October 10th, 2016 Plastic Surgery Specialists
One in every eight American women will be diagnosed with invasive breast cancer at some point in her life. For many of these affected women, treatment will require a mastectomy or double mastectomy to remove the breast(s) and fully eliminate the cancerous tissue from the body. While this treatment may heal the body, it can be traumatizing and may lead to intense emotional pain. If you’ve had or will have your breast(s) removed as treatment for breast cancer, breast reconstruction can help you find healing and closure and also give you back your womanly figure.
The Choices Available to You
There are two choices available to you for your breast reconstruction: autologous reconstruction or implant reconstruction. Autologous breast reconstruction harvests tissue from your abdomen (called a TRAM flap) or back (called a Lat flap) to rebuild the breast form. The autologous approach may be best for healthier patients who are having a single mastectomy. Implant reconstruction is a two-stage procedure. In the first stage of the surgery, a tissue expander is temporarily placed after the mastectomy to prepare the breast for a permanent implant. Several months later, in the second stage of the surgery, the tissue expander is replaced with a permanent breast implant. This approach may be best for patients who have a double mastectomy or who desire a shorter recovery. Our surgeons can help you decide which procedure will be best for your needs.
The Benefits of Breast Reconstruction
Breast reconstruction reforms the removed breast(s) so that women can reclaim their feminine figures. Dr. Oliver and Dr. Jack at our Birmingham practice use advanced surgical techniques, technologies, and devices to produce the best aesthetic results with breast reconstruction. The final steps in your breast reconstruction will include nipple reconstruction and may also include permanent medical tattooing to recreate the appearance of the areola, fat grafting to correct contour irregularities, and even nipple-sparing mastectomies in appropriate patients. With breast reconstruction, you can experience the closure you deserve and retain your feminine, womanly body shape after breast cancer.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. If you or someone close to you suffers from breast cancer, breast reconstruction can provide emotional healing and restore breasts that have been surgically removed as part of your cancer treatment. To learn more about this procedure, schedule your personal consultation with Dr. Oliver or Dr. Jack. Both of our surgeons have extensive training, experience, and sensitivity in performing breast reconstruction. To schedule your appointment, please call (205) 298-8660 today or fill out our online contact form at your convenience.
September 13th, 2016 Plastic Surgery Specialists
If you’re unhappy with your nose, you may be able to improve it with nose surgery. Nose surgery, or rhinoplasty, can be performed for many different reasons and can dramatically improve the appearance and function of the nose. Here are eight excellent reasons to consider rhinoplasty.
1. Improve the Proportions of the Nose and Facial Features
Many people feel that their noses are too big or too small. Rhinoplasty can improve the proportions of the nose and facial features by adjusting the size of the nose. This may require the removal of nasal tissue or improvements to nasal prominence so that the nose appears well-balanced with the other features of the face.
2. Reduce the Size of a Large or Wide Nose
Complaints about the nose being too large or too wide are also quite common. Nose surgery can minimize the nose or adjust nasal height so that the nose looks narrower or smaller. These changes can also improve the proportions of the facial features.
3. Correct a Dorsal Hump/Bump or Depression on the Bridge of the Nose
Whether genetic or caused by injury, a dorsal hump/bump or depression on the bridge of the nose can affect your appearance from the front and profile. Rhinoplasty can smooth out the nasal bridge so that it appears straight and flat.
4. Reform a Crooked, Elongated, or Bulbous Nasal Tip
In some cases, it is the tip of the nose that causes dissatisfaction. Whether the tip of the nose is crooked, elongated, bulbous, or otherwise lacking in aesthetic appeal, rhinoplasty can reform the tip so that it looks more natural and draws less attention to itself.
5. Restore a Nose That Has Been Damaged From an Accident or Sports Injury
Accidental nasal injuries such as those that can occur in sports activities can also be corrected with rhinoplasty. Nose surgery can correct the issues that occurred and restore a more natural-looking nose after an unfortunate injury.
