Call Us Now!

PHONE: (828) 526-3783 | TOLL-FREE: (877) 526-3784

209 Hospital Dr #202
Highlands, NC 28741

Facebook IconGoogle Plus IconTwitter IconRealSelf IconYoutube Icon


Will Liposuction Give me a Flat Stomach?

Will Liposuction Give me a Flat Stomach?

Liposuction is performed to eliminate stubborn fat from one or more areas of the body including the stomach. The stomach is one of the most common areas in which excess fat accumulates, so it is one of the most popular areas for liposuction. A little “extra padding” in other areas, like the buttocks or hips, can give the body nice curves. Belly fat, not so much. In this area, fat is nearly always undesirable. While liposuction can be a solution, it is appropriate only for specific problems. Here, we answer what many patients want to know about liposuction for a flat tummy.

Types of Fat

Fat accumulates in two areas in the abdomen: subcutaneous fat between the skin and muscle, and internal fat including visceral fat around the internal organs, and liver fat. We all have at least a little of each. How much one has is determined by several factors, including age, genetics, and diet. Subcutaneous fat is the squishy fat that you can pinch between your fingers. This is the type of fat removed during liposuction surgery. The other fat is not pinchable. It sits behind the abdominal wall, inside the abdominal cavity. Internal fat is not removed with liposuction. The only way to get rid of it is through diet and exercise.

It is important to know which type of fat you have so you can approach approving your abdomen the best way possible. While liposuction can help you look slimmer and shapelier from thinning the superficial fat layer, it cannot touch the visceral fat that may be causing  your appearance. Visceral fat is also considered unhealthy because it can press on internal organs. You can generally tell the difference by laying on your back and determining where your muscular abdominal wall is. If it is flat, then the fat is external. If it it not, then you have internal fat. If your problem is visceral fat, you should make necessary lifestyle changes that will support your health as well as your results from abdominal liposuction.

Can You Achieve a Flat Stomach with Liposuction?

Some patients may be able to achieve a flat stomach with liposuction alone. Studies suggest that the best results are achieved with a combination of strategies. Diet can enhance the effects of this procedure by minimizing or preventing the accumulation of unhealthy visceral fat. Because liposuction does not affect the abdominal muscle, patients can benefit from incorporating targeted abdominal exercises into their weekly exercise routine. Liposuction completes the process by removing the residual subcutaneous fat.

There are many reasons to consider liposuction. To explore your reasons and understand better where your abdominal fat is located, schedule a consultation with Dr. Buchanan at our Highlands, NC office. Call (828) 526-3783 today.

Three Post-Surgery Must-Haves

Post Surgery Preparation DiscussionIf you’ve been planning to have a plastic surgery procedure, you’re probably already looking forward to the outcome of your journey. What you may not have thought very much about is your recovery period. We understand, but, even for minimal procedures, there are things you can do to improve your chance of a good result. Here, we discuss some of the must-haves that can get you through your post-surgical recovery with more ease.

Must-Have #1 – Help

Most people who move beyond their consultation with a plastic surgeon and book a procedure will need some help after surgery. If you’re in the planning stages, do not put off the necessary arrangements. Not doing this can set the tone of your recovery as a stressful one. You should have someone who can drive you home, and do the cooking, cleaning, childcare, and pet care at least for the first day when any stressful activity can increase bruising or other problems. Additionally, you may need someone to help take care of you, depending on your procedure. Remember, everyone needs help now and then. Soon, you will be fully recovered and back to taking care of everyone else.

Must-Have #2 – Home Preparation

Home remedies are items we usually think of keeping on hand to treat minor problems. One of those is ice. Ice packs can be applied for about 20 minutes at a time to soothe swelling and soreness. It is beneficial to have two. This way, one is always ready. Another is a way to raise the head at night if you are having anything in the head or neck done or to raise the hand or foot if that is where you will have the procedure.

Must-Have #3 – Patience

The final must-have that we want to suggest is that you need to have patience as you recover from whatever you have. You may have some swelling and bruising that last for several days or weeks. Usually, these diminish a great deal within the first week after surgery. However, even mild swelling, which can linger for a few weeks, can obstruct the final results you’re so anxious to see. Be patient. Once the swelling has fully resolved, you’ll have years to enjoy your result.

Is this the year you put your cosmetic goals on the front-burner? Call (828) 526-3783 to get the ball rolling.

