Q: Can one have a face-lift without any visible scars in front of the ear? I have darker skin and like to wear my hair back and up. I am worried that someone may be able to see the scars running down in front of my ears. I need a mini-face-lift, but many results I have seen show the scar in front of the ear.
A: All face-lifts create incisions on the front part of the ear, but where the incisions are made determines how visible the scar will be. Most plastic surgeons place this incision behind the tragus (bump of cartilage in front of the ear canal) of the front part of the ear so the final healed scar is virtually undetectable. A few others, particularly those trained only in mini-face-lift technique, place the incision in front of the tragus so the scar can be potentially detected no matter how well it heals. The latter approach is simpler and makes the operation faster, but it does not lend itself to a better scar result.
Q: I am 21 years old and have lost 65 pounds during the past two years, which has left me with a lot of excess skin and an overhanging abdominal apron. I have been researching tummy tuck surgery to remove it. My main concern is, if I get pregnant in the future, will the tummy tuck scar interfere with my belly stretching during pregnancy?
A: There is no problem with becoming pregnant and having children after a tummy tuck. This is not a rare occurrence at all. The slow stretch of tissues during pregnancy easily expands the abdominal skin. Since you are young and have never had children (and likely will), the muscle should not be tightened during your tummy tuck – only the overhanging skin and fat should be removed. This will make a dramatic change in your waistline and provide years of feeling better about your body.
Q: I have nipples that stick out, and I want them reduced. I’m a 45-year-old man, and I run marathons, so I have to cover my nipples when I run to prevent chafing. I would like to be able to stop wearing adhesive bandages over my nipples during marathons, and I also would like to look better if I’m wearing a thin T-shirt or dress shirt.
A: Nipple reduction is a very simple procedure that offers a permanent solution to the prominent and protruding nipple. I hear stories from men every week who speak to the same problem … “I can’t find shirts that hide my nipples,” or “everyone asks me if I am cold.” Nipple reduction surgery is done in the office under local anesthesia. After the surgery, you only need to wear bandages as dressings for a few days, and you can shower and work out the very next day. Men do not report much, if any, discomfort. Once removed, the nipples will never grow back, and you can wear shirts comfortably or take off your shirt without the embarrassment of nipples that stick out too far.