reading-health-center-2
reading-health-center-2
Plastic and reconstructive logo

« Back to Blog

Eyelid Surgery for Droopy Eyelids

One of the first things people tend to notice about each other is their eyes. As the saying goes, the eyes are windows to the soul, revealing emotion and character. Although the eyes play such an important role in showing others how we feel, what they reveal can be deceptive. Aging that causes droopy upper eyelids can make you appear sleepy, angry, sad, or upset, regardless of how you are truly feeling. If you have perpetually droopy eyelids, upper eyelid surgery can rejuvenate them and refresh your appearance.

Upper Eyelid Surgery Before and After PhotosHow Eyelid Surgery Is Performed

Upper blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery) can correct drooping upper eyelids. To resolve upper eyelid ptosis (sagging), the redundant skin is excised. Fat pads may also be removed to eliminate eyelid hooding. With the removal of excess skin and fat, the upper eyelids will no longer droop. After a recovery period of a few weeks, patients will be able to see significant improvements in the appearance of their upper eyelids and eye area.

Aesthetic Benefits

Eyelid surgery improves the aesthetics of the eye area by correcting the effects of aging. Aging is the most common cause of drooping eyelids (excluding congenital or medical conditions), and it alters the appearance in ways that may be perceived as negative. As a person ages, skin laxity increases, resulting in sagging upper eyelids and wrinkles that can cause the person to have a worn, lethargic appearance. Drooping upper eyelids can also mask your genuine emotions and give you a perpetually upset, sad, or even angry expression. Eyelid surgery corrects this by removing the excess skin, softening wrinkles, and helping the eyes to open up. After eyelid surgery, you will look more awake, approachable, and refreshed. Your eyes will no longer be hidden by baggy upper eyelids, and eyelid ptosis will no longer falsely represent your current state of being.

Functional Benefits

Drooping eyelids that fall significantly lower than normal may affect your vision as well as your appearance. In severe cases, eyelid ptosis can cover part or even all of the pupil, thereby limiting your range of visibility. You may develop discomfort or strain from continually lifting your brows and forehead muscles to make it easier for you to see. With eyelid surgery, upper eyelid hooding is corrected by removing the excess skin and tissue that is sagging, which can improve your ability to see since your vision will no longer be obstructed.

To learn more about eyelid surgery and how it can rejuvenate your appearance, schedule your personal consultation with our board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Benjamin Schlechter. Call (847) 737-5036 or contact us online to request your appointment today.

Arm Lift Techniques

The dreaded bat wings—excess, hanging, flabby skin in the upper arms—can develop even in the healthiest and fittest of individuals. Lost skin elasticity due to weight loss, genetics, and aging can cause the loose skin to hang from the upper arms. Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon Dr. Benjamin Schlechter offers two solutions to improve the contour of your upper arms: traditional brachioplasty (arm lift surgery) or Smartlipo™ (laser arm lift). He will recommend one of these two techniques for you, which will improve your bat wings and restore attractive, slender, and youthful upper arm contours.

Arm Lift Before and After Photos

Brachioplasty

Brachioplasty is the formal name for traditional arm lift surgery. Arm lift surgery is the best technique for patients who need severe correction of sagging skin and tissue, especially after major weight loss. This technique is for those who would trade their bat wings for slender contours with a scar on the inside of the upper arm. Preferred candidates are also in good health, have realistic expectations, and are prepared for a surgical procedure. Patients will need to plan for the recovery, which will take approximately two weeks for significant healing and up to six months for the swelling to subside and the area of the incision to mature.

Arm lift surgery improves upper arm contours by surgically excising the sagging tissues. Dr. Schlechter makes an incision on the inside of the arm so that he can remove the excess tissue. This incision and resulting scar typically extend the full length of the armpit to the elbow, though it may be longer or shorter depending on the amount of skin removed. Dr. Schlechter then removes excess skin and fat to create a tight and smooth upper arm. Dr. Schlechter offers scar management options that can minimize the appearance of the scar.

