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If your New Year’s resolution involves a flat tummy, you may think you can easily check it off the list with one little surgery. But abdominoplasty, popularly known as a ‘tummy tuck,’ is not a little surgery—and it’s not for everyone.
The Baldwin Report
You’ve seen the headlines on popular magazines about celebrities who get back their ‘pre-baby body’ within about a month or so of giving birth. Maybe some of them may just be blessed with exceptionally elastic skin; or they have time to do 500 abdominal crunches per day, as well as the ability to say no to every source of refined sugar—even at 2 a.m. when that doughnut looks awfully good while the little one is nursing.
‘Muffin top’ is a problem for many people, especially as they age. That little tummy bulge that never seems to go away, even with diet and exercise, can be maddening. Fortunately, it can be reduced via a number of cosmetic procedures, and liposuction is among the most popular.
There is more than one way to flatten your tummy. Diet and exercise works for those who need to reduce fat in general. Liposuction removes fat cells from targeted areas. Noninvasive procedures freeze fat and cause it to disappear over time. But the only thing that addresses the abdominal muscles, fat and excess skin is abdominoplasty—a tummy tuck.
After having children, women often wish to bounce back to their pre-pregnancy bodies. St. Louis Cosmetic Surgery’s solution is the ‘mommy makeover.’
Whether you want a subtle change that helps hide your age or a more dramatic transformation, there’s a cosmetic procedure for you. The menu at the body transformation buffet continues to expand, offering more choices to fit an array of desires.
What do all those technical terms mean when it comes to our bodies and the procedures that can transform them? Although by no means an exhaustive list, the following may help decipher some alien terminology—and help you become more aware of your options.
Sometimes, we just want a do-over. And when it comes to our body, we can achieve something close with procedures that sculpt and transform shape and size.
If you’ve Zumba’d and kettle bell’d yourself down a few sizes and the mirror is still not offering the reflection you’d like to see, how about body sculpting with the help of cosmetic surgery? According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, the demand for cosmetic surgery procedures increased almost 9 percent last year. And the most common areas of concern for female patients? In their practice at West County Plastic Surgeons of Washington University, Drs. Terry Myckatyn and Marissa Tenenbaum hear “breast and tummies” most often. “The No. 1 complaint, after breast size or shape, would be the stomach,” says Tenenbaum. “Especially after childbirth, women notice a pouch, extra skin or stretch marks that appeared during pregnancy and did not improve afterward.”
After her pregnancies stretched out her abdomen, this patient was tired of being asked when she was due, and not fitting into regular clothes. Through an abdominoplasty (tummy tuck), Dr. Michele Koo repaired the muscles, removing extra skin and recreated an ‘inny’ belly button. Liposuction to the patient’s waist and thighs also helped to give the entire trunk a smooth look and reduce her size to a 2 to 4.
Dr. Judith Gurley performed liposuction instead of a tummy tuck for body contouring. The 35-year-old patient lost inches and went from a size 14 to a 10.
Dr. Michelle Koo performed an abdominoplasty (tummy tuck), repairing the stretched muscles for this patient who felt like she was ‘constantly pregnant’ after two C-sections. Before the operation, she was a size 14; after, she was a size 6.
In the quest to appear as young as possible, women search out the latest in cosmetic procedures. But which ones deliver consistent results? For that, we asked three local cosmetic surgeons about the trends in their practices. Dr. Judith Gurley says in the surgical arena, breast augmentation (enlargement), breast lifts and breast reductions top her practice. For skin treatments, she finds Botox, cosmetic fillers, and laser treatments for firming and banishing sun spots also very popular. She has seen renewed interest in great skin care, topical growth factor and improved makeup formulations.
Each year at this time, we try to update some of the confusing terms that have cropped up in advertising and physicians offices over the past year. Some trends have come and gone. Other procedures have been accumulating some effective data and are stronger than ever. What do all those technical terms mean when it comes to our bodies and the new procedures that can transform them? Although by no means an exhaustive list, the following may help decipher some alien terminology and help us be more aware of our options.
More than 79,000 women a year have some form of breast reconstruction after mastectomy. Most of the time, that is either silicone or saline breast implants to recreate the breast. Newer forms of breast reconstruction, however, now make it possible to reconstruct the breast out of the patient’s own tissue, without the use of implants.
Cleft Palate Prevention…Cleft palate and lip occurs in about one in 700 newborns worldwide. This disfiguring congenital defect causes feeding difficulty for infants and later problems with speech, hearing, and dental development. Treatment costs are high and multiple surgical repairs may be needed. Researchers already know that some cases of cleft lip and palate are environmentally linked to exposures in the uterus: maternal smoking, viral infections and certain medications. In other cases, genetic variation plays a larger role. Dr. David Ornitz, professor of developmental biology at Washington University School of Medicine, led a recent study on the complex origination of cleft palate among dozens of genes in a fetus. “A cleft palate is often diagnosed late in pregnancy and treated surgically after birth,” Ornitz says. “If we understood the genetic causes of this common birth defect, we might be able to diagnose it much earlier.”
A patient of Dr. Michele Koo’s underwent a tummy tuck, along with liposuction of her hips and thighs, to smooth and tighten the abdominal area.
We’ve heard all the terms: saddlebags, muffin tops bat wings. When applied to the parts of our body we love to hate, they hang over us like, well, saddlebags, muffin tops and bat wings. We can exercise and diet until we are blue in the face, but the basic shapes stay the same. We are plagued by our skin type and heredity. Fortunately, there is a lot we can do to have the body we want.
Over the years, liposuction has evolved into one of the most popular tools in the body-beautifying arsenal. Fortunately, this method has become even safer and more useful as time goes on. Most liposuction is done under general anesthesia in controlled surgery centers by board-certified plastic surgeons.
Some of us do hundreds of crunches at the gym, watch what we eat and go to Pilates class, yet we still can’t seem to get rid of that roll of fat that forms around the middle.
A 30 year-old woman was 5 feet 5 inches tall, weighed 200 pounds and wore a size 16 when she came to Dr. Michele Koo. Two months later, following a full tummy tuck with liposuction of her hips and waist, the patient weighed 157 pounds and wore a size 8 to 10.
It’s often one of the first sacrifices a woman makes for her baby—the loss of a smooth, firm and unmarked abdomen. Stretch marks, clinically known as ‘striae,’ are a common badge of motherhood.
The good news is you’ve lost weight. The bad news is, you lost the weight all over, including from your breasts. What were once full, rounded and perky now look saggy and droopy.