Dr Decorato is awesome, I had smartlipo on my inner thighs and lower belly in Sept 2011 and I love the results. I’m 32, 140 lbs and 5 foot 8, healthy and exercise but couldn’t lose fat in these parts. I came to Dr D’s office for the first time in Aug 2011. I did all my research for months before deciding on my surgeon and am happy with my choice. I went on consults with Dr Steinbrech, Dr Pakeman, Dr Chia and Dr Decorato. It was clear to me that Dr Decorato was the most skilled as well as the friendliest. Word of advice- do your research to make sure you are in safe hands (e.g. I found out that one dr had previously killed a patient so did not feel right going ahead with that office.) I liked that Dr D didn’t pressure me to go ahead with the surgery, simply presented me with his advice on what he could do for me if I chose to proceed. I appreciated that he didn’t make me feel like I needed to fix 10 different things that were so incredibly “wrong” with me, but instead just asked me why I was there and focused on how he could improve what I told him I didn’t like about my appearance, without adding to it.
I want to stress this point because Dr Decorato was my 2nd consult, and my 1st consult had gone badly as that other surgeon wrongly suggesting that I require far more work done that what I had asked for, and on areas that I had never even thought of as problems to begin with, which left me feeling confused and insecure. At my first consult this other Dr said SmartLipo would be a waste of time for me, because the skin would be too saggy on my inner thighs, and so the only way forward was a thigh lift (which is about 2x the price). When I researched thigh lifts, I discovered that not only is it more expensive, it also causes huge scars around the pubic area which would have left me even more insecure.
When I went on my 2nd consult with Dr D, I asked his view on thigh lifts. He said if anyone tells me I need one, I should run from that office, because a single girl in her 30’s who is not obese should definitely not endure bad scars around her pubic area for nothing, making it impossible not to tell every future partner that you’ve had plastic surgery. Instead he said smartlipo is the best way forward as it is discreet and as I’m young and healthy the skin would tighten just fine (and it did). I also like that Dr D doesn’t close the wounds, while other doctors do, because he explained something to me like “it’s messier on the patient but better to get the tumulscent liquid out of your system asap, so it’s healthier for you to endure the leak.” Being a research queen, I found this view corroborated by other top doctors online, so I believe this to be the better technique. I told Dr D what my previous consult had advised me differently and that he was my 2nd opinion and that I was confused based on the opposite opinions of the 2 doctors I had seen so far. Dr D told me not to rush with my decision and that I should see further doctors until I feel sure and am able to trust my doctor. Again I really appreciated this, it was the opposite of the hard sell I experienced at my first consult. So I left and went on a few more consults, only to realize Dr D was in fact the best as I felt most comfortable with him. He is down to earth, easy to talk to, and in it for the patient’s happiness rather than the money, which is incredibly rare to find. If you’re wondering how I found him in the first place, it was via a recommendation of a friend who works in the plastic surgery industry, so that also gave me the assurance that I was making a smart decision.
One last point on research- Dr D actually taught me that there is a vast difference in types of accreditations held by surgeons, so do your homework and make sure yours is accredited by the most reputable source, as Dr D is.
I had my surgery in Sept 2011. It really didn’t hurt as I took a pill which made me pretty loopy before I went into the operating room, so didn’t feel a thing. The doc spoke to me throughout, as I only had local aneasthetic, which I recommend. I think the big thing for me was to feel trust, and once I believed in my surgeon, I was at ease so the surgery was not traumatic. I felt scared when I was sat up at the end and shoved into a garment, as I was leaking everywhere and could see the punctures on my skin, but the doctor assured me I’d be ok and he and the nurses helped walk me out to my car with my meds. One word of advice, bring a blanket! When you stand up and you’re feeling dizzy/disorientated you will notice you’re also incredibly freezing cold. So bring warm clothes (black jogging bottoms and a buttoned shirt are best) and a blanket to throw over your shoulders.
My parents drove me home and my mom stayed with me for the first 2 nights. You definitely need someone with you at least for the 1st night, it is pretty scary when you continue leaking and feel weak, so will need someone to help you use the bathroom while still wearing the garment, take your meds at the right time etc. I also took herbal meds to heal quicker (arnica, bromolene, vitamin c, vit k, and some sort of good bacteria thing that the salesgirl at GNC convinced me to buy). Make sure you buy loads of pads (kind of like indoor pet pads if you have a dog) to line under you as you sleep, as you will leak for the first day a lot, it’s pretty gross. My mom had to change those pads every time I went to the bathroom, and it was uncomfortable feeling myself leaking over my bed. My parents also placed my yoga mat on top of my mattress and then my sheet on top, followed by old towels, followed by the disposable pads, as they realized this was the best method of dealing with the leaking.
I don’t remember much of the first 2 days as I was pretty zonked on meds, but I can tell you I could walk, talk, eat etc. Spent most of my time in bed though. On day 2 I started walking around the apt a bit. Leaking stopped thank god. Dr called me at home that evening which was nice, so I could ask q’s. On day 3 I walked outside for like 5 mins, and then gradually increased it daily. If you walk too much your legs swell and you feel really heavy/tired like you must sit down immediately, and everything throbs. So listen to your body.
I was lucky in that I took 2 wks off work to recover, which I recommend. Do not go back to work at least for 1 wk. The first wk you will sleep loads and do little. The 2nd wk I was able to get back to my old routine, minus exercise (my doc said no exercise for 4 wks). The garment becomes your friend, even though you hate it for the first wk, it becomes comforting over time. Keep wearing it, I wore mine for 4-6wks. Oh and don’t panic when you see how large your body is after lipo – you are super swollen and it will take time to go down, this is normal. Also the bruising looks hideous but this too will get better. For my the bruising took about a month to go (I used arnica gel which helped).
I am happy with my results. I was realistic. The Dr told me I would not have thighs like a skinny Victoria Secret model or something, as my body shape is not like that. I’ve still got curves, but the shape is so much smoother and better/natural looking. I still have big thighs but no longer have huge disgusting thighs. Although my thighs still touch at the top, but much less than they used to. I am still a bit swollen at 3 months, apparently it takes 6 months to see final results. But I visibly look so much better already and I am ok with not having perfect thighs as my Dr told me all these things before I had surgery, and so there were no surprises, which I like. I have better looking thighs and a flatter belly now and can wear clothes I could never pull off before surgery.
I have nothing but good things to say about Dr D and his staff. It has been very inconvenient for me to get to Staten Island, as I live in Manhatan, but it was worth it to be in safe hands. Also Barbara the patient coordinator is very professional and Laura the nurse is amazingly warm and sweet. Laura did a few VelaShape treatments on me free of charge post surgery which feels so good and helps my shape too. I would recommend Dr D to everyone and will be back in the future if I need anything done. If you decide to go see Dr D the consult is free so other than the journey to Staten Island, there's really nothing to lose. I recommend you do consults with more than one Dr to make sure you find what is best for you. I'll post pics soon.