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Body Contouring

Body Contouring

The desire for a healthier, well-proportioned, contoured and sculpted body is not a new one. Anyone who has made a concerted effort to lose weight, get fit, and lead a healthier lifestyle knows that it takes a lot of motivation, strength of mind and body, and physical work to get to where they want to be, and to feel great about how they look and what they’ve done to achieve that look.

At The Plastic Surgery Clinic, we love what we do and we are proud to be continuously up to date on the newest technologies that are always being improved on, and even more importantly we make sure that we are always up to date on all the latest and most innovative surgical techniques that will give our patients the best results possible.

Ask anyone who has put years into healthier eating and loads of exercise how frustrating it is to arrive at their goal weight only to be met with stubborn pockets of fat that are resistant to diet and exercise, or in cases where a lot of weight has been lost to be met with a lot of excess, sagging skin. It’s overwhelmingly frustrating. But that’s where we come in and thanks to some fancy new tools and advanced surgical techniques we can help you achieve the body that you rightfully deserve.

Body contouring is a trending topic, and the demand for fat reduction treatments is growing at an exponential rate. There are both surgical and non-surgical body sculpting options, and which one you choose is dependent on your individual needs, your anatomy, and the look you are trying to achieve.

What is Surgical Body Contouring?

If you’re thinking about a surgical body contouring procedure you’ll find that there is a lot more to think about, carefully plan, and take into consideration than with a non-surgical body contouring treatment. Surgical body contouring procedures are typically best suited for patients who have experienced massive weight loss and are looking to tighten or remove excess or sagging skin, or for women whose bodies have undergone a number of changes due to pregnancy or breastfeeding and who wish to return to their pre-pregnancy state. Surgical body contouring procedures are also great for targeting certain areas of the body in order give you the shape that you desire.

At The Plastic Surgery Clinic we offer a number of surgical body contouring procedures from a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty), to a variety of lift procedures (overall body, breast, arm, thigh, buttocks), to liposuction. The one you choose is really dependent on which area of the body you are seeking to reshape.

The Tummy Tuck

If you are looking to reshape your stomach or waist, the tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) is ultimately the most effective solution for those who want to treat loose skin and muscle around the abdomen. At The Plastic Surgery Clinic we perform between 200 and 300 tummy tuck procedures every year at our state-of-the-art facility, making us one of the most experienced practices in all of Canada.

Sometimes loose skin is the result of significant weight loss, while for others it’s a natural outcome after pregnancy. Often during pregnancy, the two major rectus abdominal muscles actually come apart—a huge testament to what a woman’s body is capable of in supporting the life and growth of her baby. For some women, these muscles do not come back together after childbirth, creating a condition known as rectus diastasis that gives us that lower abdominal fullness. Unfortunately, sit-ups or other exercises won’t bring these muscles back together. But with a tummy tuck, we’re able to suture them together while also removing excess skin and fat.

Lift Procedures

Lift procedures are another type of surgical body contouring option that eliminate fat and excess skin, as well as tighten tissue in order to reshape parts of the body that have experienced massive weight loss or transformations due to pregnancy and breastfeeding. There are a number of areas of the body where lifts can be particularly desirable and can achieve a great long-term result.

Patients who have experienced massive weight loss sometimes find that the skin on the upper arm does not shrink and they are left with hanging skin. An arm lift can eliminate this excess hanging skin, as well as tighten and reshape the upper part of the arm.

breast lift or mastopexy is a procedure to raise or lift the breast, which may sag or have deflated often as a result of pregnancy or breastfeeding.

Patients who have lost a significant amount of weight often experience loose and sagging skin on most areas of their body. In these instances, the best way to improve skin laxity is with an overall body lift procedure. A body lift also improves on contour irregularities of the abdomen, hips, thighs, buttocks, and to some degree, the lower back and flanks, and can in certain instances also improve cellulite.

A circumferential body lift (or Belt Lipectomy) removes excess and hanging skin, and offers the most dramatic transformation of the mid and lower body. It is truly a re-sculpting of the abdomen, hips, and buttocks. Broken into its components, the lower body lift includes a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) and a buttock lift. Excess skin and fat from the entire midsection of the body is removed and the skin closure is tailored to enhance the figure.

thigh lift reshapes the thigh area by removing unwanted fat as well as by tightening the skin and tissue surrounding the thigh area.