6. Help With Breathing Problems by Rebuilding the Nasal Passage
Rhinoplasty can also improve the functionality of the nose as well as its appearance. Nasal breathing may be inhibited by a blocked or partially blocked nasal passage. Rhinoplasty surgery can rebuild the nasal passage so that oxygen can flow more freely through the nasal airways. If this is your reason for considering rhinoplasty, you may be able to receive insurance coverage for your procedure.
7. Treat Nasal Deformities Present Since Birth
Congenital nasal deformities can also be corrected with rhinoplasty. Insurance companies may cover rhinoplasty to correct nasal deformities that have been present since birth.
8. Change the Angle of the Nasal Bridge
The angle of your nasal bridge can significantly impact your appearance. A nasal bridge that is too flat or too angled can affect the overall appearance of your face. Rhinoplasty can adjust the angle of the nasal bridge so that your face is balanced and the angle of your nose is more attractive from both the front and side views.
Rhinoplasty can also improve nostril size and many other characteristics of the nose. If you are interested in learning more about how rhinoplasty could help you, schedule your consultation with either Dr. Oliver or Dr. Jack here at Birmingham Plastic Surgery. Please call our office at (205) 298-8660 or complete our online contact form to book your appointment today.
August 4th, 2016 Plastic Surgery Specialists
While generally motivational, the old adage “If at first you don’t succeed, try and try again” doesn’t always lead to success. Many individuals who have “tried and tried again” to lose stubborn fat through dieting and exercise simply haven’t achieved their desired outcome. Nonetheless, you needn’t be concerned that there is no way to pull off your aesthetic aspirations. For qualifying candidates, liposuction can eliminate localized fat deposits and help you create the body contours you want. All of the following requirements are necessary for good candidates to have a successful procedure and to achieve good results.
Good candidates have stubborn fat deposits that have not responded to diet or exercise.
While not a weight-loss procedure, liposuction is a fat-removal procedure. This procedure gets rid of fat stored in localized areas, such as the lower abdomen, thighs, upper arms, hips, and back. These areas are difficult to target with diet and exercise, but liposuction can remove the accumulated excess fat and give you a more slender body contour.
Good candidates have good health.
Liposuction is a surgical procedure, and with any surgery comes the risk of complications. These risks are small for healthy individuals, but if your health is compromised by a chronic medical condition or even a temporary illness, you are not a good candidate for liposuction.
Good candidates have realistic expectations.
Liposuction can produce excellent, noticeable results and may significantly improve your body contour. However, the procedure can’t turn you into someone else or give you an entirely different body shape. For example, if you have naturally wide hips and you undergo liposuction on your hips, you may still look wider than someone who has naturally narrow hips because of your skeletal structure and your anatomic realities. Good candidates for liposuction must have realistic expectations about their bodies and how they will respond to liposuction.
Good candidates have good skin tone/quality.
Individuals with poor skin quality or stretched skin in their target areas may not be good candidates for liposuction. Liposuction does not affect the skin, but removing fat from areas with poor skin tone or quality can cause the skin to appear loose or empty after treatment. The best aesthetic results are attained by those with naturally firm and tight skin that will naturally retract over the treated areas once the fat has been removed.
Good candidates are at or near their ideal body weight.
Liposuction is not a weight-loss procedure. In order to achieve the best results, you should already be at or near your ideal body weight. Liposuction will help you contour those areas that are difficult to target so you can complete your journey toward achieving your ideal body contours.
Good candidates already live a healthy lifestyle.
A person who yo-yo diets, who does not exercise, or whose weight fluctuates regularly is a poor candidate for liposuction. A stable body weight is necessary to have the best results after liposuction, and a healthy lifestyle is essential for maintaining the results. If you do not live a healthy lifestyle, the results of your liposuction may seem to “go away” within a short period. However, if you eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly, your liposuction results should be long lasting.
Liposuction is a body-sculpting procedure that can give you a slimmer figure with better proportions. If you would like liposuction to eliminate your love handles, saddle bags, spare tire, or other unsightly fat deposits on your body, please schedule your consultation with Dr. Robert Oliver, Jr. or Dr. Jason Jack. Dr. Oliver and Dr. Jack are both board-certified plastic surgeons and would be pleased to assist you and answer all of your questions about liposuction. To schedule your appointment, call (205) 298-8660 today or fill out our online contact form at your earliest convenience.