Laser Arm Lift With Smartlipo™

Smartlipo™ is a method of using laser skin tightening and fat removal to lift and recontour the upper arms. This technique is minimally invasive and is best for candidates with minor to moderate upper arm jiggle. Suitable candidates are in good health, less than 30 pounds overweight, and unable to tighten their upper arms despite exercise and dieting. Candidates should also have realistic expectations and be prepared for the recovery, which could take a few days to a week or longer.  

Smartlipo™ improves upper arm contours by using laser energy to tighten the skin and destroy surplus fat. This technique requires only a single small incision above the elbow, about the size of the tip of a pen. Through this incision, Dr. Schlechter inserts the fine Smartlipo™ laser fiber and delivers laser wavelengths of energy to the tissues. This laser energy melts fat and stimulates collagen production to tighten the skin. The melted fat is gently suctioned out to improve the tone and definition of the upper arms.

Brachioplasty and Smartlipo™ are two proven arm lift techniques that can enhance the definition and contour of the upper arms. Both procedures are highly effective in improving the tone and shape of the arms. If you are not certain which technique you need, Dr. Schlechter can help you determine which of these techniques will be best for you. To schedule your consultation, call (847) 737-5036 or fill out our online contact form today.

A Breast Lift for Large Breasts

Aging, weight loss, and pregnancy are not the only factors that can lead to breast sagging. Large breasts can sag prematurely due to the pull of gravity on the sheer weight of the breast tissue. A breast lift can improve the appearance of the breasts by repositioning the breasts higher on the chest wall.

Dr. Benjamin Schlechter - Breast Lift Before and After Photo

Premature Breast Sagging

Over time, all women can expect some degree of breast sagging. The skin loses elasticity and becomes lax with age, and the weight of the tissues is gradually pulled down by gravity. Premature breast sagging is when breast sagging occurs at an accelerated rate or at a younger-than-expected age. Weight fluctuations, pregnancy, nursing, and an overly large bust size can all lead to premature breast sagging.

How a Breast Lift Can Help

Breast lift surgery is a procedure that lifts sagging, shapeless breasts and reforms them so that they look and feel youthful, perky, and round. Dr. Schlechter has performed numerous breast lift procedures to rejuvenate patients’ appearances. Using an incision technique selected specifically for your needs, Dr. Schlechter will do some or all of the following to improve the appearance of your breasts:

  • Remove sagging, excess skin from around the nipple/areolar complexes
  • Remove sagging, excess skin from the lower breast poles
  • Relocate the nipple/areolar complexes higher on the breasts
  • Reshape the breasts so that they are rounder and more youthful
  • Tighten the remaining skin around the breast tissue to improve breast firmness

Getting a Breast Reduction With Your Breast Lift

If you have premature breast sagging from overly large breasts, you may also suffer from chronic pain or other unpleasant symptoms associated with having oversized breasts. If desired, a breast reduction can be performed with your breast lift to decrease your breast size. During the procedure, Dr. Schlechter will remove excess breast tissue in addition to sagging skin, making the breasts smaller and more lifted at the same time. Getting a breast reduction with your breast lift can alleviate symptoms and reduce the rate of future breast sagging.

Oversized breasts can cause chronic pain, rashes, chafing, premature sagging, self-consciousness, and myriad other issues. Schedule your consultation for breast lift surgery with or without breast reduction to learn how cosmetic surgery could help you. Dr. Benjamin Schlechter is a board-certified plastic surgeon with more than 20 years of experience. He would be more than happy to help you achieve your aesthetic goals. To request your personal consultation with Dr. Schlechter, please call (847) 737-5036 or contact us online today.

Can Liposuction Get Rid of Cellulite?

Cellulite is the dimpled, cottage cheese-like appearance most commonly found on the thighs and buttocks of women. Contrary to popular misconception, liposuction cannot necessarily improve the appearance of cellulite. Cellulaze™ is a proven solution for cellulite that can give you smoother body contours. These two procedures—liposuction and Cellulaze™— complement each other nicely and can be performed in conjunction with each other to dramatically improve the appearance.Cellulaze Treatment for Cellulite Before and After Photos

What Is Cellulite?