Zerona or Liposuction? Get to Know the Pros and Cons of Each!

Fat reduction is a body-contouring treatment that is sought by many adults. Historically, fat reduction was achieved with excision surgery and, for 30 years, liposuction. However, innovative technologies have made it possible for us to reduce  fat without surgery. This technique also has certain benefits. If you’re noticing one or more areas on your body where fat seems to be holding on tight, you may be interested in comparing liposuction to the nonsurgical body contouring treatment we use in our Highland, NC office, Zerona.

Zerona

Zerona is an FDA-cleared body contouring device that sculpts large general areas by reducing the fat within the cells. It works by emitting cold laser energy that penetrates into the cells, opens pores in the cell walls, and emulsifies the fat within the cells. This allows the liquid fat to move into the interstitial space where it can be picked up and eliminated through the lymphatic system. In clinical studies, this cold laser technology reduced inches from patients’ hips, thighs, and waists.

Liposuction

Liposuction is a minimally invasive surgical technique that uses a thin canule moved under the skin to literally suction the fat cells and fat from an area. It does require numbing the area or general anesthesia. Recovery is rapid, with most people able to return to most activities within a day or two.

Pros of Zerona include:

  • The noninvasive procedure does not require anesthesia
  • Treatment is painless
  • No downtime is needed
  • Fat cells shrink naturally, resulting in smooth, uniform results
  • Natural fat loss occurs over a few weeks

Cons of Zerona include:

  • Fat cells can enlarge after treatment if healthy habits are not implemented and maintained
  • Results vary from person to person; one may lose a few inches only while others lose more

Pros of liposuction include:

  • Suitable for large and small areas of fat, including under the chin
  • Fat removal is permanent
  • Liposuction is known for fast, successful results, especially for stubborn localized fat

Cons of liposuction include:

  • Small incisions are necessary
  • Some type of anesthesia is necessary
  • Risks such as infection, asymmetry, lumps, and bleeding exist, though they are minimal when done properly
  • There is some post op discomfort
  • Residual fat cells can enlarge if a healthy lifestyle is not maintained but the area will never be like it was

Your best body is within reach, even if diet and exercise have not produced your ideal results. To learn more about our body contouring treatments, call (828) 526-3783.

Exploring Nonsurgical Fat Reduction

Anyone who has ever tried to lose body fat knows how difficult it can be to do without a lot of help. Eating the proper foods and exercising regularly are good and necessary for optimal health. They aren’t always the ticket to the slim body contours a person wants, though. At some point, many people hit a plateau that they can’t seem to overcome. Furthermore, fat loss does not happen uniformly, frequently from inherited tendencies so some areas of the body may reduce better than others. This is why there has been such a strong interest in surgical liposuction and nonsurgical fat reduction in recent years.

Examples of Nonsurgical Fat Reduction Body Contouring

Historically, body contouring has been achieved with liposuction and other shaping procedures like abdominoplasty. Now, we have several ways to reduce areas of excess fat without surgery. Common examples of nonsurgical fat reduction include:

  • Injectable lipolysis. This is better known as Kybella, the injectable treatment that breaks down fat cells under the chin with deoxycholic acid. Though we have used Kybella, we find it more uncomfortable, more unpredictable, and slower to achieve results than liposuction and have abandoned it.
  • Many people know cryolipolysis as CoolSculpting. This method of reducing fat works by freezing fat cells, causing crystals to destroy them. The body flushes these cells over several weeks. This, however, is quite uncomfortable and has a tendency for the removed fat to rebound
  • Laser lipolysis destroys fat cells by heating them, leading to destruction. This, however, is more of a surgical procedure than regular liposuction.
  • Radiofrequency lipolysis also heats fat cells through the skin. We have found it minimally reliable.
  • Unlike other forms of fat reduction, Zerona disrupts fat cells using low-levels of cold-laser technology. This energy causes the fat cells to release the stored fat, is totally painless and somewhat more reliable than the other non-surgical modalities. This is what we use for our patients.

As you can see, each of these treatments works through unique technologies and techniques. Individual results can vary within any one of these modalities. Most forms of nonsurgical fat reduction offer some degree of gradual improvement over a few months. While none are intended for weight loss, each can result in a slimmer physique and better-fitting clothes. Also, none require downtime.

