Men and Cosmetic Surgery
Our society places a high value on looking young and fit. Today, men of all ages and all walks of life are requesting plastic surgery for cosmetic reasons. Men’s goals include a more balanced nose, a rejuvenated face, a trimmer waistline. The procedures used to achieve these goals must take into consideration factors such as skin thickness, beard growth, or body type.
This page reviews some of the special considerations for men contemplating a cosmetic procedure. It won’t answer all of your questions, since a lot depends on your individual circumstances. Be sure to ask Dr. Mabourakh if there is anything you don’t understand about the procedure you plan to have.
Planning Your Surgery
Good communication between you and Dr. Mabourakh is essential when planning your surgery. In your initial consultation, you’ll be asked to explain in detail why you want the procedure and how you hope to look and feel afterward. It’s important to set aside any awkwardness you might feel, and speak candidly about the changes you’d like to see. You should feel completely assured that you and Dr. Mabourakh understand one another.
Dr. Mabourakh will also evaluate your health, conduct a physical exam, take pre-operative photographs, and explain which surgical techniques are most appropriate for you. You’ll discuss the type of anesthesia to be used, the type of facility where the surgery will be performed, the possible risks, and the costs involved. Medical insurance usually doesn’t cover cosmetic procedures. However, Dr. Mabourakh offers special financing plans for cosmetic surgery or accept credit cards.
Tell Dr. Mabourakh if any part of the consultation makes you uncomfortable, or if you have any special privacy requests. Above all, it’s important to have realistic expectations about your surgery. Remember, Dr. Mabourakh can offer significant improvement, but not perfection. Keep in mind that your age and health may play a role in the quality of the outcome.
Extensive information about the particular procedure you plan to have will be provided during your consultation. While going over the steps of the procedure, Dr. Mabourakh will discuss a number of issues that may influence your surgery. Make sure you fully understand these considerations.
Facial Surgery: If you are planning facial surgery or neck surgery, Dr. Mabourakh will evaluate your entire head-face-neck region. Is the hairline receding? How full are the sideburns? Does the beard-growing skin extend up the cheeks or down the neck? Are there facial scars? Is the skin sun-damaged? Is the neck skin loose or drooping?
In general, it’s known that male facial skin has a richer blood supply than female facial skin. Male faces bleed more during surgery and are at greater risk for forming a temporary collection or pooling of blood under the skin, called a hematoma, after surgery.
Also, any scarring that may result from surgery may be more difficult for men to hide, since they don’t wear make-up or style their hair toward their faces, as many women do.
Hair growth and beard growth may play a major role in the outcome of a facelift. If you are balding or have thinning hair, surgical artistry may be required to hide the facelift incision, especially in the temple area. If the hair-bearing skin of your upper neck is pulled behind your ears during surgery, you may find that you must shave behind your ears or the back of your neck. However, sometimes electrolysis can correct this problem. Be sure to discuss these possibilities with your Dr. Mabourakh.
A fatty or “jowly” area beneath the chin is also a concern for many men. In younger patients, liposuction alone may be sufficient to correct the problem. Older patients may require a full facelift and necklift, which may include the removal of excess skin and tightening the platysma muscles, which run down each side of the neck. These muscles are usually thicker in men than they are in women, but do not pose a greater challenge for Dr. Mabourakh.
“Refinishing” Treatments for Facial Skin: Shaving must be postponed for about 3 weeks after a skin-smoothing treatment such as chemical peel or dermabrasion. Because these procedures strip away the surface layers of skin, you can expect your face to remain sensitive, swollen, and bright pink for several weeks after surgery.
Some men are happy that the beard growth helps conceal the pinkness of their recovering skin – especially if they feel uncomfortable using camouflage make-up.
Men who feel self-conscious about their condition are also advised to give up alcoholic drinks for about 4 weeks. Alcohol causes the areas of treated facial skin to become noticeably red and flushed.
Changing The Facial Features: Cosmetic procedures such as eyelid surgery, nose surgery, and facial-implant surgery are performed essentially the same way for men and women. However, it’s important to let Dr. Mabourakh know if you are seeking a more masculine look to your facial features — a chin with better projection, more prominent cheekbones, a stronger nose.
Liposuction / Body Contouring: The ideal male body shape is considered to be trim and athletic-looking, with broad shoulders and chest, a flat abdomen, and a narrow hip-thigh area. However, as men age, areas of fat tend to accumulate around the abdomen, the flanks (“love handles”), the breast area (a condition called gynecomastia), and along the chin and neck. Men sometimes seek liposuction to remove these fatty areas that are resistant to diet and exercise.