Cellulite is not fat; it is a structural problem within the skin. It has to do with the fibrotic bands that connect our muscles and skin. These bands in men are thick and run diagonally, but for women, they are thin and run perpendicularly. When fat cells become larger, men’s fibrotic bands form a mesh pattern that keeps the fat in place. Women’s fibrotic bands, on the other hand, stretch and pull at the skin. This creates the bulging, dimpled appearance that we call cellulite, and many people feel that it detracts from their appearance.

Why Liposuction Can’t Necessarily Help With Cellulite

Liposuction gets rid of excess fat and can produce slender body contours. However, after the excess fat cells are removed from the body, the remaining cells may continue to push at the structural integrity of the skin. Therefore, while the diminished amount of fat cells may potentially improve cellulite, it does not directly address the issue of the fibrotic bands. For this reason, liposuction is a poor solution for cellulite.

Cellulaze™ Is an Effective Treatment for Cellulite

Cellulaze™ is an effective treatment for cellulite because it directly addresses the structural problems of the skin that create cellulite. The treatment delivers laser energy beneath the surface skin, prompting the lower layers of skin to become stronger and thicker and to increase in elasticity. The thermal energy also releases the fibrotic bands so that they do not pull or pucker against the fat cells beneath them. These two solutions cause the skin to lie flatter and smoother, erasing any dimpling. Patients may look as though they have lost fat, but in reality, they have received a specialized skin structural treatment that makes their body contours look smooth and even.

Combine Liposuction and Cellulaze™ for Better Results

Liposuction reduces body fat, and Cellulaze™ reduces cellulite. Combining these procedures can reap even greater rewards. Liposuction slims down body contours and minimizes the amount of fat that puckers against the skin. Cellulaze™ reduces the appearance of cellulite, so that body contours are smooth. Studies of Cellulaze™ indicate promising signs of long-lasting results, and we know that the fat loss achieved with liposuction is permanent. Together, these procedures can give you the smoother, leaner, firmer, and slimmer body contours you desire.

To learn more about cellulite treatment with Cellulaze™ and/or fat removal with liposuction, schedule your consultation with our board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Benjamin Schlechter. Call (847) 737-5036 or complete our online contact form today.

Is There a Non-Surgical Way to Get Rid of Gynecomastia?

Gynecomastia, commonly known as male breast enlargement, is highly bothersome to many of the men who are affected by it. To improve their appearance, men seek out various treatments that claim to eliminate male breasts. While some non-surgical treatments for gynecomastia are helpful, surgery is often the only way to correct gynecomastia. Gynecomastia surgery offers certain, immediate, and permanent elimination of excess breast tissue and fat and improvement of the appearance of the chest.

Gynecomastia Surgery Before and After Photos

The Efficacy of Non-Surgical Treatments for Gynecomastia

Various non-surgical approaches to male breast reduction have surfaced over the years. Some of the more popular methods include:

  • Losing weight
  • Dieting and exercising
  • Abstaining from steroid or drug use
  • Reducing alcohol intake
  • Getting hormone treatments

These treatments can be effective to a some extent. Since hormonal imbalances often lead to male breast development, hormone balancing treatments can help minimize its appearance. Likewise, quitting triggers for gynecomastia (such as steroids, drugs, and excess alcohol consumption) can eliminate the cause of gynecomastia. Weight loss, dieting, and exercising can reduce body fat, which may also decrease the size of male breasts. Some men with gynecomastia who rely on these non-surgical treatments may see the changes they desire.

However, for many men with gynecomastia, male breast reduction without surgery will frequently fall short of success, especially when this condition has persisted long term. For instance, abstaining from certain steroids or drugs may prevent further breast growth, but it will not eliminate the present amount of breast tissue. Hormone treatments can minimize gynecomastia but may fail to get rid of it completely, especially for those with moderate to severe cases.

Why Weight Loss Isn’t Enough

Perhaps the best example of how non-surgical male breast reduction falls short is with weight loss. True gynecomastia is when breast tissue is overdeveloped, not when there is excess fat on the chest. Because gynecomastia is usually accompanied by some fat, it is true that weight loss may improve your appearance. However, weight loss cannot target chest fat directly, so the area may remain unaffected. Even more importantly, this treatment for gynecomastia does nothing to resolve the problem of excess breast tissue. Even major weight loss will never get rid of glandular tissue.