A buttock lift removes both unwanted fat and skin in order to reshape the buttocks. Some patients find that their buttocks is lacking shape due to sagginess and a loss of volume, in which case the Brazilian Butt Lift is a procedure in which unwanted fat from other areas of the body is used in order to lift, add volume, and re-sculpt the buttocks area.

Liposuction

Most surgical body contouring procedures are paired with liposuction. Some patients require liposuction alone, but it is not uncommon to have liposuction performed in combination with the tummy tuck, thigh lift or buttock lift (particularly the Brazilian Butt Lift) for instance.

Liposuction removes unwanted fat from specific areas in order to sculpt and contour the body, giving it a more proportional and shapely silhouette. Liposuction is one of the safest surgical procedures for fat reduction and at The Plastic Surgery Clinic, Dr. Lista, Dr. Ahmad and Dr. Austin are always up to date on all the most recent innovative techniques in this field.

Liposuction is performed much the same way for every patient, but variations in technique do exist. In order to perform liposuction, your surgeon will make a tiny incision in the designated area and insert a narrow tube or cannula which will be pushed back and forth through the layer of fat that lies deep beneath the skin. This will break up the fat cells and suction them out.

Surgical Body Contouring Photo Gallery

Our photo gallery is organized by specific procedures. Look through our tummy tuck photos, liposuction photos, Brazilian butt lift photos, arm lift photos and thigh lift photos to see some of the results we were able to achieve.

Every body is different, and everyone’s goals are unique to them as well. We’ll ensure we tailor the right procedure or combination of procedure to achieve your body contouring goals. Keep in mind that what you see on the website in terms of before and after photos should only be taken for educational purposes. We also have many more photos we can show you when you come for a complimentary consultation.

Here is a small selection of photos showing the results of some of these procedures.

The following images are presented for educational purposes only and should be interpreted subjectively. They do not represent the opinion or view of any patient regarding their result, and they are not intended to suggest the result that may be achieved by any other patient. The images are presented as factual guidelines and merely represent results that have been achieved by others. No two patients are alike and no two results are necessarily alike. Only a personal consultation with your surgeon can provide you with a reasonable expectation of the results you may achieve from any specific procedure.

Cost of Body Contouring Surgery

The cost of body contouring surgery is very much dependent on the procedure or combination procedures that you undergo. This depends on a lot of factors that can only be assessed in person and in consultation with one of our expert surgeons.

Dr. Lista, Dr. Ahmad and Dr. Austin are world renowned authorities on body contouring procedures. They have helped many patients overcome the after effects on the body following significant weight loss and the changes endured as a result of pregnancy and breastfeeding. Following a physical examination, and after listening carefully to your questions, concerns, and desires, they will be able to recommend the correct procedure or combination surgery that will get you the closest to the result that you are looking to achieve.

Once the cost of your procedure has been determined, we can offer you a number of financing options that will make the entire process as smooth and worry-free as possible.

The Best Candidates for Body Contouring Surgery

The best candidates for body contouring surgery are individuals who have reached or are close to their weight loss goals and have maintained this weight for a period of approximately 6-12 months.

Smokers will be asked to stop smoking for at least one month before and for one month following their surgery. Smoking inhibits wound healing and proper blood circulation.

A healthy and realistic expectation of your post-surgical body contouring results is also very important. Body contouring surgery can have a dramatic effect on what your body looks like, but it will not necessarily give you the “perfect” body.

Preparing for your Body Contouring Surgery

Depending on the type of body contouring procedure you have performed, your surgeon will tell you the best way to prepare for your surgery from organizing an effective support system for when you go home to recommendations on how to prepare nutritionally, including what vitamins to take and which medications to take or to avoid.

Patients who have undergone significant weight loss (more than 50 lbs) are placed on a high-protein supplement for one month before surgery and one month following surgery in order to reduce the risk of wound healing complications.

Where your Body Contouring Surgery is Performed

Body contouring surgery is performed at our state-of-the-art clinic in Mississauga by one of our expert surgeons Dr. Lista, Dr. Ahmad or Dr. Austin. Our cutting-edge facility meets and exceeds medical standards in every way, whether it be equipment, infection control, as well as nursing and medical staff.

