Author: Ali Loreen, MD

Breast Reconstruction After Fighting Cancer: What to Know

If you are about to have cancer surgery, you have more difficult decisions to make. Once you have gotten over the shock of the diagnosis, now they want you to make more plans about your life and your body. Should you have breast reconstruction simultaneously with your cancer surgery, or should you wait? Should you have it at all? Let’s look at breast reconstruction after fighting cancer.

It Is Your Decision

Most women dealing with breast cancer feel like they have lost all control: control of their body, their life, and their future. Making a decision about breast reconstruction can help you regain some of that control.

You have several options:

  • You can choose to have reconstructive breast surgery.
  • You can choose not to have reconstructive surgery.
  • You can decide to have it at the same time as you have cancer surgery, known as immediate reconstruction.
  • You can decide to wait, known as delayed reconstruction.

Some women are overwhelmed and just don’t want to make a decision right now. It is understandable, but before you do, have a consultation with a plastic surgeon. Someone like Dr. Loreen Ali can walk you through all the pros and cons of each choice. It is recommended that you do this before your cancer surgery even if you decide to have it delayed.

Regardless of what you decide, you are taking back some control over your life.

Benefits of Reconstructive Breast Surgery

Whether you are having a lumpectomy or a mastectomy, breast reconstruction can give you back the shape and symmetry of one or both breasts.

Something every breast cancer patient needs is self confidence and self esteem. You want to look as normal as possible in all your clothes and especially a swimsuit. Know your options and talk with Dr. Loreen Ali about what is right for you.

Other benefits of reconstructive surgery include the following:

  • It helps to restore the look of your breasts before surgery.
  • Eliminates the need for a prosthesis.
  • The breasts will look and feel like the natural part of your body.
  • You will feel more like a woman with symmetric breasts.

Who Are the Best Candidates for Breast Reconstruction?

You must be a healthy non-smoker to be considered for breast reconstruction.

Although it won’t disqualify you from the surgery, smoking, being overweight, having diabetes, or high blood pressure may cause complications post surgery.

If you want to know more from women who have been there, click this link for additional information.

Contact New England Plastic Surgery Center to schedule a breast reconstruction surgery consultation in Chelmsford and discuss the best options for you. Give us a call at (978) 942-4835 or request an appointment through our secure online form.

Benefits Of An Arm Lift

Summertime brings out gorgeous flowers, encourages lazy afternoons, and is a time for wearing those fabulous sleeveless maxi dresses. For some women, the first two may be true, but for others, there will be no wearing anything sleeveless for another summer season. You know who you are.

You may be embarrassed by the size of your upper arms, but you have a couple of solutions. You can continue to wear cardigans and jackets for another season, or you can consider the benefits of an arm lift or Brachioplasty.

What Is Brachioplasty?

Arm lift surgery or Brachioplasty is a surgical procedure that reshapes the under portion of the upper arm from the underarm to the elbow. Excess skin is removed to achieve the desired improved contour and taut upper arms of your youth. Sometimes known as bat wings, this disproportionate upper arm is both aesthetically unappealing and can present hygiene issues.

The fat, tissue, and excess skin can be removed to give you the upper arm you will want to flaunt. Your upper arm will have a smoother contour.

Good Candidates For An Arm Lift

There are a number of factors that make certain men and women good candidates for an arm lift.

They include some of the following:

  • Genetics: you can exercise till the cows come home, but you will still have that sagging excess skin under your arms. Many women get that “genetic gift” from their mothers.
  • Age contributes to skin losing its elasticity.
  • If you have lost a significant amount of weight, you can end up with loose hanging underarm skin.

In addition, a suitable candidate must be at a stable healthy weight, be a non-smoker, and have no issues with healing.

Benefits An Arm Lift or Brachioplasty

The benefits of an arm lift can be physical, aesthetic, and psychological.

  • It reduces sagging skin and tightens and smooths supportive tissue under the arm.
  • Improves your comfort level after weight loss or weight loss surgery.
  • Prevents inflammation and rashes due to excess folds of skin which can sometimes lead to infection.
  • Eliminates problems with hygiene.
  • Improves self-esteem.

Of course, any surgical procedure comes with risks, but if you desire the arms you once had (or always wanted), maybe it’s time to find out if you are a good candidate for an arm lift.

Contact New England Plastic Surgery Center for a consultation to determine if you are a good candidate for an arm lift and to discuss your personal benefits.

Alternative Treatments to Avoid Filler Fatigue

You know it when you see it. That woman on the street or that once gorgeous movie star who now is unrecognizable from both fillers and plastic surgery. Not everyone has perfect genes like Audrey Hepburn with her simple untouched beauty. If you’re too young to know who she was, look up her photos. We all want to look younger as we age, and fillers became the rage until they were overdone. Now there are some alternative treatments to avoid filler fatigue.

Filler Fatigue and Pillow Face

Aging and lifestyle reduces the collagen and elastin in our skin causing wrinkles and facial volume loss. Fillers have been an alternative to improve your appearance.

Many turned away from face lift surgery due to cost and fear of looking unnatural. Women were promised natural looking results with fillers, and yet the opposite has happened: lips that are too full and pouty, and faces that are puffy. Fillers have betrayed their promise. You can end up with a swollen looking finish rather than a sculptured result.

Part of the problem has been the lack of control over how much filler is used and the timing of re-treatments. Most fillers like hyaluronic acid can last 12-24 months. Most suggest getting a re-treatment at 12 months. There has been over-treatment in hyaluronic acid filler in lips, cheeks, naso-labral folds and anywhere else on the face.