July 22nd, 2016 Plastic Surgery Specialists
Fine lines, wrinkles, and volume loss in the face are among the first noticeable signs of aging. These markers clearly distinguish between a face that is youthful and a face that is more “mature.” JUVÉDERM® is an FDA-approved dermal filler that can soften the signs of facial aging and fashion a more youthful appearance.
What Is JUVÉDERM®?
JUVÉDERM® is a family of dermal fillers that can be safely injected into the face. JUVÉDERM® Ultra, JUVÉDERM® Ultra XC, JUVÉDERM® Ultra Plus, and JUVÉDERM VOLUMA® XC are a few of the products in the JUVÉDERM® family. Each JUVÉDERM® product is a smooth gel made of hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid, or HA, is a naturally-occurring substance that improves skin volume and hydration. HA fillers like JUVÉDERM® can improve facial wrinkles, hollows, and other signs of aging. A single treatment session with JUVÉDERM® takes fewer than 30 minutes to perform and produces immediate results with no downtime. Results typically last up to one year, and follow-up treatments can maintain the results.
The Many Uses and Benefits of JUVÉDERM®
JUVÉDERM® effectively corrects signs of facial aging. One of these is natural cheek volume loss, which is also known as age-related midface volume loss. JUVÉDERM® injections to the cheek area can increase volume deep beneath the surface of the skin so that the cheeks appear more lifted, full, and youthful. JUVÉDERM® can also be used to fill in deep hollows beneath the eyes. Another popular use of JUVÉDERM® is softening the appearance of wrinkles such as smile lines and parentheses lines (nasolabial folds). The hyaluronic acid within JUVÉDERM® improves skin hydration and volume so that lines are softened and textural irregularities become smoother. Finally, JUVÉDERM® can also be used to augment the lips and perioral area so that the lips appear fuller. JUVÉDERM® produces natural-looking, long-lasting results that can help you look more youthful and rejuvenated.
JUVÉDERM® can minimize signs of facial aging such as volume loss and wrinkles. Board-certified plastic surgeons Dr. Jason Jack and Dr. Robert Oliver, Jr. offer JUVÉDERM® injections here at our practice. To schedule your consultation for JUVÉDERM® injections with Dr. Jack or Dr. Oliver, please call (205) 298-8660 or complete our online contact form today.
June 20th, 2016 Plastic Surgery Specialists
Ear surgery is a cosmetic procedure that can improve the appearance of your ears. Whether you are a child or an adult, ear surgery can correct any of the following issues so that your ears look more natural and aesthetically pleasing.
1. Overly Large Ears
Ear surgery can reduce the size of overly large ears. Through removal of ear cartilage and reshaping the remaining cartilage, your plastic surgeon can make your ears look more balanced with the rest of your features.
2. Overly Protruding Ears
Some ears may be a normal size but protrude excessively from the side of the head. Ears that “stick out” can lead to ridicule and body image issues that may damage the psyche. Ear surgery can remove excess cartilage and soften overly protruding ears so that they lie flatter against the head.
3. Misshapen Earlobes
Earlobes can be misshapen for any number of reasons. They may be genetically large or small, altered from heavy earrings, torn due to injury, or otherwise misshapen. Ear surgery can recreate a more natural-looking earlobe for each ear.
4. Folded Ear Tips (Lop Ear)
Folded ear tips (lop ear) are characterized by the top part of each ear being folded over, which creates a drooping appearance. This inherited condition can also be corrected with ear surgery.
5. Unusually Small Ears
While unusually small ears are less common than overly large ears, they may also give you a less attractive appearance. Using cartilage from the ribs, small ears can be reformed and reshaped so that they are larger and more balanced with your other features.
6. Congenital Defects
In addition to the above issues, other congenital defects may also cause the ears to look abnormal. Examples include microtia (where one or both ears are underdeveloped), anotia (where one or both outer ears are missing), Stahl’s ear (where the outer ear is pointed), cryptotia (where the upper ear is underneath the scalp skin), and more. Ear surgery can correct these congenital issues and restore a more natural ear appearance.
