Dr. Wigoda’s Notes: Liposuction Vs. Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty) – What’s the Difference?

As the Florida economy warms up, so is the demand for beach body plastic surgery procedures such as lipo and tummy tucks.  Fort Lauderdale plastic surgeon, Dr. Paul Wigoda, warns patients to do their homework first, learning the risks and potential results. Last year, the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery reported almost 9.5 million cosmetic procedures; with Liposuction being the second most popular choice for women.

“People need to educate themselves on the difference between cosmetic procedures such as tummy tucks versus liposuction,” said Dr. Wigoda, plastic surgeon and Chief of Plastic Surgery at Broward General Hospital.

Liposuction and tummy tucks are procedures performed to contour the body. While they both involve removing excess fat, they accomplish different things.

Liposuction

Liposuction, also known as lipoplasty, is a surgical procedure that involves making small incisions where the fat is to be removed using thin, hollow tubes called cannulas to suction the fat out. Typically, the area is anesthetized using a combination of lidocaine and epinephrine. The person may elect for local or general anesthesia. There are different types of liposuction including ultrasonic, laser assisted, power assisted, and traditional suction assisted. Which one is used often depends on the surgeon’s preference and experience.

Liposuction surgery may be considered to treat areas of excess fat in the stomach, buttocks, hips, love handles, saddlebags, thighs, calves, ankles, breasts (including male breast enlargement), back, arms and neck. Liposuction is equally effective in both men and women.

Good candidates for liposuction

  • If you have areas of fat deposits that are out of proportion with the rest of your body and do not go away with diet and exercise –sometimes referred to as “diet resistant fat”
  • Areas with minimal amounts of excess skin (Liposuction removes fat not skin) and good skin elasticity

Tummy Tucks

Abdominoplasty will enhance your body contour by making your abdomen firmer and flatter. You may find that you feel more comfortable in your clothing and are more confident about your appearance

Good candidates for Tummy Tucks

If you have

  • If you have excess or sagging abdominal skin
  • A protruding abdomen that protrudes out of proportion to the rest of your body
  • Abdominal muscles that have been separated and weakened
  • Excess fatty tissue that is concentrated in your abdomen

In this procedure, a long incision is made in the lower abdomen, just above the pubic area. The abdominal muscles are tightened, excess fat is removed, and excess skin is trimmed away. Tummy tucks, also called abdominoplasty, are great for men and women who have loose sagging abdominal skin, weak abdominal muscles, and excess fact that has settled under the skin around the stomach.

While you can achieve dramatic changes in your appearance, including a change in your dress or pants size, you won’t necessarily lose a significant amount of weight using these methods. If you are looking to lose weight, then it is best to follow a healthy diet routine of diet and exercise.

Tummy tucks and liposuction can be regarded as complementary procedures that, combined with other healthy lifestyle choices, can help you look and feel your best.

In brief:

Tummy Tuck vs Liposuction

• Though both tummy tuck and liposuction are surgical procedures to get rid of excess fat, tummy tucks also address problems with loose skin and muscles.

• Liposuction may be less painful and has a shorter recovery time but will not be the ideal procedure if the primary problem is loose skin and/or loose muscles.

• Liposuction is, in some cases, better for younger patients as the results tend to be better when the skin is firm and elastic while tummy tuck can be suitable for patients of all ages

• Tummy tuck is preferred when there is loose skin or muscles, while for persons who have concentrated areas of excess fat, liposuction is more appropriate.

Finding Dr. Right

Finding Dr. Right is just as important as avoiding Dr. Wrong says Fort Lauderdale plastic surgeon  Dr. Paul Wigoda. When researching a plastic surgeon or cosmetic surgeon, there are several key factors that should be taken into account in your decision-making process. You need to choose a surgeon that is right for you, your personal needs and expectations. You want to ensure that you have an unparalleled outcome both aesthetically and personally, as your doctor becomes your “beauty partner,” enhancing your appearance physically and emotionally.

One of the first places to begin is with family and friends: who can they recommend? What were their outcomes? Take a moment to speak with your current medical professionals. Who can they suggest and why?

Eight Tips to Finding Dr. Right for Plastic Surgery

1. Know the lingo
Doctors can now become weekend “certified” in many different types of procedures and have created their own terms which are NOT recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties. Many doctors understand that cosmetic surgery is big business, big dollars and want market share. “Cosmetic Surgeon” and “Anti-Aging Specialist” are two terms that have been coined by the industry, yet are unrecognized by the ABMS. You might even notice your  OB-GYN is now doing Botox.

2. Advertising does not buy credentials
In most cases, a good doctor does not need to have major advertise campaigns on billboards or radio stations– it is word of mouth that drives their business. That is not to say a doctor should not let his potential patients know about his awesome track record through testimonials and sharing his expertise with the media as a means to educate the public. Paid print media does not make a doctor qualified.

