7 Questions from RealSelf, Answered

Board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Usha Rajagopal performs dozens of different procedures every week. Patients come to her with questions about every stage of treatment: from preparation to recovery.  This week we’ve gathered some commonly asked question taken from RealSelf.com.

RealSelf.com is the definitive community for cosmetic surgery, plastic surgeon review, and procedure referrals on the web. Through RealSelf.com, Dr. Usha extends her expert knowledge to help everyday people better understand cosmetic surgery.

Today, Dr. Usha briefly answers 7 questions from the site, ranging from injectables to liposuction, to labiaplasty and more.

Question 1: Botox vs. Kybella in Jaw and Chin?

I had wanted to get Botox on my chin/ jaw area to make it appear more defined. I was wondering if this would remove any fat around that area. Would Kybella be a better option? I have very slight fat around (these areas), I just wanted it more defined. Thanks!

Dr. Usha: Both products work well for various indications in this area. Kybella is very effective in dramatically defining the jaw by removing bulk in the submental (double chin area) as well as jowl areas. Botox works well in narrowing the jawline in patients with square jaws. I have also found Botox very effective in redefining the jaw and neck area of older patients by treating the Platysmal bands of the neck in a procedure called "Nefertiti Lift."

Question 2: Labiaplasty Recovery: How Long Does It Take?

How long is the typical recovery period for Labiaplasty? What can I expect during the recovery period?

Dr. Usha:

  • You will generally need 3-4 days at home to recover.
  • Take Tylenol or the pain medication prescribed by your plastic surgeon to relieve your pain/discomfort. DO NOT take aspirin or ibuprofen because they can increase bruising and bleeding.
  • Shower the day after surgery.
  • Clean the incision site with hydrogen peroxide and put antibiotic cream/ointment on daily.
  • Your stitches should dissolve within 2-2 ½ weeks.
  • Swelling and tenderness should disappear within 6 weeks.
  • It will take between 6 months to a year before you will see the absolute final results.

Question 3: Should I Try to Lose Weight Before Liposuction?

I have scheduled my liposuction in about a month. I weigh approximately 142 lbs now, and am 5'4''. Should I maintain my current weight or try to lose a few pounds between now and then? I have been trying to lose weight and I'm not sure how much weight is even possible for me to lose in a month. Thanks!

Dr. Usha: If you plan to lose a significant amount of weight (30lbs or more) then it is a good idea to do this prior to surgery. If it is more like 5-10lbs, it will not make much of a difference to do this prior to or after liposuction.

Question 4: Can the O-Shot help with Urinary Incontinence?

Dr. Usha: The O-Shot procedure can treat both stress and urge urinary incontinence for 90% of women, while increasing lubrication in the vagina. Many women experience uncomfortable vaginal dryness and urinary incontinence caused by aging, pregnancy, menopause and other medical conditions.

Urinary incontinence can affect women of all ages, but the issue is most prevalent among older women. Another benefit of these injections are more youthful and smoother looking vaginal lips. Femilift is another non-surgical procedure that helps with urinary incontinence.

Question 5: How long will PRP for Hair Loss take to see the results?

Dr. Usha: You will start to notice results in about 4 to 8 months after your PRP hair regrowth procedure. This follows the normal hair growth cycle. With six to twelve months most patients will see remarkable improvement in volume and quality of their hair growth

Hair continues to thicken the next 12 to 15 months. And results can last for months or at time even years.

Question 6: Do You Lose 50 CC's with Behind the Muscle Silicone Implant Placement?

I am getting silicone breast implants on Friday and am really scared of going too big. I am currently a "B"; I want to be a "C". I have chosen 350cc in hopes they will look like the 300-325 implant I tried at my doctor's office.

Dr. Usha: Placing any breast implant below the muscle will cause the implant to loose a small amount of projection. Though the exact amount isn't quantifiable, your estimation is reasonable.

To choose a breast implant, place the implant in your bra. When the implant feels a little too big, you've probably found the right size.

Question 7: Is It Normal to Be Swollen and Hard After 2.5 Months Post Liposuction on Abdomen?

I had liposuction on abdomen 2.5 months ago. The swelling has gone down a little and it is not too tender now. I still have problems with numbness sensation in my abdomen. My abdomen also feels a little hard. Is this normal? When will most of the swelling go away? ...Is there something wrong?

Dr. Usha: It is completely normal to experience numbness and firmness in the area of the body where liposuction was performed.  When undergoing some sort of trauma to the tissue, the body naturally develops scar tissue which can feel firm and numb to the touch.  

Over time (generally 4-6 months), these areas will soften and sensation will return.  Massaging the scar tissue is one way to speed up the healing process.  I have my patients start doing daily massages about 1-2 weeks post op.  If self-massaging isn't enough, ultrasound massage treatments may be an option.

If you have additional questions about any of the procedures covered in this post, contact our office to schedule an appointment. Dr. Usha is a skilled specialist in vaginal rejuvenation procedures and has served the Bay Area for over 20 years. Book your free consultation and evaluation with her today.


Dr. Rajagopal is a RealSelf Top Doctor

The RealSelf Top Doctor (TOP) is a recognition awarded to less than 10% of doctors on RealSelf. This status is earned by achieving high patient satisfaction (as reported in RealSelf reviews), getting favorable feedback on their expert answers, and after investing significant time in Q&A and other doctor activity.