Should you require your surgery be performed at a hospital, our doctors also have privileges at The Trillium Health Centre in Mississauga as well as at the University Health Network and St. Joseph’s Health Centre in Toronto.

You can rest assured that you will be met with the highest standards of medical care prior to your surgery, during your procedure, and as you recover,  no matter where your surgery is performed.

Recovery after Body Contouring Surgery

The recovery period following your body contouring surgery will depend entirely on the procedures that you have performed. Typically, any bandages placed over incisions will remain in place for a few days, and some parts of the body may require you to wear an elastic (compression) bandage or garment for several weeks in order to keep swelling under control.

We really stress the importance of our patients being patient with themselves and their bodies. No matter what body contouring procedure you are getting you need to give your body plenty of time to heal before you see the full impact of your transformation. Bruising usually resolves after a few weeks. Swelling typically takes 3-6 months to resolve, while it takes scars up to 1 year to fully mature and fade.

We encourage gentle exercise soon following surgery; however, strenuous exercise should be avoided for at least six to eight weeks.

At The Plastic Surgery Clinic, our surgeons, nurses and staff are there with you through every step of the recovery process. We are on call 24 hours a day immediately following your surgery should you have any questions or concerns, and always available to welcome you back to the clinic if you need to be seen by your surgeon or nurse in person outside of your already scheduled post-op appointments.

Body Contouring Surgery Risks and Complications

Although they are rare, there are risks to any surgical procedure. Some risks associated with body contouring surgery include, bleeding (or hematoma), infection, fluid accumulation (seroma), persistent pain, fat necrosis, prolonged swelling, and complications that may arise from anesthesia.

In order to ensure a proper and speedy recovery and to avoid any risks associated with surgery, we always strongly advise our patients to follow their surgeons’ post-operative guidelines as closely and as carefully as possible.

Body Contouring Surgery Innovative Techniques

EVL (Expansion, Vibration, Lipofilling)

Brazilian Butt Lift surgery involves liposuction to remove unwanted fat in target areas. This fat is then injected into the buttocks to improve its shape and increase its size. Early approaches used to inject fat directly into the gluteal muscles and this had some disastrous consequences.

EVL or Expansion Vibration Lipofilling was pioneered by Dr. Simeon Wall Jr. and is an approach that maximizes shaping and the amount of fat that can be injected into the subcutaneous (fatty) tissue of the buttocks while avoiding injection into the gluteal muscles, thus avoiding the serious complication of a macrofat embolism. At The Plastic Surgery Clinic we were the first to perform EVL in Canada many years ago.

SAFE lipo

At The Plastic Surgery Clinic we perform a number of different variations of liposuction. SAFE lipo is one of the newest and most innovative surgical techniques that our surgeons have perfected and use. Although most liposuction techniques are very safe, patients and doctors were finding that following a liposuction procedure patients would be left with contour irregularities. To counter this, a liposuction technique was designed that significantly reduces the chances of ending up with contour irregularities while at the same time eliminating as much fat as possible.

SAFE lipo stands for Separation, Aspiration, and Fat Equalization. Fat cells are always connected to either other fat cells or other fibrous elements, so when performing SAFE lipo, the first thing that our expert surgeons do is separate the fat cells from each other as well as from other fibrous elements via power-assisted liposuction (PAL). This allows the fat cells to loosen and emulsify, and makes it easier for our surgeons to take a more targeted approach by removing the freed up unwanted fat cells (via aspiration or suction, the second step in SAFE lipo) with the use of much smaller cannulas, while keeping a light healthy layer of fat cells intact.

This approach also greatly reduces bruising and swelling, and prevents internal scarring. In the final step of SAFE lipo, our surgeons focus on the light layer of fat that they left behind just below the surface of the skin. This layer of fat is key to achieving beautiful, natural-looking long-term results. In this final step our expert surgeons use fat equalization probes in order to smooth and even out the fat that remains, giving our patients that much desired leveled and toned look of the skin.

