Lunchtime Lipo, Lifts, and Enlargements
By Danielle Briones
Published on November 15, 2007
Looks like the latest lunchtime cosmetic procedures don't just include the less invasive wrinkle-reducing treatments we’re all familiar with - you know, BOTOX® injections, chemical peels, and microdermabrasion.
In response to the ever-growing aesthetic sensation gripping the American public, plastic surgeons have developed surgical techniques that reduce the time spent undergoing treatment in the operating room – and recovering in the bedroom!
Breast Implants in an Hour - And Go Out the Very Same Night!
A Texas plastic surgeon recently announced that he has pioneered a breast augmentation procedure that only takes 30 to 40 minutes to perform. Further, he says that women who undergo the procedure during their lunch hour may feel well enough by dinner to go out to that swanky new restaurant they have been dying to try.
"Between 80 and 85 percent of our patients go out on the evening of their surgery," cosmetic surgeon John Tebbetts, MD, was quoted as saying in the UK's Telegraph newspaper.
Dr. Tebbetts, who calls the procedure "out to dinner augmentation," says he measures women's breast skin and tissue before they undergo treatment. These precise measurements, combined with the specially designed blade that is used during the procedure, allow surgeons to curb trauma to affected areas. According to Dr. Tebbetts, these techniques reduce bleeding and injury to surrounding tissue.
Additionally, patients can undergo the operation under local anesthesia, meaning patients are awake during treatment. Dr. Tebbetts says that the lower level of anesthetic and decreased damage to the breast area allows surgeons to perform the operation – and patients to recover from it – in a shorter amount of time.
However, some consumers think Dr. Tebbetts’ approach to the breast augmentation procedure may be a ploy to sway potential patients’ decisions toward undergoing the breast enlargement procedure. And some of them believe that a breast enlargement procedure that can be performed in just 30 minutes may not be safe.
Is the ‘Rush Job’ Unsafe?
Like other "quick-fix" cosmetic treatments, the out to dinner breast augmentation procedure is the subject of controversy. Some people believe the need for speed will only lead to an increased risk of complications or a botched boob job.
Yet so-called lunchtime, or quickie, cosmetic procedures have experienced a rapid increase in popularity over the past few years. And we continue to see plastic surgeons, dermatologists, and other medical experts develop innovative techniques and tools that reduce recovery times, decrease time spent performing the procedures, and increase the efficacy of treatments.
Take for example, SmartLipo, a laser liposuction procedure that can be performed by itself or in conjunction with traditional liposuction to sculpt patients' problem areas.
Selective, Safe, SmartLipo
Approved by the FDA in November of 2006, SmartLipo targets specific areas of fat and tightens the surrounding skin.
"SmartLipo utilizes a tiny filament which delivers a series of rapid fire pulses," explains DocShop expert Dr. Marcia Ormsby, a Maryland plastic surgeon who offers SmartLipo. "The laser energy shrinks the undersurface of the skin and selectively ruptures the fat cells."
The thermal energy from the laser directly targets fat cells, allowing them to be more easily removed from the body. This decreases trauma to affected areas and results in reduced post-operative side effects such as bleeding, swelling, and bruising.
Dr. Ormsby recommends that surgeons use SmartLipo in combination with traditional liposuction so that affected fat cells can be immediately removed from the body. According to Dr. Ormsby, simply allowing the destroyed fat cells to be eliminated through the body's natural process could lead to additional complications.
"Imagine the fat cells being ruptured in great numbers and allowed to sit in the body for metabolic removal. That process would take a long time and in the interim could lead to lumps and even infections," Dr. Ormsby cautions.
Although traditional liposuction techniques can be used with SmartLipo, most patients still experience faster recovery periods due to ease of fat removal and decreased trauma to surrounding tissue.
In fact, Dr. Ormsby says that patients who just need small areas of the body contoured can undergo treatment during their lunch hour on Friday and be well enough by Monday to return to work.
"The recovery occurs in conjunction with the liposuction procedure," Dr. Ormsby says. "Three days of limited activity to reduce bleeding, with ice to the treated areas."
So it seems that lunchtime lipo and enlargements are poised to join the quickie cosmetic trend. Of course, the lunchtime face 'lift' has been hailed as a speedy plastic surgery procedure for years.
From ThreadLift™ to SLUPLift
Quickie facial rejuvenation procedures have long remained the mainstay of lunchtime cosmetic procedures. Injectables such as BOTOX® Cosmetic and Restylane® and facial treatments including laser resurfacing and microdermabrasion have become popular wrinkle-eradicating treatments that can be performed in less than an hour.
But many patients need a lifting procedure to tighten areas suffering from skin laxity and smooth out facial lines and creases.
Enter the ThreadLift™, a longer-lasting wrinkle reducing solution for men and women in their 30s, 40s, and beyond.
The Contour ThreadLift™ procedure is performed under local anesthesia. During treatment, clear threads are used to reposition drooping facial skin. The threads are anchored to the skin behind the hairline, holding skin in place until the threads are removed.
The Contour ThreadLift™ has become known as the lunchtime face lift because treatment can typically be performed in 30 minutes to an hour. Resulting in minimal bruising and swelling, patients only need a day or two to recover from treatment, and the effects can last up to five years.
In October 2007, a new lunchtime lifting procedure was introduced to American consumers. Ladies and gentlemen, introducing… the SLUPLift, care of Manhattan plastic surgeon Oleh Slupchynskyj, MD.
The SLUPLift is similar to the ThreadLift™, but, according to Dr. Slupchynskyj, there is a major difference.
"The muscle under the skin is sutured in my procedure, so it will not loosen over time," Dr. Slupchynskyj was reported as saying to Fox News.
Conversely, during the ThreadLift™ procedure, the fat beneath the skin is sutured. Dr. Slupchynskyj says this leads to more short-term, unnatural looking results.
Unfortunately for consumers interested in undergoing the SLUPLift, it is not widely available as of yet.
Willing to Wait?
While plastic surgeons continue to develop innovative techniques that reduce the operating and recovery times of procedures, it can be difficult to find a specialist trained to perform specific treatments.
With the FDA approval of the materials used in the ThreadLift™ procedure in 2004 and SmartLipo gaining FDA approval in 2006, more and more providers are offering these treatments.
However, the 'out-to-dinner' breast augmentation and SLUPLift techniques were introduced in the fall of 2007, meaning it could be months or even years before your local plastic surgeon offers these treatments.
In the meanwhile, those savvy cosmetic consumers who can't wait to undergo treatment can always travel to meet with a specialist trained in the procedure they desire, or meet with a local surgeon to discuss alternative treatment options.