I had a patient come to me for a second opinion consult after having had a breast and body surgery done elsewhere. This is not surprising in itself, as I see so many people dissatisfied with results of other plastic surgeons. What was unique was that she liked everything about her procedure except the scars. And the scars were perfect.
Each body heals differently after injury, and as a Board Certified plastic surgeon, I am well trained in techniques to try and hide or minimize the appearance of scars. The overwhelming majority of my patients heal well, but not 100% Having a thick, dark, red or even keloidal scar is not always the result of a poorly performed closure. In fact, I would place the majority of the scar on the patient’s skin type.
I always discuss scarring with patients before performing procedures, and it is spelled out clearly on all of my consent forms. I even work with the patients at every visit, advising them as to the best care of the incisions. We offer treatments including creams, lasers, microneedling, and injections.
I had to explain to this patient that her scars were of good quality and no further treatment was needed or advised. That the most important word of the two word phrase “plastic surgery” was “surgery”. The patient left unsatisfied, thinking all plastic surgeons stick together. She said she had the surgery part, and would find someone to fix the plastic part. I wish her good luck.
After 22 tax seasons in Washington Heights, I have come to know that many patients utilize their income tax refund checks to finance plastic surgery. It is kind of like found money, and it is a forced savings plan for some.
This year, we are in a government shutdown, and the thought is that these checks may be delayed. The IRS is a government agency, and they will be far behind in the processing of these refund checks. This may lead to a delay in surgery.
February is when the fever usually starts, and it flows into August, as the schools let out and more people have time off. It will be interesting to see how the flow goes this year.
So with all of the craziness and partisan politics, none of the law makers have to forego their salaries as the other government employees do. The people living paycheck to paycheck who can least afford it are the ones getting pinched.
My message to those in charge is to start acting like grownups and learn to play together. Remember, you are in office to serve the people, not your party’s interests. Put the American people first. Do not delay cosmetic surgery. Make America Beautiful Again!
Plastic Surgeons are people, and they have friends and family like everyone else. We get sick, go to see doctors, and even need surgery at times. One of my favorite people is having surgery tomorrow. He is also a doctor, although not in my field.
Just like anyone else, he is a bit anxious about it. He knows that the overwhelming likelihood is that the surgery will go well, and no complications are anticipated, but a tiny bit of fear and respect always creeps in.
Doctors can be more nervous than the public at large, as they think of all of the cases that they have seen and heard of where something goes wrong. Will I wake up from the anesthesia, will they discover something they didn’t anticipate, what if I have a previously undiscovered allergy or medication reaction? Sometimes too much knowledge can be a negative.
As a physician and a friend, I am concerned for his well being, and have spoken to him about the procedure. I try to assure him that all will go well without invalidating his concerns. When it comes down to it, I will not be in the operating room, and he will not be able to participate in his own operation, so we are merely spectators as are most people in this situation.
I will think good thoughts, send positive vibes and be supportive, but as a doctor my degree is useless in this circumstance. Plastic Surgeons are people just like you.
As we march through our 22nd year here in Washington Heights, the beginning of the year is a good time to lay out our vision for the calendar of the next 12 months. We try to stay fresh and relevant, and always work to improve the patient experience and what we can offer.
We have greatly expanded the nonsurgical offerings, utilizing the latest techniques of microneedling, PRP, and next generation lasers for tattoo removal, facials, scar corrections and skin rejuvenation. Upgraded RF technology allows for better skin tightening and minor fat reduction. Our skin treatments have really taken off with the latest skin care only offered through MD offices, and we have tailored them to our Hispanic patients as we do for all treatments.
We have created a custom electronic charting system which we will roll out to make less waste of paper and allow us instant access to each chart. We continue to add to it with patient portals so that you can access information from your home.
We will be upgrading our social media outreach with professional and educational posts to keep you up to date on hot topics and even on our pop up events and seminars and special offerings. More videos and quick advice on your questions are coming.
While we like to keep current, the one thing that will never change is our commitment to the Hispanic community and providing unsurpassed quality and information to keep them educated as to the safest and best options available. After 22 years here, I still feel I improve every day, and my passion for helping patients achieve their dreams burns strongly within me.
We look forward to seeing you in 2019 and beyond!