7. Ear Injuries
Ear injuries can leave lasting damage to the structure of the ear, in some cases even leading to the loss of an ear. With ear surgery, the injured or lost ear can be reshaped or reconstructed to restore natural facial balance.
If you or someone you love has one of the above ear issues, ear surgery can help. Schedule your consultation with Dr. Jack or Dr. Oliver to learn more about how ear surgery could improve the appearance of your ears. Call (205) 298-8660 or fill out our online contact form to get in touch with us today.
May 11th, 2016 Plastic Surgery Specialists
If you are like most women who have had children, you probably lament how pregnancy has affected your body. One area in particular that may be suffering after pregnancy is your abdomen. A tummy tuck can eliminate the excess fat, stretched skin, stretch marks, and weak stomach muscles after pregnancy and restore a smooth, firm tummy.
Eliminate Stretched Abdominal Skin
Once stretched, your skin does not necessarily regain its former elasticity and strength. This is why mothers and those who have lost massive amounts of weight are often left with sagging, stretched-out stomach skin. The tummy tuck procedure removes this hanging abdominal skin to flatten the stomach after pregnancy.
Get Rid of Stretch Marks
The stretching of your abdomen as a baby grows within your body occurs rapidly over the nine months of pregnancy. Due to the speed at which your skin is forced to stretch, it is no wonder that a mother’s abdomen is often riddled with stretch marks. When excess skin is removed during the tummy tuck procedure, many of your stretch marks will be removed along with it.
Remove Unwanted Fat
Stubborn belly fat is common even without pregnancy, and it is even more common after pregnancy. When exercise and dieting fail to eliminate unwanted lower belly fat, a tummy tuck can remove this localized fat. Liposuction and surgical excision may both be utilized to rid the waistline of unsightly pockets of fat and create a smoother and flatter abdomen.
Tighten Weak Stomach Muscles
Diastasis recti is a common pregnancy-related condition in which the muscles of the abdominal wall separate and become flaccid. This condition creates the appearance of a looser stomach and can make you continue to look pregnant for long after the birth of your child. Tummy tuck surgery tightens the stomach wall to improve your core strength and create a firmer, tighter waist.
The tummy tuck procedure can help women whose abdomens have become stretched out, weak, and flaccid after pregnancy. If your tummy is a bit worse for the wear after pregnancy and you are interested in experiencing the benefits of tummy tuck surgery, schedule your consultation with Dr. Jack or Dr. Oliver. Call us at (205) 298-8660 or complete our online contact form, and we will help you book your appointment today.
April 13th, 2016 Plastic Surgery Specialists
If you’re considering getting a tummy tuck, you can look forward to striking results. You will have a newly contoured waistline with tighter core muscles and no loose skin or fat bulges. While you will achieve excellent results by the sole merit of your procedure, you should follow these suggestions if you want to achieve the best results with your tummy tuck procedure.
What to Do Before Surgery
Achieving the best results begins with your actions before you undergo surgery. Every candidate for tummy tuck surgery should quit smoking and avoid it entirely for at least one month before and at least six weeks after surgery. Additionally, candidates should prepare their bodies to handle the procedure and welcome the results. This means that regular exercise and a healthy diet must become a permanent part of your life. A tummy tuck is not weight-loss surgery; it is a procedure meant to improve the waistline of patients who are already at or near their ideal body weight. You should achieve and maintain a stable, healthy weight to prepare your body for the greatest results.
What to Do During Recovery
The next part in achieving the best results is what you do during recovery. Carefully follow all instructions and recommendations that your surgeon gives you. Avoid strenuous exercises for at least six weeks, and avoid abdominal exercises for a full 12 weeks. Take your medications as instructed, wait at least 10 to 14 days to return to work, and consult us if you have any questions.
How to Minimize Scarring
Some patients are concerned about how scarring after a tummy tuck will affect their results. The scar from your incision will be hidden by most clothing and will fade as time passes. To minimize your scar, take care to follow your recovery instructions. Avoid smoking and direct sun exposure so that your scar heals properly and does not darken. You can also use creams, lotions, or silicone patches as instructed to reduce scarring.
