Getting the Curves You Crave With Plastic Surgery

Getting the Curves You Crave With Plastic Surgery (<i>cont'd</i>)

Spear views every surgery as risky enough to warrant precautions. "We take the risks very seriously and take steps to reduce them. That may mean doing only a certain amount of liposuction at one time, or having a patient spend a night or two in the hospital after surgery."

Liposuction Patient Say It's "Worth It"

Even Elise's typical spot reductions, while not requiring a hospital stay or any other special precautions, left her feeling stiff, sore and numb in the operated areas. These symptoms and pain, burning, swelling, and bleeding are common in the days or weeks following surgery.

Elise says her surgery was "worth it," though she is not entirely satisfied with her plastic surgeon's work. "Now I can dress more easily, though I don't look perfect in a bathing suit."

The surgery won't prevent her from gaining weight; liposuction removes a certain number of fat cells, but the remaining cells can still grow bigger. But Elise's aerobics regimen should help maintain her look.

It's a look she enhanced again earlier this year with a different type of plastic surgery — this time, a breast augmentation.

Breast Implants

Having smoothed out the contour in the bottom half of her body with liposuction, Elise decided that she wanted her top to be more in proportion. It's a very common reason for getting implants, says board-certified plastic surgeon Diane Gerber, M.D., who has performed hundreds of breast augmentations in her Chicago office.

"Most people just want their clothing to fit more uniformly, to get the same size top and bottom. Sometimes they want to look perkier, larger, to replace what they lost during pregnancy."

It's about improving body image, Gerber continues. "That's a very important thing for most people. How you perceive yourself has a lot to do with how you relate to others, whether they're people you're intimate with or just deal with on a day-to-day basis."

Getting breast implants was a "much bigger deal" than liposuction for Elise because, she explains, "Liposuction takes something out of your body; implants put something in."

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