FAQ

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTION

Do you have questions about the surgical procedures, treatments or services that we offer?

Below is a list of some frequently asked questions, but please feel free to call our office if you need additional information. We are always pleased to assist you.

What is plastic surgery?

Plastic surgery is a specialty dedicated to the enhancement of the face and body. For those who wish to improve their appearance, cosmetic surgical procedures offer patients the opportunity to reshape physical features and improve their self-esteem.

Who is a candidate for plastic surgery?

The best plastic surgery candidate is someone with realistic expectations and an understanding of the limitations set by medicine, technology, and each patient’s own body. Good candidates have a strong self-image, and well-developed reason for pursuing a plastic surgery procedure. They are looking for improvement of a physical trait, knowing that while this positive change may enhance their self-image, it will not change people’s perception of them. Dangerous motivations for plastic surgery would be purely doing it to gain popularity, or attempting to reverse recent life crises.

Is there a “right” age to pursue plastic surgery?

There is no ideal age to have cosmetic surgery. The time to have an elective procedure is when the desired change will justify the time, effort and the cost involved. Another factor to take into consideration is the potential length of time to enjoy the benefits. For example, if an individual has a facelift earlier in life, the rewards of this surgery can be enjoyed for a greater period of time.

There isn’t any overarching rule as to the right age for plastic surgery. In fact, the appropriateness of a certain procedure should be determined more on a case by case basis, looking at the individual’s unique body type and aging process. Of course, there are age tendencies for certain procedures. Facelifts generally are not performed on patients under 30, as mini-lifts or laser procedures might be suggested instead, but this is not a rule. Otoplasty, on the other hand, is appropriate for adults or patients as young as 5 years old.

What is the difference between cosmetic and reconstructive surgery?

Cosmetic plastic surgery is performed to enhance or change a healthy, normal, functioning part of the body. Nothing but the patient’s desire for physical improvement necessitates cosmetic plastic surgery. Reconstructive surgery, however, is intended to correct a physical abnormality caused by a birth defect, disease or tumor, physical trauma, or infection. The goal of reconstructive surgery may be to restore function or to achieve physical normality.

Is plastic surgery covered by insurance?

When the plastic surgery procedure is being performed for cosmetic reasons, insurance will not be involved. When the surgery is necessary for reconstructive purposes, however, it may be partially or fully covered by insurance.

Can I finance my plastic surgery procedure?

Sure. Most plastic surgeons work with patient financing groups and will provide you with an application to fill out at the consultation. Many banks provide financing for elective procedures as well. Plastic surgery is something that is more and more often financed, which has helped it become more accessible to everyone.

Is plastic surgery outpatient or inpatient?

Most plastic surgery procedures are performed on an outpatient basis. In some cases, usually when the surgery is very extensive or complications arise, an overnight stay might be required.

Where is plastic surgery performed?

That can depend on the surgeon. Most plastic surgeons are affiliated with local hospitals and can arrange operating room times as needed. Many carry out a similar procedure at surgical centers, while other surgeons have private surgery suites in their own office space. You’ll find that many plastic surgeons fit into all or most of these categories, and offer options to each patient. They would then help you choose your surgery location based on comfort, safety, scheduling issues, and sometimes geography issues (which surgery location is closest to home, etc.).

How much pain is involved in plastic surgery?

Each plastic surgery procedure carries a different level of discomfort, and requires different methods of anesthetizing. In most situations, the patient’s preferences for safety and comfort, as well as personal pain threshold, can help determine what type of anesthesia will be used. Very minor, non-invasive surgeries might involve a topical anesthetic, while minor invasive surgeries may call for local anesthetic or local combined with sedation. In more involved surgery, general anesthesia is usually used.

How long will my results last?

Depending on the type of procedure, some results can last for many years, although there are no guarantees. Although cosmetic surgery can enhance or improve upon your appearance, it cannot prevent the natural course of aging or sagging of the skin or tissue.

What kind of anesthesia is used?

