Is Plastic Surgery Right for You?

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Who doesn’t want to look younger, thinner, and prettier? With psychotherapy really what you need?

“Plastic surgeons do their best when they evaluate a prospective patient to see whether what they want is realistic or if there is an underlying emotional problem driving the need for the surgery,” says New York plastic surgeon Lawrence Reed, MD.

One such problem may be Liposuction or removal of fat may pose special challenges.

“If a patient comes in who see-saws their weight — 50 pounds up and 50 pounds down — and they want liposuction, I make sure they tell me about nutrition and exercise habits because liposuction is just one moment in time and they have to be able to maintain the weight loss after surgery,” Casas says.

“If I remove two to three pounds of fat from their abdomen and they gain 20 pounds, I can’t predict where the weight gain will go,” she says.

Carniol has this to add: “Most Americans are overweight,” he says. “Liposuction does not replace weight loss and it isn’t going to make you thin, but we can improve contours at your current weight,” he says. “If the outside of your hips have extra bulges and it really affects the way their clothes fit, liposuction can help your clothing fit better and may drop a size and look prettier — and that’s a good thing.”

The bottom line? If you are considering plastic surgery, “be sure that the procedure you are asking the doctor to do will meet your goals,” Casas says, “Make sure that the surgeon you choose is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) and a member of ASAPS,” she says.

Published May 20, 2003.