How to Maintain Your Results
Lastly, adopt healthy habits to maintain your results. Your results from tummy tuck surgery can be long lasting if you maintain your body weight. Continue to exercise regularly and eat a healthy diet with lots of protein, fruits, and vegetables to have the greatest and longest-lasting results.
Following these recommendations will help you achieve and maintain the best results from your tummy tuck procedure. To learn more about tummy tuck surgery, schedule your consultation with Dr. Oliver or Dr. Jack. Call our office at (205) 298-8660 or fill out our online contact form to schedule your appointment today.
March 9th, 2016 Plastic Surgery Specialists
Women of all ages may become victims of breast sagging. Pregnancy and nursing can alter the natural form and position of the breasts. Aging causes skin laxity and eventual breast sagging in older women. Hormones, genetics, and weight fluctuations can cause breasts to sag in women of all ages. Below are some reasons to improve the appearance of your breasts by getting a breast lift.
1) Elevate the Breasts
A breast lift can elevate breasts that have begun to sag due to aging and gravity. By removing the excess lax skin, the breasts can be repositioned and elevated to a more aesthetically pleasing position.
2) Enhance Breast Shape
Pregnancy, breastfeeding, and other factors can cause the breasts to flatten or become elongated and pendulous. The breast tissues can be pulled up and together to reshape the breasts into a more natural, nicely rounded breast shape.
3) Restore Your Image
Breast sagging may harm your body image and cause you to feel less confident. Undergoing breast lift surgery can improve the appearance of your breasts so that you look and feel more attractive.
4) Restore Youthful Curves
Whether you desire to bring back your pre-baby curves or you would like to look and feel younger than you are, a breast lift can restore youthful, feminine curves.
5) Reduce the Size of the Areolas
For some women with breast sagging, the areolas also become stretched out and enlarged. Breast lift surgery can reduce the size of the areolas so that they look more natural and balanced in proportion with the surrounding breast tissue.
6) Reposition and Realign the Nipple-Areola Complex
In many cases of breast sagging, the nipples and areolas point downward or to the side. Breast lift surgery can reposition and realign the nipple-areola complexes so that the breasts appear more youthful and balanced.
7) Firm the Breasts
A loss of breast volume after pregnancy, breastfeeding, or weight loss may cause the breasts to feel deflated. Removing excess breast tissue and repositioning the remaining tissue can firm the breasts so that they feel more naturally supple and substantial.
8) Achieve Breast Symmetry
If the breasts are asymmetrical, whether one breast sags more than the other, one breast is elongated, or one areola is stretched out, a breast lift can restore symmetry and balance to your figure.
If you have breast sagging, schedule your consultation for breast lift surgery to learn more about how to improve the appearance of your breasts. To book your consultation with Dr. Oliver or Dr. Jack, call (205) 298-8660 or fill out our online contact form today.
February 16th, 2016 Plastic Surgery Specialists
Tex Avery’s iconic character “Droopy” is an animated, anthropomorphic dog known for moving lethargically and speaking in a monotone voice. While he surprises us with his wit, strength, and comedic humor, his droopy appearance remains constant with his half-closed eyes, wrinkled forehead, and sagging jowls. However endearing you find Droopy’s character, his appearance is likely not one you’d like to emulate. If your aging eyes have begun to take on a similar droopy look, it may be time to consider eyelid surgery.
Correcting a Droopy, Sleepy Look
A droopy, sleepy look like Droopy’s is usually attributed to the appearance of the eyes due to the surrounding skin. Fine lines, wrinkles, skin laxity, and volume loss can all coalesce to form a tired, sad, and lethargic appearance. The way to correct this is through blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery). Eyelid surgery can reduce bags under the eyes, remove sagging skin and excess fat, eliminate wrinkles, and brighten the look of the eyes. During lower eyelid surgery, excess skin and loose tissues are removed or tightened, and puffiness and bags under the eyes are eliminated. By improving the appearance of your eyes with eyelid surgery, you will look less like Droopy and look more youthful, awake, and happy.