The other remarkable advantage of the SAFE lipo surgical technique is that because it not only separates fat from other fat globules but also blood vessels, it minimizes bleeding and also suctions out fat that is then in perfect condition to be used for fat grafting to other parts of the body.

The decision to undergo any type of body contouring procedure whether surgical or non is a big one that affects your body and your health, and you should feel 100% confident in the decision that you make. In order to do that, we know that you really need an in-depth conversation with one of our surgeons. During your complimentary consultation they’ll spend a lot of time discussing your questions and concerns in detail so that they can put together a customized plan that will work best for your goals and your body.

Non-Surgical Body Contouring Treatments

What you need to keep in mind when thinking about a body contouring procedure is that non-surgical body sculpting treatments are not about weight loss, but about fat reduction, meaning that if you choose to have a non-surgical body contouring treatment you need to keep your expectations realistic as to what the treatment can do for you and your body.

Typically an ideal candidate for a non-surgical body contouring procedure is someone who is already at their goal weight, and is really just looking to get rid of small amounts of unwanted fat that is resistant to diet and exercise. The takeaway is that these procedures should be accompanied by a healthy lifestyle that includes a balanced diet and regular exercise.

Different treatments use different kinds of methods and technologies, and some work better on certain areas of the body than others. You’ll find that there is no one size fits all body contouring treatment out there. The great thing about non-surgical body contouring procedures is that they are minimally invasive, one treatment usually takes no longer than an hour, they usually require little to no downtime, and most patients feel comfortable returning to their regular daily activities immediately following their treatment.

That said, depending on what area you are looking to treat, or if you’re looking to target more than one part of your body, you might be looking at multiple treatments and sessions, and it’s not uncommon to treat one area of the body more than once to get the result that you are looking for.

When it comes to non-surgical body contouring procedures some use something called cryolipolysis, which means that the treatment uses controlled freezing temperatures in order to eliminate those unwanted fat cells. Other treatments employ methods like laser lipolysis or radiofrequency lipolysis. Rather than targeting fat cells with controlled freezing temperatures, they actually do the opposite, and use controlled heating in order to target fat cells often paired with either laser energy or ultrasound technology.

It’s not necessarily that one is more effective than the other, rather these different methods, although used essentially to arrive at the same result (permanently destroying unwanted fat cells), can be better suited for one individual’s needs over another’s.

At The Plastic Surgery Clinic we’re big fans of CoolSculpting. The non-surgical part of our practice, MD Beauty Clinic, offers CoolSculpting treatments.

CoolSculpting employs cryolipolysis. It works by freezing unwanted fat cells under the skin without damaging the surrounding tissue and allows for the fat to be naturally broken down and eliminated from the body in the weeks that follow the treatment. Whereas exercise will only reduce these unwanted fat cells, CoolSculpting works to eliminate them altogether. Excess fat found under the chin, in the upper neck, under the arms, on the back, on the abdomen, the flanks, thighs, knees, buttocks and under the buttocks, are where fat elimination will be most successful.

Many patients interested in non-surgical body contouring procedures often wonder about the difference between CoolSculpting and a treatment like SculpSure. SculpSure basically works towards the same goal, to remove unwanted fat cells, but it uses lipolysis, controlled and targeted heating as opposed to cryolipolysis (freezing), in order to get there. At The Plastic Surgery Clinic we have found CoolSculpting to be a more comfortable procedure than treatments that employ lipolysis. CoolSculpting has also been available in Canada for over 10 years, is Health Canada and FDA cleared, and is voted the best non-surgical fat reduction treatment in the world.

Because of the high temperatures that need to be reached in order to destroy fat cells, lipolysis-centered treatments tend to be less comfortable and also target and destroy fewer fat cells in one treatment. There are some patients that find freezing temperatures more difficult to bear, in which case a lipolysis-centered approach might be a more desirable option.

We always encourage anyone interested in a non-surgical body contouring procedure to book a complimentary consultation with one of our expert plastic surgeons or with our certified CoolSculpting provider at MD Beauty Clinic in order to assess whether this is the treatment for you and the result you are looking to achieve, or if there might be a better-suited procedure for you.

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Your Guide to Body Contouring


Some things in life you just can’t change. Whether you’ve lost weight resulting in loose or hanging skin, or you've...

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