In many cases, liposuction alone can effectively correct these problem areas. Men retain their skin elasticity longer than women do, and the areas of fat beneath the skin tend to be firmer and more vascular than those in women. Because of these and other factors, liposuction in men is usually very effective.
Men who have some loose, hanging skin as well as areas of excess fat may opt for a traditional excision procedure (surgical skin removal) in addition to liposuction. An excision may also be performed on gynecomastia patients whose breast enlargement is made up of mostly glandular tissue, rather than fat.
Abdomen Reduction: A full abdominoplasty or “tummy tuck” may be chosen by men who have hanging abdominal skin (usually the result of massive weight loss), loose abdominal muscles, and/or neglected hernias. It is a major surgical procedure that removes excess fat, tightens the muscles of the abdominal wall, and trims the waistline. Men who have a full abdominoplasty are often surprised at the long recovery period. Some patients aren’t able to return to work up to 4 weeks after surgery.
Men with good skin elasticity who have only a moderate amount of excess abdominal fat may benefit from liposuction alone.
After Your Surgery
The days and weeks immediately following your surgery are critical to obtaining a good final result. Therefore, it’s essential that you follow Dr. Mabourakh’s orders to the letter. Following orders may mean taking adequate time off work; wearing bandages or tight compression garments; getting enough rest; staying out of the sun; saying no to alcohol and cigarettes; and avoiding strenuous activity, exercise, sports, and even sex.
However, Dr. Mabourakh understands that it’s sometimes difficult for men, who are programmed by society to be stoic, to remain in bed for very long or to accept help from others during recovery. Studies have shown that men often deny their pain and feel foolish about asking for help after surgery. Men who reject help may have an especially difficult recovery if post-operative depression sets in during the weeks following surgery.
To avoid post-operative problems, it’s important that you arrange to have a support person available to help you — both physically and emotionally — for about a week after surgery. If you get the help and rest you need, you’ll improve your chances of a quicker recovery — and you may see your results a lot sooner.
Many of our patients undergo multiple procedures at the same time. Reasons for combining procedures include each patient’s unique goals, recovery time and cost. Most patient’s desire improvement in multiple areas of their body and frequently the best results are achieved through improving more than one of these regions. If Dr. Mabourakh recommends that several procedures may be performed during the same operation, the patient may choose to have combined procedures. The advantage of combining procedures is that recovery time is usually the same as recovery for the “biggest” procedure, which is far less than the total down-time or risk if each procedure is performed independently. Other advantages include:
- A reduction in overall recovery time. Less time away from work or play.
- Quicker and more dramatic results.
- Reduced overall risk: No repeat anesthesia.
- Combining reconstructive as well as cosmetic procedures provides more efficient surgery and yields financial savings.
Total Body Contouring
Total body contouring usually involves an analysis of the arms, breasts, abdomen hips and thighs. Available procedures can be planned in a multitude of combinations and include several variations of breast reduction, reshaping or enlargement, liposuction and lower body lifts to tighten the thighs and buttocks. Recovery for most procedures can be as little as 2-4 days for liposuction and breast surgery and 1-2 weeks for tummy tuck procedures. The advantage of combining procedures in total body contouring is that recovery is usually the same as recovery for the “biggest” procedure, which is far less than the total down-time or risk if each procedure is performed independently.
Tummy Tuck & Liposuction
Liposuction is the procedure most commonly combined with a tummy tuck. Suction of fat in the hips and flanks often complements a tummy tuck by creating a more slender torso. The inner and outer thighs are other areas where patients will often benefit from liposuction at the same time as a tummy tuck. With the newer technique of tumescent liposuction, these areas may be treated more safely and efficiently than ever before.
Tummy Tuck & Breast Enhancement
Breast surgery is also frequently combined with a tummy tuck. After pregnancy and breastfeeding, or after substantial weight loss, the breasts may become droopy. A breast lift may be the best answer for these patients. Patients who have small breasts without droopiness may want to combine breast augmentation with a tummy tuck. The increase in breast size for these patients may help them to achieve more attractive bodily proportions.
Total Facial Rejuvenation
Many facial procedures may be combined into one surgery or even other procedures such as breast augmentation, tummy tuck or liposuction. If it’s a total facial rejuvenation that you are looking for you may consider a combination of facial procedures such as a face lift with laser resurfacing, or a combination of eyes, nose and ears.
Reconstructive & Cosmetic Surgery
Combining reconstructive and cosmetic procedures allows simultaneous recovery and a savings of fees.