The Surgeon Minute

Combo Procedures for the Busy Patient

Combo Procedures for the Busy Patient

We all want to look great and age gracefully over the years, and finding the right time in your life for plastic surgery to help can be difficult with careers and family. When the right moment comes, can one do as much as possible while on the operating table?

Dr. David Lickstein of Florida describes patient’s wishes to “combo” procedures in order to make the most out of their time under anesthesia in the OR. A tummy tuck with a breast lift, a neck lift with a facelift, etc. Dr. Lickstein provides insight into the core values of a board certified plastic surgeon as it relates to surgery, namely balancing patient desires and goals with safety.

by Adam McMillon
and David Lickstein, MD

Plastic Surgery Combos

People are busy and time off from a career or a young family can be next to impossible to achieve. “For the person who works and has an active career, it’s very difficult to take time off [to recover from surgery],” says Lickstein. “Similarly for the parent who has responsibilities with their children, there’s really only a fixed period of time that they can devote to themselves.”

Lickstein works with his patients to achieve their goals in the most efficient yet safe manner. If a patient is seeking a tummy tuck and breast lift, maybe it can be worked out in the same surgery. “One of the most frequent questions we get from patients is, ‘What can I do together?’ I understand,” explains Lickstein. “If patients are going to undergo the risks of surgery and anesthesia, they’d like to get as much done as possible.”

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What Can Be Done Together?

One of the core issues with desiring more than one procedure is that usually the bodily areas are aesthetically linked. The abdomen for instance… If a woman has a tummy tuck procedure but has breasts that need a lift, the tummy tuck will look great on its own but may throw off the harmony of the whole trunk section. This means the patient will need to schedule a lift, take off more time from work and/or the family to recover, and go back under general anesthesia. What if the procedures could be done simultaneously?

“The most common combination of procedures usually involve some type of body contouring with breast surgery,” says Lickstein. “That makes sense when we think about it because most people want to look better throughout their whole trunk.”

“As plastic surgeons we often think of harmony in an area of a body and will it match or not match. Very frequently the patient who has a tummy tuck done who is thrilled with their abdominal contour then notices their breasts. Similarly, the patient who has breast surgery will then suddenly notice their abdomen, so they really do fit together.”

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Balancing Achievements with Safety

The best news is that patients have never had so many great options to revive their youth though plastic surgery. Technologies and expertise have created an environment where the best results in the history of the specialty happen on a daily basis. Combination procedures can be achieved by board certified surgeons, but safety is always their #1 goal. “Our job as plastic surgeons is to weigh patients concerns with safey,” explains Lickstein, “it is certainly possible to design a plan that addresses the patients desires yet remains very safe.”

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