Ask the Experts

This section is designed to provide answers to your most pressing questions about plastic surgery. For frequently asked questions about Sunset Cosmetic Surgery and the practice, please visit the FAQ page.

As a plastic surgeon Beverly Hills and Los Angeles patients visit regularly, each of our surgeons has certain questions that get asked a lot. We’ve posted some of them below. Do you have a question you’d like to see posted here? We encourage you to email us your questions by visiting our Contact page.


Question: What are the best ways to achieve fuller, but still natural-looking, lips?
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plastic surgeon beverly hills 1. Injections for temporary enhancementJuvederm is the most popular temporary solution. These can be done in the office of a Los Angeles or Beverly Hills plastic surgeon and take about 15-20 minutes. Those who wish to use local numbing cream (topical) should plan an extra15-20 minutes so it has time to work. Juvederm XC has virtually eliminated the need for nerve blocks since it contains lidocaine to instantly numb as it is injected, which makes for a much more comfortable experience.

2. Surgical enhancement

The most permanent way to augment the lips involve more advanced surgical procedures such as:

V-Y lip advancement to increase fullness of lips

Upper lip lift can be used to shorten the upper lip and improve upper incisor.

These types of surgical procedures can often be done on an outpatient basis with local anesthesia, however, some cases may require general anesthesia and an operating room.

For more information on lip augmentation, please read Dr. Svehlak’s article “The Perfect Lips: In Search of Size and Shape”, from the Sept 2003 issue of Plastic Surgery Products Magazine.


Question: Do I need to lose weight before seeking liposuction, a tummy tuck or body lift surgery? Or, will those procedures help me lose the weight and motivate me?
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beverly hills plastic surgeon Liposuction is a body sculpting tool, not a weight loss solution. Ideal candidates are typically within around 10 pounds of their normal/ideal weight for their body type and frame. Liposuction targets areas of the body resistant to diet and exercise. For example, a woman whose thighs have always been out of proportion with the rest of her body. She could be in great shape, exercise, and follow a healthy diet, but due to hereditary factors, her thighs always look out of proportion to her. Liposuction performed by an experienced Los Angeles or Beverly Hills plastic surgeon can correct this and balance our her figure. Similarly, we see a lot of male patients who can’t get rid of their flanks, also known as ‘love handles’.Tummy tucks and body lifts include the removal of fat, but excess skin is also removed. During these procedures, liposuction is also used to remove excess fat, and then loose skin which has lost its elasticity is also removed to beautifully contour the body and tighten the skin.

The bottom line is this: Potential patients who are 15-20% overweight or more should focus on reducing and stabilizing their weight first, either through a weight-loss program or, in more extreme cases, being seen by a bariatric doctor first for gastric bypass or lap band procedure.


Question: Is fat grafting permanent or not?
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In my experience as a plastic surgeon Beverly Hills and Los Angeles patients trust, 90% of people get a lasting result in the cheek and under-eye areas with fat grafting. It is expected that a portion of the fat that is injected will re-absorb in the months following surgery (typically 40-50%). The rest should remain permanent, and most people do get a lasting result.A few, I’d estimate maybe 10-20% of patients, may need a little more fat injected 6-9 months after their initial surgery. This “touch up” of sorts does cost some if needed, but typically it’s much less than the initial surgery and can sometimes be done on an outpatient basis.

I have found that people who smoke do not get a lasting result.


Question: How can I tell if I have enough fat for a Brazilian Butt Lift?
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Many patients will call and give us their height and weight, however, those stats are not easy to decipher since muscle weight is also a factor. I am easily able to tell during a consultation if there is enough fat to extract in other areas of the body for a Brazilian butt lift. Common areas to extract fat from include the waist, abdomen, hips, thighs or arms. Extremely skinny patients usually do not have enough fat to get enough donor far for the procedure.Keep in mind that a Brazilian butt lift requires liposuction so that I have fat to work with on the buttocks.