Jeffrey M. Kenkel, M.D., FACS
Is it more difficult to recover from a tummy tuck to be done now than from a breast reduction (performed five years ago)?
I had a breast reduction five years ago with an easy recovery. I am now scheduled for a tummy tuck and was wondering if I can expect the same type of recovery or will it be worse. I guess what I am asking - is it harder to recover from a tummy tuck vs a breast reduction?
I think tummy tucks can be more challenging than many of the procedures we do in plastic surgery. A breast reduction, in my experience, is a fairly quick recovery with most patients transitioning off pain medicine in the first week. A tummy tuck is more invasive and requires more recovery and time to get back to normal activities. It involves some of the core muscles which slow your recovery. If you have any questions see your board certified plastic surgeon who is an ASAPS member.
J. M. Kenkel, MD
After a circumferential body lift four months ago I've experienced slow wound healing complications - is this normal?
I had a circumferential body lift four months ago and am experiencing slow wound healing complications. I had an area of tunneling at the incision line, packed daily, healed now. Not long after, two "new" tunnels appeared, one anterior at the incision line, and one located at the umbilicus. The tunnel at the umbilicus appeared to have "tissue" starting to protrude out which I've tried to pack back in. Could this tissue be umbilici? Is this normal - can it be repaired?
Lower body lifts are very big procedures that stress our healing capacity. Combine this with patients that normally run malnourished and healing can be an issue. At 4 months, usually incisions should be pretty well healed. Reasons to still have issues may include poor nutrition, sutures spitting (some patients react more to sutures), and other medical problems. Things should continue to get better but on occasion minor issues like this can occur. See your surgeon and don't be afraid to ask him/her questions about what you can do to help get you healed. Plastic surgeons who are ASAPS members have expertise and experience dealing with cosmetic surgery.
J. M. Kenkel, MD
I have always been bigger but recently had dropped from 226 to 160 (I'm 5"3 and 26) and I plan on losing at least 10 more pounds. I have deflated boobs from having 3 kids and excess skin on my stomach, upper thighs and arms. I also have pelvic prolapse that I'm getting fixed along with reconstruction down there. Is there an easier way to tighten up my body without the cost of having to get all this extra skin cut off? The cost only worries me because of how much I want done, but I fear my only option is to reduce skin.
First and foremost, congratulations on your weight loss. Unfortunately when you were bigger in size you permanently effected your skin which causes it to thin and lose its elasticity ( ability to recoil). Because of that, excisional surgery may be your only option.
There are a few nonsurgical skin tightening devices out there but currently I do not feel they can improve skin like you are suggesting.
It is best that you see an ASAPS member. They are board certified in plastic surgery and can evaluate you and determine what your options are.
I had laser resurfacing for acne scars resulted in pigmentation so doctor then treated me with another laser IPL. Months later I got 2 treatments made my skin worse. My face now is damaged my forehead is dry dull with a lot of fine lines across it. Is this normal why is my skin with fine lines its been 5 months they don't go away. I moisturize all day. I need help? thank you
I am sorry to hear you are having problems following your laser resurfacing. Without seeing you it is always hard to know exactly what is going on. Pigmentation following and skin treatment can occur and is more common in patients who are a bit darker in skin color. We often pretreat patients who are at risk for pigmentation with a bleaching agent.
Depending on what laser was used, it may result in different outcomes. It shouldn't cause your skin to be dry and have lines however. It would be important to know what skin care products you are using including what cleanser and sunblock. I would suggest seeing an ASAPS member who can assess your skin possibly with their aesthetician and see if they can turn things around for you.
My thighs are huge and I want to have a thigh surgery what do you recommend?
When we evaluate patients for any body contouring procedure there are several things to consider. First, is your weight stable and are you actively embracing a healthy diet and exercise regimen? These are critical to successful surgery. I always tell patients that 50% of the result is what I do and 50% is what the patient does ( meaning following an appropriate diet and exercise program). Once this has been established preoperatively your plastic surgeon will examine your skin and how much fat you have to determine what would be the best procedure for you. Liposuction? Thigh lift? Combination of both? Once this is done your plastic surgeon can sit down with you and determine if you are a good candidate and establish realistic expectations with you.
Remember to see an ASAPS member which ensures that your plastic surgeon is board-certified and specializes in cosmetic surgery.