3.  Get different opinions
Meet with several doctors to discuss your plan and your options. It can be overwhelming but knowledge is power.

4. Stay away from the online forums
Often times the patient reviews are not actual or authentic. Many times doctors write the testimonials under assumed screen names. Be wary. Legitimate testimonials can typically be found on Google reviews, YouTube, Yelp, etc.

5. Be realistic about the recovery
Some doctors will downplay the recovery time. Know what to expect in real terms. You may be able to go back to work in just a few days, but will you want to? Today’s recovery time in many cases can be much easier and quicker when in the right care, but keep in mind surgery is surgery so have realistic expectations.

6. Review online and offline images
Keep in mind that some doctors have a fine-tuned finesse with Photoshop. If all of the after pictures look more like Joan Rivers, then run. Look at the details, carefully and with a critical eye. Does the surgeon over-operate or under-operate. Be careful and don’t just assume that the photos have not been retouched. None of Dr. Paul Wigoda’s pictures are enhanced or use Photoshop.

7. Your weight
When thinking about a facelift for example, many doctors will not want to perform the procedure on an obese person as there is only so much that can be lifted or tightened. These results will impact the surgeon’s reputation and if it does not look perfect, it is not a positive reflection on their skills. In addition, they are also concerned about the heart health and wouldn’t want to lose a patient on the table. Take care of your weight before you begin seeking surgical opinions.

8. Scheduling
Make your appointment and get started with your journey towards plastic surgery or cosmetic surgery or non-surgical cosmetic services such as Botox or fillers.

Dr. Paul Wigoda is Chief of Plastic Surgery at Broward General Hospital and has a private practice offering plastic and reconstructive surgery in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Note: Parts of this article originated in Departures Magazine January 2012 issue.

Medesthetics Magazine Says Dr. Wigoda is Social Media Savvy

Most businesses today are well aware of the benefits of social media in terms of brand building, enhancing your Internet presence, increasing web traffic, creating a community, becoming known as an expert  and capturing leads, all of which will result in an increase in your bottom line. Dr. Paul Wigoda, is no stranger to the world of social media says MedEsthetics, terming him as “social media savvy.”

In September of 2011, Fort Lauderdale, Florida plastic surgeon, Dr Wigoda launched a Facebook sweepstakes campaign to help increase his “likes.” The campaign ran for a period of two weeks, enticing his audience to join his online community to be entered to win a $250 gift card for use toward a future nonsurgical procedure; 10 runners-up received Victoria’s Secret gift cards ranging from $10 to $50.

For more information or to schedule a FREE consult, please click here and fill out our online form. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Painless Breast Implants by Dr. Wigoda in Florida

As demand for breast implants rises in Florida and beyond (a whopping 296,203 breast augmentations were performed on American women in 2010), Dr. Wigoda’s signature painless breast implant procedure has similarly risen in popularity among Florida women.

Thanks to Fort Lauderdale plastic surgeon Dr. Wigoda, getting a breast implant has now become virtually painless. On his Painless Breast Implants website www.painlessbreastimplants.com Dr. Wigoda has gathered testimonials of many women who took the plunge and couldn’t be happier with their results. Last summer, one patient even blogged about the experience from start to finish.

Most Florida women can resume normal activities within a day or two after surgery and feel virtually no pain. Dr. Wigoda’s technique is very atraumatic with a quick recovery and almost no pain. Over the years, Dr. Wigoda has perfected his technique using ten-plus years of South Florida plastic surgery experience to match the correct incision and implant to each patient. Each year over 350,000 women have breast augmentation surgery in the U.S. and Dr. Wigoda offers potential patiends behind-the-scenes access via his Facebook Page, YouTube Channel and Twitter feed.

Florida Tummy Tuck Talk: Plastic Surgery Advice from Dr. Paul Wigoda in Florida

Dr. Wigoda sees patients who are bothered by their stomach every day in his Fort Lauderdale plastic surgery office. Most request information about liposuction and Tummy Tucks, also called abdominoplasties. Dr. Wigoda takes care to differentiate between the two procedures, pointing out that liposuction merely removes fat, while tummy tucks are actually three procedures in one:

  1. Removes fat
  2. Removes excess skin
  3. Tightens muscles

When considering getting a tummy tuck, it is crucial to consider your surgeon’s credentials, facility and reviews. Other key considerations:

  • A tummy tuck procedure takes longer than liposuction.
  • The tummy tuck recovery period is longer than that of liposuction (approx. 6 weeks)
  • A tummy tuck can be more costly.
  • A tummy tuck can leave longer scars.