The Real Question to Ask

Many people procrastinate in getting treatment that can achieve their desired result because, with so many options, it’s difficult to know which one is right. This isn’t the real question. All you need to do is decide that you have done all you can with dietary and lifestyle modifications and that you still have some areas you would like to change. You then discuss with Dr. Buchanan how to achieve your desired outcome. Zerona nonsurgical treatment is ideal for larger to medium sized areas of excess fat. For small areas, minimally-invasive liposuction is frequently the best path to a better body.

We are here to help you find your way to your best self. To learn more about body contouring in our Highlands, NC office, call (828) 526-3783.

How We Treat The Hand: Hand Medicine and Surgery

Hand Surgery is an unusual specialty. Among other things, it is a specialty shared by General Surgery, Orthopedic Surgery and Plastic Surgery, each doing the same things. Also, though officially a surgical  specialty, care of the hand actually involves more medical care than surgery. Care can be divided into several categories, trauma care, arthritis and inflammatory processes, congenital problems, and miscellaneous problems.

Trauma Care

This can be mostly surgical initially, involving repair of cut or injured tendons, muscles, nerves or vessels. However, many injuries do not involve transection of a structure and require only observation and retraining. Even initial surgical repairs require more follow up than most injuries elsewhere because of the necessity of retraining the brain. Many initial repairs may require only minor surgery to achieve later function. Retraining is achieved through cooperation of the patient, a specially trained hand therapist and the doctor.

Arthritis & Inflammatory Processes

This is probably the largest group of problems and the one with the least actual surgical procedures. Rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis are well known problems, but other processes like psoriasis, gout, and autoimmune disease can also cause similar symptoms. Part of all the arthritides is inflammation of the synovium, the tissue surrounding the joints. This tissue also surrounds the tendons and other structures in the hand and arm and can become inflamed without joint problems. Common examples of this is tenosynovitis, trigger finger, De Quervain’s, and, even, carpal tunnel and other nerve compression syndromes. Though many of these, including carpal tunnel, are generally considered surgical problems, medical treatment is actually best.

Congenital Problems

Most of these are, indeed, surgical, to correct the congenital problem. Though Dr. Buchanan did a large numbers of these while at Children’s Hospital in Oklahoma City, he believes these problems generally need to be treated by those who do so frequently.

Miscellaneous

These are almost all other problems that can occur in the hand and upper extremity. Many of these, such as Dupuytren’s contracture have gone from usually surgical to frequently medical. In the case of Dupuytren’s, an injection into the contracting band instead of cutting it essentially melts the scar, releasing the contracture.

The Center for Plastic Surgery & Hand Care

In addition to plastic surgery, Dr. Buchanan is board certified in hand surgery and taught it for many years. He still cares for many patients with hand problems. If you have a problem with your hand or upper extremity, call the Center for Plastic Surgery at 828-526-3783 to learn more or for an appointment.

Why Consider Facial Fat Transfer To Rejuvenate the Face & Add Volume This Year

Part of the aging process, we have learned, is the loss of volume across the mid-face. Volume loss also occurs at the temples and on the lips. This is one of the reasons why the lower face starts to look wider and saggy as we get older. In recent years, research has discovered that the best way to rejuvenate the face may not be to perform facelift surgery (at least not on its own) but to restore volume using some type of biocompatible substance. Off the shelf fillers do this with temporary ingredients like hyaluronic acid. Facial fat transfer is the technique patients choose when they want permanent results or need significant volume added.

What is facial fat transfer?

Facial fat transfer is the minimally-invasive procedure in which cosmetic concerns are corrected using fat from your own body. Skilled surgeons now also use fat transfer techniques to add or restore volume to areas of the body such as the buttocks and the breasts. More commonly, fat cells are used to give the face a better contour, to fill deflated or thin lips, and to smooth deep creases around the nose and mouth and under the eyes

The treatment is performed in the office using local anesthetic and mild sedation, when needed. There are three parts to the technique:

  • Harvesting fat from a part of the body where you have an excess using liposuction. Common areas include the abdomen and the thighs. If desired, donor area can also be contoured.
  • Purifying fat cells. To add volume to the face, we want pure fat cells. To get them, we wash what is obtained via liposuction. The fat cells are then transferred to a syringe.
  • Transferring fat. The face is treated with local anesthesia before we begin injections. Then, a tiny cannula is inserted under the skin and moved back and forth. With each pass, a line of fat cells is deposited. This technique layers fat cells in a way that achieves natural-looking results.