Male Breast Reduction Surgery

As non-surgical methods are insufficient, gynecomastia surgery has been developed to permanently and fully address this condition. This surgery is highly effective and tends to produce permanent results. Depending on your case, your surgical technique may be one of the following:

  • Liposuction (for excess fat removal)
  • Incisional Technique (for breast tissue and fat removal)
  • Extended Incisional Technique (for breast tissue, fat, and skin removal)

Gynecomastia surgery restores a flatter and more masculine chest. Men who undergo male breast reduction surgery may feel more confident in their appearance, have reduced anxiety and embarrassment, and develop a more positive self-image.

Dr. Benjamin Schlechter has over 20 years of experience as a board-certified plastic surgeon. To schedule your consultation with him, call (847) 737-5036 or complete our online contact form today.

How to Lose a Double Chin

Close up of woman with beautiful neckExercise doesn’t always work when you are trying to tone a specific area. So-called “spot reduction” through a healthy lifestyle is a myth, and no amount of dieting or exercises are guaranteed to successfully eliminate a double chin. The following four cosmetic procedures can help you achieve a slender and defined neckline once and for all with long-lasting results.

KYBELLA®

KYBELLA® is one of the newest injectables on the market. This prescription medicine is specially formulated for the treatment of submental fullness (a double chin). The active ingredient in this non-surgical treatment is deoxycholic acid, which aids in the breakdown and absorption of fat. After KYBELLA® is injected, patients return to their typical daily activities, and the deoxycholic acid begins to destroy the fat cells under the chin. As the weeks and months pass, the body will flush away the destroyed cells, leading to a noticeable reduction in submental fullness. Depending on the amount of fat distribution under their chin, patients may need between one and six treatment sessions with KYBELLA® to achieve their desired results.

Liposuction

Liposuction is a popular body contouring procedure that removes fat from targeted areas. If you have stubborn fat under your chin, liposuction can help. There are several different surgical techniques, but they all require small incisions, the insertion of a thin tube, and the extraction of fat through the tube via suction. There is typically a short period of recovery with some swelling and bruising, after which you can return to normal life. Many patients need only one treatment session with liposuction to remove their double chin.

PrecisionTx™

PrecisionTx™ is a laser contouring and skin tightening system for the neck and lower face. If you have mild to moderate skin laxity and desire better definition along the jawline and neck, PrecisionTx™ can help. This one-hour, minimally invasive treatment is performed under either local anesthesia or IV sedation. Dr. Schlechter makes small incisions under the chin and below each ear. He then inserts the PrecisionTx™ laser fiber through a tube just under the skin, where it delivers laser energy wavelengths. This laser energy disrupts the underlying tissue, causing collagen formation and tissue contraction. After a short recovery period, patients can return to work and will see the results gradually improve over the next three to six months. PrecisionTx™ is a one-time treatment that offers lasting results for tightening and toning the skin beneath the chin.

truSculpt®

truSculpt® is an optimized radio frequency fat reduction and skin tightening system that can target stubborn fat without invasive surgery. Safe for use on numerous areas of the body, including the neck and chin area, truSculpt® can improve skin tone and get rid of unwanted fat. Anesthesia is not required. The truSculpt® device is held to the target area, and pulses of radio-frequency energy are transmitted through the skin. This energy destroys the fat cells, and the body gets rid of them naturally. There is no downtime with truSculpt®. The results become noticeable within a few weeks and improve for a few months. Two or more treatments may be needed to achieve your desired results. This non-invasive procedure can help those who wish to get rid of stubborn fat on the neck or other areas but are not good candidates for surgical procedures.

Dr. Benjamin Schlechter, M.D., F.A.C.S. has over 20 years of experience as a board-certified plastic surgeon. Having performed tens of thousands of procedures as a plastic surgeon, Dr. Schlechter can help you determine which treatment is best for your needs and will help you eliminate your double chin for good. To request your appointment, please call (847) 737-5036 or complete our online contact form today.

Should I Get a Tummy Tuck?