This can result in puffy faces, a decrease in elasticity, and the creation of an unnaturally wide face.

The “fix” is multi-part:

  • Fillers need to be administered by someone who has a great deal of experience like board-certified plastic surgeon Loreen Ali, MD
  • Fillers need to be used in moderation.
  • Prevent excessive use since it can cause an unharmonious appearance.

Rather than patients asking for a certain amount of filler, injectors should be educating the patient on what is safe and the best treatment for them.

What Are Alternative Treatments to Fillers?

Women are now looking for alternatives to fillers which will last a reasonable amount of time and look more natural.

Some suggest microneedling as an alternative and a way to improve collagen. The goal is to get as close to a natural look as possible. The best results may be a combination of injectables, other treatments, and effective skin care products to increase collagen as a way to look great as one ages.

A growing trend is starting with facelifts earlier in life and consider these mini-facelifts a way to maintain a younger appearance.

A brow lift or blepharoplasty are other options. Yes, these are surgeries but quite different from your mother’s facelift. There is usually a shorter recovery time, and they can make a noticeable difference in your look without being too obvious.

A brow lift will still give you the ability to lift your brows and show expression, but without all the horizontal forehead lines. Whereas a blepharoplasty will eliminate the fat deposits and extra skin in the upper lid. That can make a world of difference in your overall appearance.

If you are having filler fatigue, it’s time to try other ways to maintain a youthful look.

Contact New England Plastic Surgery Center at (978) 942-4835 for a consultation in Chelmsford and discover the best treatment options for you. You can alternatively request an appointment through our secure online form.

Do I Need to Lose Weight Before a Breast Reduction?

Anyone preparing to have breast reduction surgery is given a list of do’s and don’ts prior to the procedure. Your surgeon may instruct you to not smoke or vape for a period of time, not take any aspirin or other anti-inflammatory meds, and to have a driver to bring you home among others. What about weight loss? Do I need to lose weight before a breast reduction?

Main Reasons Women Have Breast Reduction

A woman who has decided to pursue breast reduction surgery has many reasons for doing so.

Some common reasons include:

  • Pain felt in the shoulders and back
  • Wants to fit better into favorite clothes
  • Wants a slimmer silhouette
  • Wants to enhance athletic performance

Of course some women have additional reasons for wanting to reduce the size of their breasts.

Ideal Weight Considerations

Many surgeons will tell you that it’s better to be at or close to your ideal weight prior to breast reduction surgery. It’s important to discuss this with a board-certified plastic surgeon before making a decision.

It will help your surgery be safer and will minimize complications, and weight does affect the risk of complications. If you are wanting to lose anywhere from 25 to 30 pounds and you can’t decide whether to do it before or after surgery, it is better to do it before.

A study in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery looked at 675 patients and the number of complications. There was a significant link between complication rate and body mass index (BMI). Complications increased significantly for those with a BMI of over 35, considered obese.

The same for other risk factors like having diabetes or a history of smoking.

BMI Standards Based on Height and Weight:

  • Underweight = 18.5
  • Healthy = 18.6 – 24.9
  • Overweight = 25 – 29.9
  • Obese = 30 +

You can calculate your personal BMI here.

Waiting to Lose Weight Until After Breast Reduction
In most cases, any weight you lose after your surgery is performed will come off your breasts too. This can cause a change in breast size and shape leading to loss of firmness or laxity in your breasts. You could end up with sagging breasts afterward. That would be suboptimal.

Again, discuss all this with your plastic surgeon and follow all recommendations prior to your surgery.

Contact Loreen Ali, MD at New England Plastic Surgery Center to schedule a consultation in Chelmsford if you are considering breast reduction surgery. Give us a call at (978) 942-4835 or request an appointment through our secure online form.

What Is the Recovery Time for Breast Augmentation?

You have been dreaming about larger, fuller, more appealing-looking breasts for years. Now that you have found board-certified plastic surgeon Loreen Ali, MD in Chelmsford, you feel confident and are ready to proceed. Your list of questions has been answered, but one is still outstanding: what is the recovery time for breast augmentation? Keep reading if you want to know that answer too.

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What Is a Thigh Lift? Thighplasty Surgery Guide

If you have reached your goal weight and plan to stay there, congratulations! Maybe you had weight loss surgery or lost it on your own, but after all that work, there is still a problem with your thighs. Your inner thighs are constantly rubbing together causing chafing and discomfort. Skin is sagging from the lost weight and you need help. What is a thigh lift? Our thighplasty surgery guide will provide all the details.

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Am I a Candidate for Liposuction?

The COVID-19 pandemic made liposuction the most popular type of plastic surgery in the US in 2021 and 2022. Working from home and the closure of gyms across the country caused many people to see an increase of fat on their bodies. When the pandemic was over, there was a rush to have fat patches removed through liposuction. If this sounds familiar, you might be asking, am I a candidate for liposuction?

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What Is Typically Included in a Mommy Makeover?

Mommy makeovers have been gaining in popularity, and why not? Once a woman has completed her family and isn’t planning to have any more children, she begins to bring some focus back to her and what she wants. Specifically, she wants to have a body that’s pre-pregnancy. Easier said than done, most women will tell you, and that’s exactly why mommy makeovers are in such demand. If this describes you, let’s discover what is typically included in a mommy makeover and what might be right for you.

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When To Book A Mommy Makeover After Pregnancy

You adore your child, you can’t find enough time to be with them, but you definitely don’t love what you see in the mirror. Pregnancy changes not only your life, but your body. Fortunately, the changes to your body don’t have to be forever. You can do something about that with a mommy makeover. Let’s find out when to book a mommy makeover after pregnancy.

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