The visit may last approximately two hours, after which you may return home to recuperate. Most people can return to normal activities by the next day.

What can you expect after increasing facial volume with fat?

After fat transfer, you may experience some swelling and bruising. Discomfort is typically minimal, although both the liposuctioned area and the facial areas treated may feel sore and somewhat tender. This is usually mild enough to manage with over-the-counter medication.

What is important to know about facial fat grafting is that 75 to 80% of the new fat cells introduced to the face are expected to survive. What is present at 4 months is permanent. Because of the loss of some of the fat cells we generally overfill the areas about 10%. Because the transferred fat cells contain stem cells, over time the overlying skin and surrounding tissue may actually improve in quality.

Dr. Buchanan performs facial fat transfer in a way that maximizes success. To learn more about this procedure, call our Highlands, NC office at (828) 526-3783.

Reasons to Schedule Plastic Surgery Treatments During the Winter Months

Center For Plastic SurgeryIt’s no secret that many people are interested in some type of plastic surgery procedure. At Center for Plastic Surgery in Highlands, NC, we make it as easy as possible for our patients. Dr. Buchanan offers proven techniques that do not require general anesthesia but that achieve outstanding results. You might be surprised at the number of surgical procedures (eyelid rejuvenation, brow lift, and more!) that can be performed right here in the office.
Knowing that your facial or body enhancing procedure doesn’t require you to “go under” or spend time in recovery, you may immediately feel more motivated to explore how you can feel your best. We’re about to offer even more reasons to consider scheduling your plastic surgery consultation right now.

  1. It’s the time of year when we hibernate. Wintertime is a great time for plastic surgery and body contouring because we’re able to recovery more discreetly. During the summer when the weather is warmer, we’re outdoors more. We want to be more active and don’t have time for recovery from cosmetic treatment. Now, while life is moving at a slower pace, is a great time to get started on your summertime beauty goals.
  2. Maximize the effects of summertime activity. If your summer months included activities like biking, hiking, swimming, or running, chances are your weight-management routine was on point. Now, a little body contouring can maximize the effort you have put into your appearance and overall well-being.
  3. It’s easy to conceal the healing body. Body contouring techniques such as liposuction may cause temporary side effects like swelling and bruising. There is no time like the winter to hide these side effects. Once you have shed your layers of winter clothing, your new body will be ready for its big reveal.
  4. Avoid the scramble. Each spring, there tends to be a bit of a scramble to get summer-ready. We tidy up our diet and get serious about exercise. Before that time comes, winter body-contouring with liposuction or other treatments can get the process started in the right direction.

Body procedures aren’t the only treatments that are great for the winter months. Facial rejuvenation can also be more discreetly handled after the holiday bustle has ended and the social calendar can be cleared for a week or two.
Discover how you can go into the New Year looking and feeling your best. Call (877) 526-3784 to schedule your consultation for surgical or nonsurgical facial or body rejuvenation.

Treat Dad to Something Unique This Year

Father’s Day presents a challenge for a lot of people. Many of us look at Dad and question what we could possibly get the man who has everything. We propose jumping right out of the traditional Father’s Day gift box and getting the special man in your life a cosmetic treatment. Studies show that surgical and nonsurgical treatments are becoming increasingly popular among men of all ages. Some want to postpone the signs of aging and some want to regain the features they once had. In either situation, we can help and are glad to do so. Here, we offer a few suggestions that will bring a lasting smile to Dad’s face.

  • Neck liposuction is a popular procedure for men who have developed a double-chin. This troubling problem creates the illusion of age and excess weight. It can also make wearing a button-up shirt uncomfortable.
  • Neck lift surgery. Whenever we hear the word “surgery,” we think along more extreme lines than we may need to. A neck lift can be a streamlined procedure that is often performed with a local anesthetic and mild sedative. This technique can be combined with neck liposuction to restore the angular nature of the jawline.
  • Injectable wrinkle-reduction. Men were a little slower to jump on the injectable bandwagon than the women in their lives but they are making up for their slow start. Men of all ages have come to know and love the rejuvenating effects they can gain with Botox and fillers. Botox reduces the deep worry and frown lines that make Dad look older and less friendly. Fillers can correct cheek hollows, shape the nose and jawline, and reduce the appearance of under eye puffiness.
  • A skin refresher. Everyone can benefit from a skin refresher from time to time, even Dad. Microdermabrasion and micro peel treatments are gentle, pampering techniques that remove dead and damaged skin cells to reveal smoother, brighter, healthier skin.
  • IPL (Intense Pulsed Light). This laser like treatment can reduce either or both spots or red from the skin.
  • Skin Care. A man’s skin is just was likely, if not more so, to have sun damage as a woman’s. Although most men think skin care consists of a little soap when bathing and, maybe, some sunblock while golfing or fishing, good skin care can make a huge difference in how he feels about himself.

