28 2017, 12:42 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Plastic surgery procedures can be done for men and women alike. Liposuction, tummy tucks and Coolsculpting are frequently used to improve body contouring in men of all ages.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:43 PM] EmoryHealthcare: @Guest7903, that was a response from Dr. Miotto 🙂 Thanks 🙂

[Mar 28 2017, 12:45 PM] Guest2220: Where can I see a full list of of the services Dr. Miotto offers?

[Mar 28 2017, 12:46 PM] EmoryHealthcare: @Guest2220, Dr. Miotto does all of the facial and body contouring procedures available on the Emory Aesthetic Center’s website page here: http://www.emoryhealthcare.org/centers-programs/aesthetic-center/index.html

[Mar 28 2017, 12:46 PM] EmoryHealthcare: @Guest2220, thanks for the great question 🙂

[Mar 28 2017, 12:47 PM] Guest8162: I’m a male with just enough fat below the bellybutton to bother me. A friend who’s had cool sculpting said it didn’t work. Do you recommend another type of non-invasive procedure?

[Mar 28 2017, 12:48 PM] EmoryHealthcare: @Guest8162, Dr. Miotto says: Unfortunately, there is no other non-invasive fat removal procedure that is effective. I would recommend a small liposuction. When the fatty deposits are small it can safely be even done under local anesthesia with a light sedation or even under straight local anesthesia.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:49 PM] Guest950: Sorry if this was already asked, but do those heat based non surgical procedures work and do you recommend them?

[Mar 28 2017, 12:50 PM] EmoryHealthcare: @Guest950, Dr. Miotto is asking if you could please clarify which ones you are including in your question. Thank you.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:52 PM] EmoryHealthcare: We are so excited about your questions, everyone! We have 9 min left and 3 questions are now being answered by Dr. Miotto, so they will be posted in a minute. Please submit your question asap if you’d like her to answer them. Thank you 🙂

[Mar 28 2017, 12:52 PM] Guest950: I think it’s called thermage?

[Mar 28 2017, 12:53 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Thank you, @Guest950, Dr. Miotto will answer in just a second 🙂

[Mar 28 2017, 12:55 PM] EmoryHealthcare: We have 2 questions’ answers coming and you have 6 min left to ask yours 🙂

[Mar 28 2017, 12:56 PM] Guest761: Can I get body contouring after bariatric surgery?

[Mar 28 2017, 12:56 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Very good question, @Guest761!

[Mar 28 2017, 12:56 PM] EmoryHealthcare: @Guest761, Dr. Miotto said: “Absolutely! There are several procedures that can be performed to treat the extra skin and fat that remains after massive weight loss.”

[Mar 28 2017, 12:57 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Bella asked: “When would one consider a tummy tuck over lipo?”

[Mar 28 2017, 12:58 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Dr. Miotto: Liposuction does not treat skin or abdominal muscle laxity, it only removes fat. So if there is an association of fatty deposits with skin laxity and/or muscle laxity a tummy tuck is the right procedure for you.

[Mar 28 2017, 12:58 PM] Guest2220: Does Emory offer financing for procedures?

[Mar 28 2017, 12:59 PM] EmoryHealthcare: @Guest2220, we do offer financing through Care Credit https://www.emoryhealthcare.org/centers-programs/aesthetic-center/become-a-patient/index.html

[Mar 28 2017, 12:59 PM] EmoryHealthcare: @Guest950, Dr. Miotto said: Heat based procedures were designed to improve skin laxity of the face and body. They have some effect for mild laxity, mostly on the face and neck, but not a consistent effect for body skin laxity. They are not effective devices for fat removal.

[Mar 28 2017, 1:00 PM] EmoryHealthcare: That’s all the time we have for today. Thanks so much for joining us! As we mentioned, we’ll follow up with a blog post to answer any questions we didn’t get a chance to address today.

[Mar 28 2017, 1:01 PM] EmoryHealthcare: Thanks for your questions. Have a great day, everyone!

[Mar 28 2017, 1:02 PM] Guest950: Thanks for your time

[Mar 28 2017, 1:02 PM] Guest3275: thank you!

[Mar 28 2017, 1:02 PM] Guest5784: It says Dr. Miotto explores cutting edge technology. are there any techniques or procedures she uses that haven’t been mentioned?

[Mar 28 2017, 1:02 PM] FSUnole755: I’ve seen advertisements to Cool Sculpting and it seem like everyone is doing it. Should I be selective on choosing a person to do body contouring?

[Mar 28 2017, 1:03 PM] EmoryHealthcare: All unanswered questions will be answered in a followup blog. Thanks, everyone and enjoy the rest of your day!


About Dr. Miotto

Dr. MiottoDr. Miotto is constantly exploring cutting edge technologies to provide the best available options to her patients. She has published and presented on aesthetic plastic surgery in many national and international meetings. Her main interests include body contouring, facial rejuvenation, eyelid surgery, rhinoplasty, aesthetic breast surgery and fat grafting.

After completing medical school under a full academic scholarship at the prestigious Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Dr. Miotto trained at the Hospital de Clinicas and at Santa Casa in Porto Alegre, Brazil. She also received additional training at Emory University and completed a fellowship in Aesthetic and Oculoplastic Surgery with Dr. Clinton McCord and Dr. Foad Nahai at Paces Plastic Surgery in Atlanta. She is a “Membro Titular” of the Brazilian Society of Plastic Surgery, the highest level of credentialing for board-certified plastic surgeons in Brazil.

Dr. Miotto is committed to providing excellent care to her patients. She has a passion for restoring and enhancing beauty through surgical and non-surgical cosmetic procedures of the face and body.