The first “rule” of getting plastic surgery is that you should never do it to please someone else. Plastic surgery is for your benefit, to help you achieve the body and beauty ideals that you have in mind for yourself. Still, even if no one is pressuring you to do it, you may have trouble taking the leap. While only you can decide whether you should get a tummy tuck, here are some of the reasons you may want to undergo this procedure.

Before and After Photos for Tummy Tuck Surgery

Has Your Abdomen Become Significantly Less Toned Over Time?

Pregnancy, weight loss, and aging are the chief causes of aesthetic abdominal issues. Men and women alike may struggle with loose skin, weakened muscles, and subcutaneous abdominal fat. If your abdomen has developed these features over time, a tummy tuck could help you recapture your youthfully slender and toned waistline.

Do You Have Loose, Stretched Abdominal Skin?

Loose, stretched skin on the abdomen is common after pregnancy and even after moderate to major weight loss. The tummy tuck procedure can remove excess skin and pull the remaining skin taut so that the stomach is no longer bulging and ridged but feels firm and smooth. While liposuction can help patients who have excess abdominal fat, only a tummy tuck can correct loose, hanging skin.

Are Your Core Muscles Weak or Separated?

Weight gain and pregnancy can cause the stomach muscles to separate. For many patients, the muscles are unable to recover and remain loose and weak, causing the stomach to appear perpetually distended. Abdominoplasty with rectus plication tightens the core muscles so that the stomach wall is once again firm and flat, with natural contours. If you have struggled unsuccessfully to achieve a firm abdominal contour with dieting, crunches, and other exercises, a tummy tuck can tighten your abdominal muscles and flatten your waistline.

Do You Have Stubborn Fat On Your Abdomen?

Stubborn abdominal fat can affect individuals in many circumstances and is not by itself a reason to undergo tummy tuck surgery. Liposuction and other fat removal procedures can accomplish the desired results without manipulating the skin or muscles. However, if you have stubborn fat accompanied by loose skin and weak stomach muscles, a tummy tuck may be an excellent choice for you. This procedure can correct all three issues and produce a smoother, firmer, and flatter tummy.

The choice to undergo tummy tuck surgery is deeply personal. To discuss your situation with an expert plastic surgeon, come in for a personal consultation with our board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Benjamin Schlechter. He will offer recommendations based on years of experience for the best treatment for your aesthetic goals and anatomic needs. To request your appointment, please call (847) 737-5036 or complete our online contact form today.

Spider Vein Treatment With Laser Therapy

Spider veins are spiky and thin veins that may form on the face and legs. While generally harmless, these unsightly veins can tarnish your complexion. If your skin is marked by noticeable spider veins, laser vein treatment with the Cutera® excel V™ laser can eliminate your spider veins and produce a more even skin tone.

Before & After Photos of Laser Treatments for Spider Veins

What Causes Spider Veins?

Spider veins form when vein valves weaken, causing blood to back up instead of flowing naturally through the vein. The most common causes of spider veins are aging, weight gain, hormones, sun exposure, pregnancy, injuries, prolonged standing or sitting, and genetics. Though usually harmless, these veins may itch or burn. Most people consider them a nuisance and an embarrassment. Without treatment, spider veins are permanent. People who are not aware of the Cutera® excel V™ laser may feel forced to conceal their spider veins by wearing pants or applying makeup concealer.

How Can the Cutera® excel V™ Laser Help?

The Cutera® excel V™ laser is a simple treatment that can permanently eliminate spider veins and restore evenly toned skin. This laser can treat a wide range of veins from small spider veins to deep blue reticular veins with nice results.

Your treatment may begin with the application of a topical anesthetic if desired, after which the laser will be applied. The laser will deliver short pulses of light energy into the skin. This laser energy causes the blood vessels to constrict and collapse. Over the following weeks, the blood will reroute to new, healthy veins, and the destroyed vein will fade away. For small or minor spider veins, only one or two treatments may be needed to achieve the desired results. This quick and easy treatment with the Cutera® excel V™ laser can resolve spider veins with minimal or no downtime and permanent results.

