Photo Credit: beautyinthebag.com
You can’t change time, but time can change you. Triple board certified plastic surgeon Gilbert Lee, MD, of Changes Plastic Surgery & Spa in San Diego knows this all too well.
As we age or traverse through various life and lifestyle changes such, our face and bodies change as well. Dr. Lee, also an Assistant Clinical Professor of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the University of California at San Diego, is known for his ability to naturally turn back the hands – and effects – of time on faces and bodies.
He chatted with Beauty In the Bag about why liposuction rules, the role that 3D imaging can play in expectation management and a combination lift he pioneered.
Here’s what we learned:
1. What is your Signature Procedure?
In 2009, during one of the worst economies and with few people able to spend on elective surgery, I created the Changes Rapid Lift, a face and neck lift designed to deliver superior results at an affordable price. The Rapid Lift is performed under local anesthetic eliminating costly hospital charges and anesthesia fees. A mini facelift lifts skin only, whereas the Changes Rapid Lift re-suspends the face and neck muscles as well as tissues. The results last approximately 10 years versus 6 months to 2 years for a mini lift. It is also appropriate for all ages and for those who need a small lift to those with greater facial and neck sagging.
2. What is trending today?
There is a growing trend toward non-surgical fat removal methods. Currently CoolSculpting and Sculpsure, which remove fat by freezing it or melting it, respectively, are popular. Manufacturers spend big dollars on media blitzes to sell the systems. The results, however, rarely match the hype. Treatments are expensive and multiple sessions are required. The idea of not having surgery is appealing, but in the long run traditional liposuction is far superior in that it delivers identifiable results in one session.
3. What is the No. 1 question you get from patients and how do you answer it.
Will I look like someone else? This question comes up frequently with patients who are considering facial rejuvenation. Whether its eyelid surgery, rhinoplasty or facelift, they know they want to do something, but fear that the change will make them look like someone else. We use a 3D-computer imaging system to capture an image of the patient with six cameras firing simultaneously. The software converts the image to 3-D. I then can manipulate the images to show the patient how they will look after the proposed surgical procedure, and can compare it with how they look right now. It takes the guesswork out of the outcome and assures the patient they will still look like themselves, just a better version.