Our practice has recently started using Exparel for pain relief. Exparel provides up to three days of continuous pain relief following a single dose administered during surgery. Exparel is an innovative product that combines bupivacaine ( a local anesthetic that has been used for 20 years) with Depofoam, a proven product delivery technology that administers medication over a desired time period. What makes this new drug particularly advantageous for pain treatment of post-surgical procedures is that conventional anesthestic injections traditionally last only a few hours, thereofore increasing the need for additional narcotic use to manage main. When the reduction of narcotic use occurs, the potential side effects of narcotic use also diminish, which can include sleepiness, nausea, constipation and abnormal mood behavior. In our practice, we’re utilizing this innovative drug to treat breast augmentation, breast augmentation with a mastopexy (lift) and tummy tuck patients. Please call our office to find out more about this innovative new pain relief option.
Archive for June, 2012
In order to help you get ready for the big day, we’ve put together this timeline of things you can do to prepare for surgery. From big-picture decisions to last-minute details, following the steps on this to-do list can help you feel confident that you are making the best decision for your body.
2-3 Months in Advance: Choose Your Surgeon
Set up initial consultations with several plastic surgeons to get a feel for their work. During these visits, discuss your expectations and ask to see lots of before and after photos. Make sure the physicians are certified by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons or the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (preferably both) and that the surgical facilities are accredited. Look for surgeons who have hospital privileges as well.
After these visits, you should be prepared to make a final decision about which surgeon you want to perform your breast augmentation.
1-2 Months in Advance: Get to Know Your Body
After you’ve selected a surgeon, begin working with him or her to determine what you want from your breast augmentation. There are a number of important decisions to make that will affect your final appearance:
- What kind of implants? You can choose either saline or silicone implants. Many women prefer silicone, but there is no one best option for everyone.
- What size? Implants are not measured in cup size, but rather cubic centimeters. You should talk to your doctor about how big you want to go, and he or she can make suggestions about what will work best for your frame and body.
- Under or over the muscle? There are two different options for breast augmentation—the implants can be placed under the pectoral muscle, or “over” it in the breast. There are pros and cons to both options. Your surgeon can help you decide which will work best for you.
In addition, if you smoke, now is a good time to quit or at least drastically cut back. Smoking can interfere with the healing process. Talk to your doctor about smoking and your surgery for more advice.
1 Week in Advance: Pre-op and Other Arrangements
About a week before your surgery, your surgeon will bring you in for a final pre-operation evaluation. At this time, you will have blood work done and sign informed consent forms. Let your doctor know about any changes in your medications or vitamins or if you come down with an illness. Your physician will also give you a final checklist of what you need for the surgery.
At home, you should also begin making preparations. Most patient’s need at least two weeks to start to feel normal again, so make sure that you can take some time off from your normal responsibilities. Take care of last minute “chores” like filling prescriptions, paying bills, charging your phone battery, etc. Make arrangements for someone to drive you to and from the appointment and for someone to stay with you all through that first day and night.
1 Day in Advance: Final Countdown
Your doctor will give you a specific rundown of what you should do and not do, but here are some tips:
- Don’t take aspirin or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications as these can increase your risk of bleeding.
- Don’t exercise the day before surgery.
- Clean your skin thoroughly the night before and the day of the surgery with anti-bacterial soap.
- Get a good night’s sleep.
- Don’t eat or drink anything the night before the surgery, including water. Ask your surgeon about any prescriptions you are taking.
- Wear comfy clothes.
- Don’t put on any makeup, jewelry, perfume, nail polish, etc.
- Arrange needed items so that they do not require any bending over to get them.
- Follow your surgeon’s instructions about when you can return to normal activities.
The most important advice we can give you to help you prepare for surgery is to listen to your surgeon and become an active participant in this process. Ask questions and consult carefully with your doctor about any important decisions that have to be made.
If you want to get started with your own breast augmentation procedure at our San Diego plastic surgery office, contact us for an appointment.
Written by Peter Samberg.