Spider vein treatment with the Cutera® excel V™ laser can permanently eliminate spider veins and restore a balanced and even skin tone. To learn more about this treatment, request your personal consultation with Dr. Benjamin Schlechter, our board-certified plastic surgeon. Call (847) 737-5036 or complete our online contact form to schedule your appointment with us today.

How Much Breast Asymmetry Is Normal?

Breast asymmetry is far more common than most people realize. In fact, it is believed that virtually all women have some degree of breast asymmetry. For many women, this asymmetry is so slight that it is barely noticeable, or it may not be noticeable at all. Others are not so fortunate, and their pronounced breast asymmetry affects them physically and/or emotionally. If your breast asymmetry bothers you, breast surgery can help you achieve a more balanced and natural-looking bust line.

Before and After Photos of a Breast Augmentation with Breast Lift

When to Consider Surgery

Breast asymmetry is usually a difference in size or volume. If there is only a slight difference, this may be unnoticeable most or all of the time. However, some women’s breasts can differ in size by more than a cup and may be noticeable even to strangers. Additionally, some women’s breasts may differ in shape or may go through changes during pregnancy, nursing, and aging that lead to asymmetry. For example, aging breasts may sag at different rates, leading to one sagging noticeably lower than the other. In some cases, asymmetry can be attributed to breast augmentation. If a plastic surgeon does not account for natural asymmetry, it can become more pronounced after inserting breast implants. Surgical complications that may arise after breast augmentation can cause noticeable aesthetic changes to one breast only. No matter the cause, if the differences between your breasts are distressing to you, consider scheduling a consultation with a plastic surgeon to discuss your options for achieving a more even breast appearance.

Your Surgical Options

Breast asymmetry can be corrected through breast surgery. There are several surgical approaches that can help you achieve breast symmetry:

  • Breast Augmentation: Dr. Schlechter can insert an implant into the smaller breast or differently sized implants into both breasts to balance them out. This approach will increase the size of the breasts and can also improve their shape.
  • Breast Augmentation With Fat Transfer: Dr. Schlechter can extract excess fat from an area of the body and inject it into the smaller breast to boost its size. This approach can be successful for those with minor asymmetry (i.e., less than one cup size difference), but it is more difficult to rely on as a correction for breast asymmetry because the amount of fat that will successfully graft into the breast tissue is variable.
  • Breast Lift: Dr. Schlechter can perform a breast lift to reshape and reposition the breasts so that they appear youthful and balanced. This approach is best for women whose breasts are sagging, especially if their sagging is uneven.
  • Breast Reduction: Dr. Schlechter can surgically remove excess breast tissue to reduce the size of just the larger breast or both breasts. This approach is best for women whose overly large breasts cause them emotional or physical discomfort.
  • Breast Revision: Dr. Schlechter can perform breast revision to correct asymmetry caused by surgical complications from breast augmentation, such as implant deflation or capsular contracture. This approach improves the condition of the breasts and balances out their appearance.

Breast surgery can correct breast asymmetry and help women achieve a more natural, even, and aesthetically pleasing breast appearance. To learn more about your options, schedule your personal consultation with our experienced and board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Benjamin Schlechter. Please call (847) 737-5036 or contact us online to request your appointment today.

The Spa at North Shore Was Voted Best Med Spa!

North Shore Aesthetics 2017 Winner Choice AwardWe are proud to announce that the Spa at North Shore Aesthetics was recently voted the 2017 Winner of the North Shore Choice Awards for Best Med Spa!

As Medical Director of the Spa, Dr. Benjamin Schlechter is involved in the day-to-day operations of the Spa, including ongoing training of his staff on the newest treatments, products, and lasers available and offering the latest technologies and techniques for his patients. Having a knowledgeable board-certified plastic surgeon as the hands-on Medical Director and highly trained staff are only two of the reasons the Spa at North Shore Aesthetics is a med spa like no other!

Click on the article below to learn how the Spa at North Shore Aesthetics offers a Med Spa like no other.

The Spa at North Shore Aesthetics Offers a Med Spa Like No Other

To schedule your appointment at our award-winning Med Spa, call us at 847-737-5036 or fill out our online contact form today!

Thank You for Voting North Shore Aesthetics Best MedSap