Drs. M. and J. Patel perform surgery under most types of anesthesia: local anesthesia, intravenous sedation (“twilight”), general anesthesia and regional anesthesia (nerve blocks). The method of anesthesia used is based on the patient and surgeon’s preference. Most cosmetic procedures require intravenous sedation or general anesthesia. Patient safety is our first priority and therefore most of these cases are performed in the hospital setting under the supervision of a Board certified anesthesiologist.

Will I be able to breast feed after breast enlargement surgery?

Yes. Breast augmentation should not affect your ability to breast feed.

Are there risks involved in breast augmentation surgery?

Every surgical procedure entails some risk. Those associated with this type of surgery are infection, changes in the sensitivity of the breast, and scar contracture. These and other complications rarely occur and can usually be avoided. Thousands of women undergo breast augmentation successfully each year and are very satisfied with their outcome.

What type of implants do you use for breast augmentation?

Our office can offer both saline and silicone breast implants as possible options for augmentation. The saline implants (filled with sterile saline solution) used for breast augmentation surgery are available in both round and teardrop shapes. They also come in both smooth and textured styles. Dr Patel will discuss which implant type would best give you the results you are seeking.

Do the implants have to be changed after several years?

No, as long as there are no problems with the implants, they should not have to be replaced. We use implants that are warranted for 10-20 years depending on the company used.

What if the implant ruptures?

Today’s saline implants are more durable than ever. Although risk of rupture is extremely small, if this should happen, the implant deflates as your body absorbs the saline. There is absolutely no health hazard should this happen. The implant can be easily replaced with minimal discomfort. The implants used by Dr. J. and Dr. M. Patel have a warranty by the manufacturer who will usually replace the implants and in some cases will give you monies towards the cost of the replacement.

My breasts sag but are not large. What can be done?

If the sagging is not severe, a “nipple lift” can be performed. The excess skin is removed after making an incision around the outside of the areola (the pigmented skin around the nipple). The resulting scar is confined to the area where the pigmented skin meets the normal skin at the edge of the areola. In cases of more severe sagging, a procedure similar to breast reduction may be performed by removing skin only – not breast tissue – to result in a more youthful shape. Breast lifting is an excellent alternative to breast implants for many patients.

What is Power Assisted Liposuction?

Power Assisted liposuction uses a power cannula to facilitate movement in the tissue, whereas the surgeon manually manipulates the cannula in more traditional liposuction procedures. The benefits include less body trauma on the patient, which promotes quicker recovery and faster healing.

I don’t like the tip of my nose. What can I do?

If you like your profile and the tip of your nose is too wide, prominent, projects too much or droops, it can be corrected. Rhinoplasty is an excellent procedure for the nasal tip when it droops with age.

Am I ready for a face-lift?

Skin and facial tissue that sag along with aging can give you an appearance of tiredness or anger even when you are feeling happy and energetic. Jowls and drooping skin around the neck cause you to appear heavy. With facial rejuvenation, you appear rested, healthy and more youthful. The idea is to look better, not different. Often a mini-lift can be performed instead of a full face-lift. The mini-lift is limited to the lower portion of the face, correcting jowl and neck problems, while the traditional face-lift includes the upper part of the face as well. Some patients opt to combine a face-lift with other procedures, such as eyelid surgery, or skin resurfacing to achieve a full effect.

Will I look natural after my surgery?

The techniques used by our physicians try to create a natural, non-surgical appearance. Every effort is made to improve your appearance in the most natural view.

When can I go back to work?

The length of time for recuperation after plastic surgery varies depending on the procedure. Most patients will require assistance for a day or so, and then will be able to care for themselves. We will discuss with you in detail your postoperative care and recovery instructions. The techniques offered today allow patients to return to work fairly soon following surgery.

When can I begin to exercise?

Depending on the procedure performed determines when a patient may resume physical exercise. All patients are encouraged to start a slow walking routine and hold off on anything more strenuous until after consulting with their doctor.