Surgeon: Formerly Obese Patients Can Benefit From Plastic Surgery
by: Dr. Jay Calvert
For many dangerously obese people, bariatric surgery is a final option when dieting and exercise has failed or is impossible to perform. A procedure in which the size of the stomach is reduced through a surgical procedure (often a gastric band) or a portion of the stomach is removed altogether, it has produced significant results in not only weight loss, but treating diabetes, improving the heart and lowering the mortality rate.
But this substantial weight loss is only the beginning of the treatment for patients of bariatric surgery. Following such dramatic weight reduction, the body is left with skin that has been stretched to the maximum but now hangs loosely from the body to the patients dismay.
It is here, says Dr. Jay Calvert, MD, FACS, a noted plastic surgeon, that a Total Body Lift can provide the answer.
A Total Body Lift is an intensive procedure in which all of the major body-contouring plastic surgery operations are performed in one single procedure. As one would expect, Dr. Calvert states, it requires a great deal of planning and preparation, as well as a lengthy recovery time (a three to five week hospital stay, with about six weeks of home rest prior to returning to work).
The advantage, says Dr. Calvert, is that it is a way for busy people to have their bodies converted from the post-bariatric or post-weight loss state into a smaller, skin-reduced state in one operation.
Dr. Calverts belief in the involvement of plastic surgeons in the planning and post-operative treatment of bariatric patients stems from his residency days at the University of Pittsburgh hospital where he first learned of laparoscopic weight loss. Following that experience, he went on to perform many body lifts, as well as other cosmetic operations, for patients who had excessive skin due to massive weight loss.
Dr. Calvert sees Total Body Lift as an art and few, if any, of his former patients would disagree.
Post-bariatric body contouring is an art that combines the power of surgical planning with a sense of aesthetic creation, he observes. Every patient is different and has a different shape. Customizing the plan for each patient creates the best possible results for body lift and body contouring.
The treatment of these patients became a special cause for Dr. Calvert, who continues to be a frequent speaker at bariatric support groups. In addition, he often works with a team of plastic surgeons during a Total Body Lift to reduce the time of the operation and thus minimize the surgical risks. A frequent collaborator in these procedures is Dr. Dennis Hurwitz, a colleague from his days at the University of Pittsburgh, who also sees the team approach to Total Body Life as crucial to achieving the best results for their patient.
In addition, Dr. Calvert and Dr. Hurwitz have established the Hurwitz Center for Body Contouring at the Roxbury Clinic and Surgery Center.
Dr. Calvert understands the limitations of the procedure but underlines its benefits as well.
It is not for everyone, he states, but for the right patients, it is the right operation.
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