Change Your Life, Contact Dr. Hurwitz 412-802-6100

Dennis J. Hurwitz, M.D., F.A.C.S.
Siamak Agha-Mohammadi, M.D.

Pittsburgh, PA Location
3109 Forbes Ave., Suite 500
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15213
Phone: 412-802-6100
Fax: 412-802-7700

Hurwitz Center- Beverly Hills
Associate: Jay Calvert, M.D.
465 Roxbury Dr. North
Suite 1001 Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Phone: 412-802-6100

Irvine, CA Location
2302 Martin St. Suite 100
Irvine, CA 92663
Phone: 412-802-6100
Fax: 412-802-7700

To learn more about liposculpture, Total Body Lift™, or other liposuction surgery combinations, contact the Hurwitz Center for Plastic Surgery.

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Total Body Lift and Liposuction (Liposculpture) Surgery Information from Dr. Dennis Hurwitz

Ever since he began his plastic surgery career, Dr. Dennis Hurwitz has strived to remain at the forefront of technology and technique. Through years of research, experience, and study he has become the innovator of the total body lift, a technique that implements procedures such as liposculpture (liposuction surgery). Patients flock to his Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania practice because they appreciate the customized approach taken with each individual.

Not everyone is strictly looking for breast enhancement or simple liposuction surgery. Women who are seeking overall rejuvenation after one or more pregnancies or people who have excessive skin after achieving massive weight loss need specialized treatment. Because every individual is different, a cookie-cutter approach simply won't work. Dr. Hurwitz and Dr. Agha can work with each patient to devise a combination of procedures that, performed at one time, will improve the body's silhouette, remove excess skin, and allow the patient to pursue everyday activities that most people take for granted.

No matter what your medical and aesthetic goals, Dr. Hurwitz and Dr. Agha will develop an innovative solution that will help you achieve your vision. The following is a Q&A session with Dr. Hurwitz that is intended to answer your questions about total body lift and liposuction surgery, both available at the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania office of Hurwitz Center for Plastic Surgery.

What led you to develop the Total Body Lift™ procedure?

While correcting the deficiencies of prior piecemeal surgery on a patient in February 2001, I conceived the Upper Body Lift procedure. After analyzing the remarkable improvement in the upper torso, breasts and arms, I realized that a well-planned coordinated approach to the total problem of skin redundancy was the optimal way to go.

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Who are the perfect candidates for a Total Body Lift™?

The perfect candidate for a single-stage Total Body Lift™ at my Pittsburgh practice is 30 years old, has no medical problems, exercises regularly, and is aerobically fit and highly motivated. This candidate will accept higher risk, more pain and longer convalescence for the convenience and possibly improved results entailed in a single long operation. They recognize that relatively minor revision surgery is common. This may include additional liposuction surgery or other small procedures.

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How many Total Body Lifts™ have you now performed?

Over the last four years, I have performed nearly a hundred Total Body Lifts™ by working with a team of plastic surgeons, physician assistants, and technicians at Magee-Women’s Hospital of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. The majority of them have been on women who’ve lost more than a hundred pounds after having gastric bypass surgery, yet were still deeply unhappy with their appearance. They were left with large amounts of excess skin hanging off them, making them unable to fit into their clothes and embarrassed to be seen naked even in front of their husbands. Surgery after massive weight loss, offered by the Hurwitz Center for Plastic Surgery, restored these ladies' trim silhouettes and self-confidence.

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How have your techniques evolved?

With the knowledge we’ve gained and beautiful results we’ve achieved from performing this many Total Body Lifts™, we’ve now been extending the principles of these procedures to far less extensive problems. For example, an aging woman who has had multiple pregnancies requires more than just liposculpture or a tummy tuck. She wishes to have her breasts re-shaped, the hanging skin of her arms and thighs reduced, and perhaps a better fill of her buttocks – all at the same time. I can now safely help this woman by working with a team of doctors – with the least amount of scarring possible.

We’re constantly modifying liposculpture and body lift procedures. If a patient's back roll is moderate, I hide the upper back scar under the arm instead of going across the back under the bra line. We’ve also improved my innovative technique for using a patient’s own excess chest skin and fat to build up her breasts so that they can be more fully developed and natural. In addition, we’re being more aggressive with liposculpture. Available at our Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania office, VASER® LipoSelection® ultrasonic liposuction is used to better remove excess fat during the course of body contouring. This means melting away back rolls and giving many women a much narrower waist than was ever previously possible.

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Can you elaborate on how you use “spiral flaps” and a patient's own fat injections to create beautifully contoured breasts?

Breasts can be shaped and enlarged with the use of excess skin and fat of the upper abdomen and around the mid-chest. I do this by creating two “flaps” of skin, with one end of each remaining connected to the central breast mound. I then turn, twist and rotate these flaps into position; hence the term “spiral flap.” It’s a time-intensive technique, requiring considerable skill to maintain the blood supply from the patient, but it is far and away the best means to augment the breasts with beautiful contours.

Alternatively, direct fat injection is a means of enlargement. So-called lipoaugmentation is a time consuming process of fat extraction via liposuction surgery and re-insertion into the breast mound. The amount of fat that remains in the target area is unpredictable and repeated fat injection sessions are expected. Nevertheless, I use liposuction and lipoaugmentation to improve minor contour problem after spiral flap reshaping of the breasts.

