The desire to look great and stave off age is not only felt by women. Men of all ages want to look great, too, and have been warming up to the possibilities offered by plastic surgery.
With a whole host of non-surgical technologies, and faster recoveries on classic procedures, plastic surgeons like Dr. Bruce Van Natta are seeing an influx of interested male patients. The options are aplenty while one common theme abounds: little to no downtime to get patients in, out, and back to their busy lives.
By Bruce Van Natta, MD
and The Plastic Surgery Channel
The most appealing procedures don’t involve surgery
Especially for men in their middle age years, seeing the hairline fade backwards, wrinkles and lines appear on the face, and bags grow underneath the eyes lead many to wish they could reverse the clock. In the past, reversing the clock meant going into the operating room under general anesthesia and having to deal with protracted recovery times. Weeks of recovery is not something many have time for, especially in the middle of a busy life. For these reasons, the idea of having work done came and went for many men. Times are changing.
The driving force behind men now coming into plastic surgery offices is the numerous procedures that do not involve surgery. “There are non-surgical options,” says Dr. Van Natta, “options like Botox or Dysport to get rid of lines, and fillers to add volume. We’ve got things like CoolSculpting to treat problem love handles and all can be done without surgery.”
Today, fine lines, wrinkles, facial volume-loss, even removing fat from love handles and the belly can all be addressed without surgery! As technology grows, these devices and procedures grow in complexity and yield better results. With so much interest in non-invasive procedures, device manufacturers work with surgeons and scientists to develop other options, such as the MiraDry device for armpit perspiration.
“Another really interesting area is MiraDry,” explains Van Natta. “This is a treatment for sweating under the arms. I’ve actually had this treatment myself and I can tell you it really works. The area is numbed then we use microwave technology to heat up the sweat glands and odor glands and they are gone, forever. You don’t have to use deodorant or antiperspirant; you don’t sweat under the arms.”
Sometimes surgery is the best option
Plastic surgery is indeed still rooted in surgery. Surgical procedures are still important and can’t all be replaced completely with non-invasive treatments.
“When it comes to surgical options for men, liposuction is a big thing,” says Van Natta. “Men have love handles and belly fat. Working to get that last couple pounds off sometimes you give up and say, ‘Hey, lets just take this out.’ It actually works because liposuction addresses a proportion issue.”
Besides a little fat in the midsection, many men suffer from something completely out of their control: gynecomastia, or excessive breast tissue. “Man boobs” affect a significant number of males, many of whom would rather “deal with it” than go see a surgeon. Never has there been a better time to discuss options with a board certified plastic surgeon.
“Gynecomastia for men, male breast tissue… That is something that we see quite a few guys come in for now,” says Van Natta. “It’s treated often with a combination of liposuction and removal of some of the glandular tissue if needed. Pretty short recovery on these, just a few days of downtime.”
For any concern, consulting with a board certified plastic surgeon could be more than worth a would-be patient’s time. Finding out all of the options, and how some might be individually tailored to you, could be an eye-opening experience.