To tuck or not to tuck? If you have good skin tone and no loose skin, you might just need liposuction. If you have loose skin that is hanging, then a tummy tuck may be more appropriate.

Fort Lauderdale Botox Tips by Dr. Wigoda

Florida Plastic Surgeon Dr. Wigoda reveals truths and myths about Botox, the most popular procedure performed by Florida Physicians in a new YouTube video.

For approximately 30 years, Botox has been used to treat wrinkles and has become a very routine procedure. The New York Times reported that 5.4 millon people were injected with Botox last year alone. Most Florida patients undergo the Botox procedure every 4-6 months.

Despite the popularity of Botox, there are still some myths surrounding its uses. Dr. Wigoda reveals the truth about several of these myths:

  • Botox is mainly used for the upper face including the upper forehead, crows feet and the glabellar area between the eyebrows.
  • In the lower face, instead of using Botox, fillers are used.
  • Botox is not a poison; however, it is made from bacteria.
  • Contrary to common belief, side-effects are extremely minimal and rare.
  • Botox doesn’t inhibit any day-to-day activities such as exercise.

In a time of recession, Dr. Wigoda says that Botox is a cost-effective alternative to plastic surgery in reducing wrinkles and preventing new ones from forming.

In addition to its common uses, Botox has been recently proven to relieve migraines. Some Florida patients get Botox every 3-4 months to relieve migraines and/or to treat wrinkles.

 

Skinny on Lipo: Dr. Wigoda’s Liposuction Frequently Asked Questions

As the heat index here in Florida continues to climb and people spend more time in their bathing suits, many Floridians are considering getting liposuction to get the body they want. Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Wigoda warns patients to educate themselves on the different types of liposuction and to do their research before choosing their Florida plastic surgeon for any procedure.

What is liposuction? Also known as lipoplasty or liposculpture, the procedure removes excess fat deposits, slimming and shaping specific areas of the body. Liposuction can treat stubborn fat pockets in several places on the body, including abdomen, flanks, back, thighs, inner knees, arms, neck and hips. Liposuction can be performed on its own or combined with other plastic surgery procedures such as breast augmentation, a facelift or tummy tuck.

Contrary to common belief, liposuction is not a weight-loss solution. The procedure was designed to treat small areas of fat. Many patients seek liposuction to remove stubborn fat deposits that linger in spite of diet and exercise.

Considering having lipo done? There are several different types of liposuction procedures:

  • Ultra-sonic liposuction
  • Smart lipo
  • Suction assisted liposuction
  • Power assisted liposuction

Dr. Wigoda recommends ultra-sonic liposuction as he believes it to be most effective in achieving your desired results. Despite the current popularity of Smart liposuction, Dr. Wigoda does not feel it is as effective as ultra-sonic liposuction and has only become a buzzword due to heavy marketing.

It is also important to know what type of doctor your surgeon is. While legally any doctor can perform a liposuction, patients should only entrust their bodies to board-certified plastic surgeons for cosmetic procedures.

Dr. Wigoda urges any patient considering liposuction to do their research and consult a Florida plastic surgeon with good credentials and reviews.

Celebrity Plastic Surgery Talk by Dr. Wigoda: Betty White Comes Clean

Fort Lauderdale’s Dr. Wigoda knows a celebrity plastic surgery patient when he sees one. Hollywood Golden Girl Betty White is the latest in a long line of celebrities to admit going under the knife – after denying it much of her career.

The 89-year-old was quoted as recently as last year saying that plastic surgery makes people “unrecognizable” and she was glad she hadn’t done it.

However, in her new memoir “If You Ask Me (And of Course You Won’t),” the star admits to having an eyelid lift in 1976, at the age of 54. While White initially “scolded” herself for getting the procedure, she admits, “now I’m glad I did it.”

“Looking at Miss White’s before and after pictures, it’s apparent that there is a significant improvement in the eye area,” says Fort Lauderdale plastic surgeon Dr. Paul Wigoda. “Other than the eyelid lift, it doesn’t appear as if she’s had any other work done.”

Dr. Wigoda also disagrees with White’s previous stance that cosmetic surgery makes people look unnatural or unrecognizable: “Plastic surgery should enhance one’s appearance, not alter it. Miss White herself is an example of a good candidate for a procedure who did her research when selecting a plastic surgeon and enjoyed optimal – and natural-looking – results.”

Cosmetic eyelid surgery, also known as blepharoplasty, was the third most common cosmetic procedure in 2010, performed on 209,000 Americans. The surgery can be performed on the upper or lower eyelid, depending on the patient’s features and the board-certified plastic surgeon’s preferences.

