Breast Sagging After Massive Weight Loss? There's a Laser For That
Varci Vartanian on 7 Aug 2013 at 9:00am
Dr. David Stoker fills us in on how to lift and shape with laser breast surgery.
After getting the message in a fortune cookie, Chantell Johnson, 25, finds out she's going on a year-long journey with trainer Chris Powell on last week's episode of ABC's Extreme Weight Loss. While Chantell is a young woman, she's already at risk for diabetes, heart disease and a stroke — with a starting weight of 327 pounds. So, after a year of dedicated diet and exercise (including a marathon through the rainy streets of Paris and graduating from college) -- Chantell steps on the scale at her final reveal looking incredible at 159 pounds.
Dr. David Stoker, an LA plastic surgeon, also plays a pivotal role in her transformation -- performing a total body lift to remove excess hanging skin common after massive weight loss. In addition, Chantell undergoes laser breast surgery, an intriguing procedure that purports to lift, shape and add cleavage. Which got us wondering... how does a laser fit in with a breast lift?
RealSelf: We're used to hearing about lasers used for tattoo removal or skin rejuvenation -- but not for the breasts. What happens in laser breast surgery?
Dr. Stoker: I create an internal bra in the breast – using the extra skin that would normally be cut [away and discarded with] a breast lift or a breast reduction. The laser removes the outer epidermis on [this] excess breast skin, so that it leaves behind the deep dermis and underlying breast tissue. [Then], I create a pocket for the laser-treated skin and I sew it into position – so it gives fullness in the cleavage area [and lift] where patients really want it. It [can] have the effect of a small breast implant.
RealSelf: Which patients want laser breast surgery instead a breast lift with implants?
Dr. Stoker: Breast implants are great if the patient wants to be a larger breast size than they are. But for many of my patients – they are comfortable with their overall volume, it’s just that their breasts have dropped lower and wider than they used to be. And if I use my internal laser bra approach – they can [achieve] a better-looking result. Most female patients after massive weight loss would be candidates for this... also moms after breast feeding.
RealSelf: What are the benefits of the laser bra approach?
Dr. Stoker: I've been using laser breast surgery to create an internal bra for about 12 years. I've done many hundreds of them and published articles on our techniques and experience.
[The procedure uses] uses living breast tissue that feels totally natural and is not associated with any of the issues that breast implants may be associated with...like rupture or rippling. It probably lasts longer than traditional breast lift techniques because it is better supported [surgically] on the inside and the outside.