These techniques are popular because most patients prefer to avoid silicone implants. Inelastic breast skin, often a result of massive weight loss, conforms poorly to implants and sags too much.

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What disqualifies someone from receiving this kind of comprehensive body contouring work?

Being overweight, physically unfit, a smoker, or suffering from chronic medical or psychiatric problems will disqualify someone from having multiple liposculpture procedures or a single-stage Total Body Lift™ operation. After optimum care of these problems, the patient may qualify for a multiple-stage (i.e., upper body lift & lower body lift) approach.

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What kind of results can your patients expect? What is the average recovery time?

Establishing appropriate expectations and meeting or exceeding them is critical to a satisfying result in liposuction and other plastic surgery. In general, normal weight patients can expect removal of most excess skin and the creation of gender-specific, sensual contours and level, symmetrical scars that can typically be hidden beneath underwear.

Unfortunately scar quality is not predictable and varies according to the surgeon’s skill and patient’s innate healing ability. Six weeks is the average time for full recovery from a single stage Total Body Lift™ performed at my Pittsburgh office. Less recovery time is needed for patients who require more subtle work.

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What are your patients’ general reactions after a few months go by? Do they generally notice changes in their lives? If so, what?

The first few weeks after a Total Body Lift™ or extensive liposculpture are very stressful and even minor set backs are depressing to some patients, requiring caring and experienced emotional and medical support by myself and the staff. Within a month or so of a body lift, as the swelling and pain subside, patients truly appreciate the amazing transformation of their body, arms and thighs. With that acceptance, most express happiness, satisfaction and appreciation. These men and women radiate newfound self-confidence and gain the energy to re-craft their lives for the better.

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What are some of the side effects or possible complications involved with body contouring surgery?

Depending on the magnitude of the body lift operation, there may be enough blood loss to require transfusion. The necessary tight skin closure of body contouring surgery may lead to some separations, called dehiscence. This may require re-suturing at the bedside or even in the operating room, though so far this has not been necessary for any of my patients.

The prolonged operation may also lead to infections, usually detected a week or so later. Fortunately no patient has had prolonged serious infections. Blood clots, either in the lower extremity veins or those that block circulation, are very rare but possible. While other surgical experience indicates longer operations increase the risk of blood clots, we have not experienced that problem. Minor cosmetic shortcomings are common and are often corrected by relatively minor revision surgery such as liposculpture.

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With so many areas of the body being operated on at once, is scarring a big issue afterwards?

By operating on the arms, thighs and body at one time, I can place the scars better than in piecemeal surgeries. Along the torso we endeavor to keep the scars hidden beneath underwear and along the bra line, or in the nipple-areola area in males. Usually thigh scars are positioned along the groin, but when it’s necessary to extend scars down the thighs, we do so by carefully placing them in the most inconspicuous location between the legs. The same goes for my original L-brachioplasty arm reduction technique that reduces the sagging upper arms and recontours the armpits.

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Individual plastic surgery operations cost thousands of dollars. How much can someone expect to pay for comprehensive body contouring work?

The surgeon's fee for this work is the sum of the component operations. Larger portions such as the abdominoplasty and the upper body lift are around $8,000 each. The smaller portions such as brachioplasty and medial thighplasty range from $6000 to $8000. For the most complex work – a single stage Total Body Lift™ - the surgeon's and anesthesiologist’s fees, as well as a day in the operating room and four days of tertiary care can cost over $50,000.

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What is the advantage of multi-procedure body contouring work as opposed to having individual body parts serviced over a prolonged period of time?

The single-stage Total Body Lift™ obviously avoids multiple, major liposuction and skin removal operations – each requiring a long convalescence. That’s very appealing to people with busy lifestyles and to those coming to Pittsburgh from a great distance. While some of my patients were very pleased with what was planned as first stage lower-body and thigh lifts, they decline to repeat the experience for the upper body. The aesthetic advantages of comprehensive body contouring work is that patients obtain a narrower waist, and men have improved upper body contour and correction of gynecomastia when this area is operated on at the same time as the lower body.

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Have you ever had to dissuade a patient from having a procedure when you felt it was not necessary?

Yes. Some patients have to be cautioned against major body contouring surgery because of medical illnesses, age, or obesity. Sometimes, patients back off themselves, because they are unwilling to accept the theoretical increased risk of more extensive surgery.

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How can people learn more about the pioneering body contouring work you are doing?

My highly acclaimed new book, Total Body Lift™ Surgery, was published in 2005 to fully inform patients of this new area of plastic surgery. It contains 32 pages of before-and-after patient photographs and diagrams of some of the body lift procedures. Readers can also visit to learn more about all of the surgical techniques that I offer at the Hurwitz Center for Plastic Surgery.

Dr. Hurwitz has helped patients from all over the United States completely transform their appearances through Total Body Lift™ and liposuction (liposculpture) surgery. To find out if you are a candidate, contact the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Hurwitz Center for Plastic Surgery. You will be scheduled for a consultation with renowned plastic surgeon, Dr. Dennis Hurwitz. Together, you and he will be able to design a personalized treatment plan to help you look and feel your best.

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