To learn more about blepharoplasty, or to see before and after photos, visit Dr. Wigoda’s Fort Lauderdale plastic surgery website or the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery website to avoid becoming a botched surgery statistic.

Plastic Surgery Nightmares: Dying is High Price at Discount Centers

Rony Wendrow died during a cosmetic procedure at StraxFour people have died after cosmetic surgery performed by doctors at a Strax
Rejuvenation & Aesthetics Institute since 2008 — more than at any other physician
office in Florida.

Dr. Paul Wigoda tells patients beware of discount plastic surgery centers that have
a high turnover of doctors and history of deaths. Research and safety should be top
priority when choosing a plastic surgeon.

No clue of how a patient died during a plastic surgery procedure?

Death and plastic surgery should not be in the same sentence. A South Florida
cosmetic surgeon says he has “no idea” why a patient suddenly died during a routine
procedure.

“In all honesty, I have absolutely no idea what happened. We have no clue at all,” Dr.
Harold M. Bass told local media. Bass is one of 14 independent surgeons who operate
at Strax, a local surgery center. Wendrow is the fourth patient to die in three years after
receiving cosmetic procedures at the center, reports Sun-Sentinel Health writer Bob
LaMendola
. An attorney for the center refused to comment on the incident, instead
pointing out that the death average at Strax is “lower than the national average.”

“It is shocking to hear the news of Ms. Wendrow’s passing,” says Dr. Paul Wigoda, Chief
of Plastic Surgery at Broward General Hospital. “Although there are risks associated with
any surgery, including cosmetic surgery, one death is one too many and four in three
years is nothing short of appalling. My condolences go to the family and friends of Rony
Wendrow.”

Dr. Wigoda strongly encourages plastic surgery candidates to conduct thorough
research before selecting a plastic surgeon. It’s worth noting that the rates of plastic
surgery complications, including death, are much higher at “discount surgery centers”
than in private doctors offices.

Dr. Wigoda includes a section on his website dedicated to helping patients do their
homework and has published numerous blogs on the subject including “Is Your Plastic
Surgeon Board Certified? Questions to Ask Before Plastic Surgery”
and “How to Spot
the Red Flags.”
Make sure your surgeon is a board-certified plastic surgeon, not simply
a “cosmetic surgeon.”

Making the choice to undergo cosmetic surgery is not one that should be taken
lightly. Even the most famous and experienced plastic surgeons have less than-stellar
results with patients from time to time, and occasionally have patients that experience
complications during plastic surgery. It is imperative to choose a well-qualified surgeon
that you feel comfortable with, to minimize the risk of complications.

Florida Plastic Surgeon Dr. Wigoda Speaks on Teens, Plastic Surgery and Bullying

Plastic surgery to avoid bullying? Are South Florida teens ready to go under the knife? Should we be thinking of Botox, Boobs and Nose Jobs to avoid bullying? Media outlets such as Good Morning America and The Today Show are reporting a growing number of teens requesting plastic surgery as a reprieve from bullying.

According to CDC data, one in five high school students are bullied on school grounds every year. Even future pop superstar Lady Gaga was teased about her appearance as a child: the singer recounted being taunted and thrown in a trash can on The View on Monday.

High school senior Erica Morgo tried to break her own nose after constant teasing. After the incident, her mother, Dana Manzella, decided to allow her then 15-year-old daughter to undergo cosmetic surgery.

Teasing is torture to teens. So when 13-year-old Aubrey Woodward told The Today Show she wants plastic surgery to get her ears pinned back, she said it was because, “it makes me feel really bad” when she gets teased about them.

Erica and Aubrey are among a small but growing number of teenagers who say being teased or bullied prompted them to consider or even undergo cosmetic surgery.

Ear pin-backs are one of the most common plastic surgeries for teens, along with nose jobs such as Erica’s and breast reductions. Recent data from the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery indicates that 203,308 teens went under the knife in 2009.

“While not very common, plastic surgery on teenagers can be appropriate in certain circumstances,” says Dr. Wigoda, Chief of Plastic Surgery at Broward General. “Each case has to be evaluated carefully to make certain the surgery is being done for the right reasons. For example, if a teen has very large breasts for which she not only gets teased but which make it difficult for her to exercise or participate in physical activities, or if they are causing pain, a breast reduction may be appropriate. A teen who feels very self conscious about a large nose or prominent ears, can be helped significantly with surgery with regards to their self esteem and their degree of confidence in themselves.”
When considering plastic surgery, whether for a teen or adult, it is important to thoroughly research the doctor, surgery center and risk associated with a procedure. The decision to have an elective cosmetic procedure is a serious one and should not be taken lightly. Dr. Wigoda firmly believes in building a rapport and carefully evaluating each potential patient to ensure they are a good candidate for whatever surgery they are pursuing.