Plastic Surgery 101

Before doing a tummy tuck or facelift, know that weight loss can affect the outcome

Weight loss is a crucial part of the overall picture when considering plastic surgery. Procedures that are affected by weight loss include facelifts, liposuction and tummy tucks.
Weight loss is a crucial part of the overall picture when considering plastic surgery. Procedures that are affected by weight loss include facelifts, liposuction and tummy tucks. Miami Herald file

Q. I’m planning to lose weight but would like to have some cosmetic surgery. A lot of my friends have told me that I should not have any cosmetic surgery until I lose all my weight.

I really wanted to have my eyes done before my daughter‘s wedding. Can I do that without being concerned about weight loss?

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Dr. Carlos Wolf Miami

A. Your friends are not entirely wrong.

Weight loss is a crucial part of the overall picture when considering plastic surgery. Procedures that are affected by weight loss include facelifts, liposuction and tummy tucks.

When patients are considering a facelift, I will tell them that if they are about to lose weight, they should lose it before the surgery. Fat is not only present in the body, but in the face and it supports the skin and tissue.

If a patient undergoes a facelift and loses weight shortly thereafter, much of what was gained in the surgery will be lost due to fat loss. Similarly, when patients undergo liposuction, tummy tucks or breast reductions, the loss of fat will affect the ultimate outcome.

Blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery) and rhinoplasty ( nose surgery) — unlike the previously mentioned surgeries — are not affected by either weight gain or weight loss.. I have found that when patients do have a blepharoplasty or rhinoplasty, they are often motivated to lose weight, which enables them to undergo another procedure in the future.

I encourage my patients to be at their optimal weight prior to having surgery. Ultimately, their results will depend on them maintaining that weight.

Sometimes, patients feel they will remain the same weight but then lose weight due to their new results. If that is the case, then revision surgery could be required. Because everybody’s weight is unique to them, you should talk to your facial plastic surgeon or plastic surgeon when considering surgery.

Carlos Wolf is a clinical assistant professor at F.I.U. Herbert Wertheim School of Medicine and a partner in Miami Plastic Surgery. Follow him on Instagram @Carloswolfmd.

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