Correcting Vision Obstruction
Some people with droopy eyelids suffer from vision obstruction. When excess upper eyelid skin begins to sag, it can create a hood over the eyes that interferes with your line of sight. This can also cause irritation from the skin of the upper eyelids rubbing together as well as discomfort from continually straining to lift the forehead and brow muscles to be able to see better. Upper blepharoplasty can remove this excess skin to improve sightlines and proper vision function. You will not only appear more awake and rested, but you will also have a clearer line of sight while performing daily tasks and communicating with others.
Eyelid surgery can correct droopy eyelids and restore a more youthful and rested appearance. Patients who undergo blepharoplasty often see improvements in their self-image along with their improved line of sight and appearance. Schedule your consultation for eyelid surgery today with one of our board-certified plastic surgeons, Dr. Robert I. Oliver, Jr. or Dr. Jason M. Jack. Please call (205) 298-8660 or fill out our online contact form to schedule your appointment today.
January 28th, 2016 Plastic Surgery Specialists
Women who have had to undergo surgery for breast cancer can experience emotional healing with breast reconstruction. Using different surgical approaches, breast reconstruction can reconstruct one or both breast masses and nipples after they have been surgically removed. Below are the two main approaches to breast reconstruction and the candidates best suited for each type.
For autologous reconstruction, the doctor will harvest tissue from either your abdomen or your back, and this tissue will be used to rebuild the breast mound. This approach includes the more commonly referred to “TRAM” flap procedure, in which abdominal skin and fat are harvested, and the “lat” flap procedure, in which the latissimus back muscle tissue is harvested. The tissue is extracted and then moved to the chest, where it is reshaped and reattached to recreate the appearance of the breast mound. This tissue provides a good substitute that can look and feel quite natural in place of the breast, and results will usually last a lifetime.
Ideal Candidates for Autologous Reconstruction
Ideal candidates for autologous breast reconstruction will be in good health after their mastectomy. Autologous reconstruction is best suited for those who have undergone a single mastectomy rather than a double mastectomy because the reconstructed breast tissue will mature like natural breast tissue. Candidates will need to have enough excess tissue to extract for this breast reconstruction approach. For women who have undergone a single mastectomy and whose remaining healthy breast is large, autologous reconstruction may not be able to harvest sufficient tissue to achieve breast symmetry. In this case, autologous reconstruction may be combined with implant reconstruction, or a breast reduction can be performed on the healthy breast to achieve symmetry.
Implant Reconstruction With Tissue Expander
The implant reconstruction with tissue expander approach is performed in two stages. In stage one, a tissue expander or temporary breast implant device is placed in the breast pocket after the mastectomy. This tissue expander helps to prepare the skin and tissues to hold a future permanent breast implant. Stage two is usually performed about four to six months after stage one and replaces the tissue expander with a permanent breast implant. With this technique, the implant or implants may need to be replaced at some point in the future. The breast implant reconstruction with tissue expander approach may also require alteration of the healthy breast in order to achieve symmetry. Recovery and length of surgery are usually shorter with this approach than with autologous reconstruction, as only the chest area is surgically altered.
Ideal Candidates for Implant Reconstruction With Tissue Expander
Ideal candidates for implant reconstruction with tissue expander will not need radiation therapy for their breast cancer treatment. This approach is best suited for patients who must undergo a double mastectomy. This procedure avoids creating incisions in other areas of the body and is appropriate for those who want or need an easier or shorter recovery experience with breast reconstruction. Dr. Oliver and Dr. Jack are both well experienced and trained in performing each of these surgical techniques for breast reconstruction. When you come in for your consultation, the doctor will go over your medical history and recommend the treatment that he feels is best for you and your needs. In many cases, breast reconstruction will be conducted in multiple stages in order to achieve the best results. With breast reconstruction, you can receive the closure and emotional healing you need after overcoming breast cancer.
To learn more about breast reconstruction after mastectomy, contact our office to schedule your consultation with one of our board-certified plastic surgeons, Dr. Robert I. Oliver, Jr. or Dr. Jason M. Jack. Please call (205) 298-8660 or fill out our online contact form to schedule your appointment today.