Patients of our Highlands, NC office benefit from personal care and minimally-invasive treatments that get results with little to no downtime. To schedule a treatment Dad will love, contact us at (828) 526-3783.

Plastic Surgery For Your Teen – Some Pros and Cons

teen plastic surgeryBeing a teenager is especially hard these day. Bullying is rampant. Peer pressure to conform is daunting. Social media and Hollywood do their best to make teens feel inadequate. Some teens believe that plastic surgery will help. That it will somehow change how they view themselves and how they are viewed by the world. Definitive, empirical studies examining the long-term benefits of cosmetic surgery in teens are few to none. However, body image does tend to improve as teens mature and their bodies naturally change.

More than 236,000 cosmetic procedures were performed in 2012 on patients between 13 and 19. More than 75,000 of those involved the nose, breast lifts and augmentation, liposuction, and tummy tucks. Few studies have examined the risks for teens of these surgeries and additional research is needed for the more controversial procedures such as breast implants, liposuction, and genital plastic surgery.

Surgeries such as those to correct cleft palates and lips, and prominent noses and ears, absolutely benefit children and youth; these are not considered controversial. But the cultural phenomena of surgical makeovers and the increasing pressures on teens to conform to unrealistic standards of beauty make it increasingly difficult to agree on what constitutes “normal.”

The teenage body is a work in progress, a major concern when it comes to plastic surgery on adolescents. As some girls mature, the need for breast implants may diminish. The FDA has approved saline breast implants for women 18 and older; silicone gel breast implants were approved by the FDA in 2006, but only for women 22 and older, reflecting the FDA’s concerns regarding the risks of implants, and the ability of teens to fully comprehend the risks. Teenagers are often oblivious to the well-documented long-term health consequences of tanning, smoking and other risky behaviors, and would likely pay less attention to the risks of cosmetic surgery.

Are you the parent of a teen who is requesting a cosmetic surgical procedure? If so, call and schedule a consultation appointment with Dr. Buchanan to discuss your options: (828) 526-3783.

It’s The Perfect Time to Consider Looking Your Best

Time flies. Popular maxims such as living your best life and seizing the day ring oh so true.
No matter the time of your life, this may be the perfect time to refresh your image, regardless of your age or gender.

There are many plastic surgery options available today and choosing from them can be confusing at best. You know best what areas of your body and face need improving…and choosing the correct procedure often depends on your age. Dr. Buchanan can help you decide and focus on the goals you have for your surgery.

The Roaring 20’s – Just out of your teens and finally acne-free, you may want to improve the appearance of your skin using minimally invasive procedures and topical treatments. Breast augmentations, liposuction and rhinoplasty (“nose jobs”) and are common procedures for young adults.

plastic surgeryThe Thriving 30’s – You may begin to see your first fine lines and wrinkles. Minimize their appearance with a facial, a chemical peel, laser skin resurfacing or facial fillers. This is also the decade of child-bearing and your body may not be responding to diet and exercise. Consider body contouring options such as liposuction, breast lifts, tummy tucks and “Mommy Makeovers.”

The Fabulous 40’s – You just keep getting better! You may want to consider injectables, brow and eyelid lifts, neck or face lifts. All are excellent compliments to your youthful, active life style. Breast implants and lifts, tummy tucks and liposuction are popular procedures of the “fabulous forty” crowd.

The Fun 50’s – “Fifty is the new forty” and this is your decade. Brow, face, neck and eyelid lifts, laser resurfacing and deep chemical peels are popular procedures for those in this adventurous time of life.

The Savy 60’s – Men and women “of a certain age” are increasingly more likely to have facial plastic surgery procedures during this decade and beyond. If you are in good health, you can still consider a tummy tuck, liposuction and other lift procedures.

Let Dr. Buchanan work his magic – regardless of your age. Call for a consultation, today!

Call Now Button