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What to Expect from Common Plastic Surgery

Posted in Breast, Plastic Surgery

woman holding face posing

Despite what you may see on TV, plastic surgery doesn’t end with a doctor removing bandages and handing the patient a mirror to reveal their new face. Even the smallest procedures require post-surgical care and weeks or months of recovery time. Before you undergo any plastic surgery procedure, make sure you know what to expect and the steps you must take after surgery to help you achieve the look you deserve. Here’s a look a some of the most common plastic surgery procedures we offer at Livingston Plastic Surgery.

Breast Augmentation

Breast augmentation surgery begins with a small incision either in the crease of your breast, under your arm, or around your nipple. After the incision, the surgeon separates your breast tissue from your chest muscle and connective tissue and inserts the breast implant.

Overall, the recovery process for breast enhancement is relatively simple. Some swelling and scarring will occur immediately following surgery.  Scarring will fade in a couple of weeks, as long as you follow your doctor’s advice and take proper care of the affected area. While most patients are able to return to work within a week after the procedure, strenuous activity such as exercise will need to wait three to four weeks to ensure your healing progresses properly.Patients should keep in mind it is not uncommon for breast implants to require replacement as the implants and your body age.

Breast Reduction

Breast reduction surgery is a more complex procedure than receiving implants. Instead of just one incision, breast reduction surgery requires a series of incisions around the breast and areolas. Once the incisions are completed, the excess breast tissue, fat, and skin are reduced and reshaped to create a more proportional appearance. In some instances, your areolas may even require repositioning in order to maintain alignment with the blood vessels and nerves.

The recovery time after breast reduction surgery is about the same as that of breast augmentation. However, more incisions mean more stitches and bandages, and patients typically experience some soreness in the weeks that follow. On a positive note, the back and shoulder pain your breasts were causing should dissipate almost instantly. Your breasts may appear slightly asymmetrical two to three months after the procedure.

Patients should be aware thatbreast reduction isn’t necessarily a one-and-done surgery—over 30% of patients require additional surgery after the initial procedure.


Liposuction is one of the most popular cosmetic surgeries on the market, with over 200,000 patients receiving the treatment each year. However, liposuction isn’t right for everybody. In order to clear you for liposuction, your doctor must first meet with you to discuss your goals, medical history, and procedure eligibility. Should your doctor deem you a suitable candidate for liposuction, it’s important you have a thorough understanding of what the procedure will entail.

Liposuction involves a series of small incisions on your body’s target trouble spots. After these incisions are made, a solution comprised of saline, anesthetic, and vasoconstriction medication is injected into each area to help ensure a smoother recovery process. From there, a hollow tube (called a cannula) is inserted into the incisions to remove the excess fat.

While your physical recovery may be just one week or less, achieving your desired results requires a few more steps. To help your skin conform to your body’s new shape, you will be fitted with a compression garment for up to six weeks following the procedure. Swelling and bruising may be visible up to three months after the procedure.

Liposuction is not a cure-all for obesity. The results from liposuction can be permanent, but not without proper diet and exercise.


Even in the dynamic world of plastic surgery, facelifts have remained a popular option for those looking to renew their look. Whether you want to look younger, or simply wish to fix a frustrating feature, a facelift offers many options for those seeking facial rejuvenation.

A facelift (or rhytidectomy) begins with several small incisions around your designated trouble areas. From there, displaced fat is removed and redistributed as necessary to attain your desired results. Once the muscles and tissue have been appropriately repositioned, any excess skin is then removed and reshaped to match the new contours of your face.

After facelift surgery, it will be at least two weeks before you are able to see your results. During that time, you will need to wear a special cooling mask to help your face recover from swelling and bruising. After a two to three-week period of rest and seclusion, you will be able to return to work, but will need to wait at least six weeks before engaging in any strenuous physical activity.

Trust Houston’s Best Plastic Surgeon

No matter which plastic surgery procedure you are interested in, award-winning plastic surgeon Dr. Chris Livingston can provide you with the level of quality and personalized care you deserve. Dr. Livingston provides each patient with an individualized plan to ensure a smooth procedure and recovery. If you’re considering having plastic surgery, contact Livingston Plastic Surgery for a free consultation.