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Plastic Surgeon Stresses the Importance of Choosing the Right Procedure

To ensure their safety and results, it's crucial for patients to find medical professionals who will help them choose between breast augmentation and lift, or liposuction and tummy tuck, says Chicago-area plastic surgeon Dr. Paul M. Steinwald.

Chicago, Illinois (December 2013) — Plastic surgeon Dr. Paul M. Steinwald ( says that advising a patient who requests liposuction that he or she really needs a tummy tuck at his Chicago-area practice is one of the most important parts of his job.

"Patients should be able to rely on their surgeon to honestly assess their physical condition and advise them on which procedure they need to reach their goals," Dr. Steinwald says.

A woman who may have had 2 or 3 children and now has loose abdominal skin, for example, is probably not going to be a good liposuction candidate, he says, because her skin won't shrink back into place once fat is removed. What makes a tummy tuck (or abdominoplasty) so powerful is that it not only removes a majority of loose skin (and stretch marks or scars), but it also tightens the underlying abdominal musculature and framework. Many people think they need liposuction, though, he says, probably because it's so well known for body sculpting.

Unfortunately, Dr. Steinwald says, many surgeons simply perform the cosmetic procedures patients ask for, or that the surgeon is most comfortable doing, even if they don't result in the improved appearance the patient desires. Not only is it a discouraging and costly mistake, but it can also pose safety concerns.

"A woman who gets a breast augmentation when she really needs a breast lift may come to my practice near Chicago for revision surgery," Dr. Steinwald says. "Revision surgery is generally more complicated than primary breast surgery and includes more risks."

Choosing the correct procedure isn't limited to surgical options, he says. Men and women who are considering brow lift surgery to help them appear younger often are good candidates for minimally invasive injectable treatments instead, such as dermal fillers or BOTOX® Cosmetic. Although the final decision is the patient's, Dr. Steinwald says he knows the best plastic surgeons in Chicago make sure their patients understand why one path is likely to better accomplish the results they desire.

He recommends these steps for patients to ensure they choose a plastic surgeon with the training and experience necessary to provide medically sound advice.

  • Check to make sure your surgeon is certified by a board recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties. Some doctors who call themselves cosmetic surgeons have no special training in plastic surgery.
  • During your consultation, ask the surgeon how often he performs the specific procedure that you want.
  • Get recommendations from friends or relatives who have undergone a similar procedure. If you know someone in the medical field, ask about the reputation of the surgeon.
  • Get a second opinion if a surgeon recommends a different procedure than you initially wanted and you aren't sure.

To get to know Dr. Steinwald, simply request a consultation online and save $50 off the regular consultation fee. Or, call the Lake Forest Plastic Surgery office at (303) 278-2600 to schedule your visit. Dr. Steinwald looks forward to helping you achieve your optimal appearance.

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