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Breast and body cosmetic procedures

Tummy tuckBreast enhancement

The most frequently performed cosmetic surgery procedure in the U.S., breast augmentation can give women with small or unevenly sized breasts a fuller, firmer, better-proportioned look through the placement of implants in the breast. Women may elect to undergo breast augmentation for many different medical and aesthetic motivations, including balancing breast size and compensating for reduced breast mass after pregnancy or surgery. The procedure may be combined with others, such as a breast lift, for more satisfying results.

Implants are silicone shells filled with saline (salt water) and are placed behind each breast, underneath either breast tissue or the chest wall muscle. The procedure lasts one to two hours and is typically performed with general anesthesia, although local anesthesia combined with a sedative is also possible. After surgery the patient’s bustline may be increased by one or more cup sizes.

Breast reduction

Large breasts may cause physical and mental discomfort and can even harm the women who have them – the size and weight of large breasts can result in self-consciousness, improper posture, pain in the back and neck, indentations from bra straps, skin rashes, breathing problems and skeletal deformities. Breast reduction surgery is usually done to provide physical relief from these symptoms. Performed under general anesthesia, the two- to four-hour procedure removes fat and glandular tissue and trims resultant excess skin to produce smaller, lighter breasts that are in a healthier proportion to the rest of the body. Breast reduction surgery is not recommended for women who intend to breast-feed, since many of the milk ducts leading to the nipples are removed.

Breast lift

A breast lift, or mastopexy, is performed to return youthful shape and lift to breasts that have sagged as a result of weight loss, pregnancy, loss of the skin’s natural elasticity or simply the effects of gravity. The procedure can also reduce areolar size (the dark skin surrounding the nipple) and it can be combined with breast augmentation for added volume and firmness. Breasts of any size can be lifted, but results last longest when they are originally small and sagging. Mastopexy may be performed in a hospital, an outpatient surgery center or a surgeon's office-based facility. It is usually done under general anesthesia and lasts from one to three hours.

Post-mastectomy

Modern surgical technology makes it possible to construct a natural looking breast after mastectomy (breast removal) for cancer or other diseases. The procedure is commonly begun and sometimes completed immediately following mastectomy, so that the patient wakes with a new breast mound. Alternatively, reconstruction may begin years after mastectomy. There are several ways to reconstruct the breast, both with and without implants. Your surgeon(s) should work with you in deciding which procedure is best. Breast reconstruction has not been proven to affect the recurrence of cancer or other diseases, chemotherapy or radiation treatment.

Body procedures 

Liposuction 

One of the most popular cosmetic surgery procedures is liposuction. Liposuction sculpts the body by removing undesirable fat from areas such as the abdomen, waist, hips, buttocks, thighs, knees, chin, cheeks, neck and upper arms that have not responded to diet and exercise. Local or general anesthesia may be used, and the procedure can last anywhere from one to five hours depending on the amount of fat being removed.

There are several different methods surgeons use when performing liposuction, including tumescent liposuction, the super-wet technique and ultrasound-assisted liposuction (UAL). In all types, a tiny incision is made in as inconspicuous a place as possible; a cannula (small tube) then breaks up the fat layer and suctions it out.

Tummy tuck

Abdominoplasty is a surgical procedure that helps to flatten and shape the abdomen and waist by removing excess fat and skin and tightening muscles. The best candidates are in good physical condition with pockets of fat or loose skin that haven’t responded well to diet and exercise.

Abdominoplasty can also be useful for women with stretched skin and muscles from pregnancy, although results from the procedure will diminish if they continue to bear children. The procedure takes approximately two to five hours and can be performed with general anesthesia or local anesthesia with a sedative. Recovery time ranges from two weeks to a few months. With a balanced diet and regular exercise, results are long-lasting. Abdominoplasty can leave a permanent scar stretching between the hips. However, it should be low enough for even a bikini to conceal it.

Body lift

The body lift is performed to remove excess skin and sometimes also fat from the torso and upper legs. It is a complicated procedure that can take three to seven hours under general anesthesia. A difficult recovery period of four to six weeks is normal. The procedure offers an improvement in appearance for patients who have lost significant amounts of weight due to childbearing, diet, exercise or bariatric surgery or who have loose, inelastic skin for other reasons. The procedure is often combined with others such as breast lifts, facelifts and arm lifts to retain a proper body proportion.

Buttock implants

If you want to enlarge or reshape your buttocks and have discovered that they do not respond to diet or exercise, buttock implants may be the solution. Buttock implants come in a variety of shapes and sizes and are made of soft silicone, which provide a firm, smooth yet natural feel. Placed away from the bony area on which you sit, implants do not affect your sitting.

Buttock implantation takes about two hours and is performed under general anesthesia. Incisions are made inconspicuously in the depression between the buttocks. It may be performed in conjunction with liposuction for a more dramatic change in contour.