Please Explain: Plastic Surgery

Friday, July 10, 2009

On today's Please Explain, we’ll look at plastic surgery, from liposuction to Botox to rhinoplasty, and what happens when someone goes under the knife to improve his or her appearance. We'll be joined by Dr. Robert Grant, Chief of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at New York Presbyterian Hospital and by Dr. Reza Jarrahy Assistant Professor in the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at UCLA.


Dr. Robert Grant and Dr. Reza Jarrahy

Comments [24]

Linda from San Diego

I'm not sure if this is of importance to you. I found this site when looking for Liposuction surgeons. It's completely free and they only deal with the best of the best. I have used them a couple times now. Check them out (; seriously.

Jul. 16 2009 11:36 PM
Pam, MD from NY

Folks: don't be misled by what the doctor has said about breast surgery and cancer; you need this further information. While they don't increase the risk of cancer, cosmetic breast surgeries increase the chance that a cancer won't be detected by mammography or other radiological studies. This is an EXTREMELY serious consideration.

Jul. 10 2009 02:09 PM
Jennifer from NYC

what does menopause have to do with success of surgery?

Jul. 10 2009 01:58 PM
David from NJ from New Jersey

As a Health Plan Medical Director I have been faced with many potentially cosmetic procedure requests for plastic surgery. As far as finishing clef palate procedures over time, even though the last procedure for lip repairs on older children causes no functional impairment, I have always approved them and advocated for a policy to pay for this procedure. The real areas of contention are breast reduction the surgeon stating that removing 500 tto 1000 grams of breast of breast tissue will cure an obese woman's back pain. general weight loss is the best answer. Then there are requests to remove a paniculus ( when an obese abdomen 's fat hangs down over there abdomen). This is a tummy tuck which even their society classifies as cosmetic but the plastic surgeons try to get our health insurance to pay for this procedure frequently in bariatric surgery patients.

Jul. 10 2009 01:56 PM
Amy from Manhattan

I'm glad one of the guests mentioned the distinction between reconstructive & cosmetic plastic surgery. Insurance companies seem to have trouble making this distinction too, at least these days. A friend of mine recently had surgery to correct severe structural sinus problems that caused her serious breathing problems, exacerbated by her allergies. Her insurance had refused to pay for the surgery for over a decade because they classified it as cosmetic surgery. I'm not sure what changed their mind. On the other hand, a coworker (around 1980, I think--before managed care?) also had genuinely necessary surgery for a deviated nasal septum & decided to have a nose job as long as she was having the other operation, & apparently there was no problem having it paid for by her health insurance.

Jul. 10 2009 01:53 PM
Richard Pierce from Brooklyn

Regarding facial fillers. There seem to be two options, injection of fat tissue from the body and injections of juvederm or other facial fillers. How do these compare in efficacy, etc, Thanks. Richard

Jul. 10 2009 01:50 PM
paul from nyc

The wife of former Scotland footballer Colin Hendry has died in hospital after battling a serious infection.
Denise Hendry, 42, who lived in Lytham, Lancashire, developed a meningitis-type infection after an operation to correct botched cosmetic surgery.
She had been seriously ill in Salford Royal Hospital for 11 weeks, and died on Friday surrounded by her family.
Mrs Hendry suffered multiple organ failure after a liposuction procedure at a private hospital in 2002.
Further corrective surgery at Preston Royal Hospital was unsuccessful and the family took the decision to seek further treatment in Salford, where she underwent reconstructive surgery on her abdomen.

Jul. 10 2009 01:49 PM
Janice Fellegara from brooklyn

Can't excess skin, even if removed cosmetically, be used for skin repair in other people

Jul. 10 2009 01:48 PM
Walter from NYC

Do African Americans and other dark skinned people scar and have other complications from plastic surgery more so than lighter skinned races?

Jul. 10 2009 01:46 PM
darla from tribeca

is it ok to have a head and neck surgeon perform a face lift- albeit a very highly respected one who performs many many face lifts? is it the same as seeing a "plastic surgeon"? is he a plastic surgeon? what exactly is a plastic surgeon?

Jul. 10 2009 01:44 PM
Adrienne from NYC

Lymphedema (congenital or acquired) is a disfiguring condition that has no cure, although I've heard some talk about liposuction. It seems as if it would be damaging to the lymphatic system.

Would you please ask about this very difficult and neglected medical problem?

Jul. 10 2009 01:39 PM
brian from brooklyn

How do overseas procedures compare in price and safety, to domestic?

Jul. 10 2009 01:38 PM

If you have liposuction are you removing the fat cells? So you can't gain fat in the same areas again? So if you gain weight again will you see it other areas.

And who are the candidates for lipo?

Jul. 10 2009 01:37 PM
Janice Fellegara from brooklyn

Shouldn't all physisians have an esthetic interest in outcomes

Jul. 10 2009 01:35 PM
lila from nj

have there been any studies that link breast reduction surgery lowering the risk of breast cancer?

Jul. 10 2009 01:34 PM

What about hair transplantation to cover up baldness. Are there any drawbacks to it?

Jul. 10 2009 01:34 PM

What about the adds for penial enlargement? Is that a scam or can that actually be done via plastic surgery?

Jul. 10 2009 01:33 PM

Have the professors ever seen the show Nip/Tuck about plastic surgeons. What do they think of the surgeries they do. Is it realistic from the surgical point of view?

Jul. 10 2009 01:32 PM
judy from NYC

Would it really be possible for a person to bleach their skin, as MJ was purported to have done?

Jul. 10 2009 01:31 PM
Michael from Norwalk

What can be done to improve appearance -minimize wrinkles, remove blemishes or age spots, rejuvenate skin- short of using surgery or injections? I am thinking of lasers and/or deep facials, chemical peels, etc. How effective are they, and how long do they last?

Jul. 10 2009 01:25 PM

Why don't PS victims see how horrible they look (think Joan Rivers)?

And is this the sign of a bad surgeon, or just a surgeon with bad taste?

Jul. 10 2009 01:23 PM

In California, I've been seeing women who have seriously overdone the Restylane and the botox.

It is scary. They don't look younger when they do that, they just look freakier. (And it ain't just here...)

Women look fine with wrinkles. Do they tell Robert De Niro he can't have wrinkles? Then why can't any actress of his same age have wrinkles?

Stop the madness. Please consider sending the money you'd spend on Restylane to a hunger prevention program in the developing world.

And hold you head high - no one should make you feel badly for aging!!!

Jul. 10 2009 12:55 PM
hjs from 11211

if you have poor self esteem changing your face won't change how you feel about yourself

Jul. 10 2009 12:28 PM
Laura from suburbs

What are the issues with filling wrinkles with silicone, something a doctor described to me as 'safe and permanent'?

Jul. 10 2009 11:08 AM

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