Body Contouring Myths Debunked

Body Contouring, John W. Decorato, M.D., Staten Island, NYWhen it comes to losing a significant amount of weight — whether through diet and exercise or bariatric surgery — success is measured by more than just a number on a scale. If you have taken the time, effort, and expense to lose 100 pounds or more, you also expect to see a smaller, toned body when you look in the mirror.

Unfortunately, no amount of exercise or dieting will successfully remove excess skin that remains after achieving such a monumental weight loss goal. The results you desire will only happen through body contouring procedures such as tummy tucks, arm lifts, thigh lifts, and lower body lifts.

However, as with any type of cosmetic surgery, your ultimate satisfaction from these types of procedures will be based upon whatever expectations you entertained prior to your procedures, and these expectations should rely on sound facts, not misinformation.

There are numerous myths surrounding body contouring.

In order to assist you in setting realistic expectations that are fact-based, here are the most common body contouring myths debunked:

Body contouring will make me lose weight.

Body contouring will not help you lose weight. These procedures are best suited for someone who has already lost most of the weight they desire or expect to lose more with the help of bariatric surgery, or diet and exercise. Although it can be frustrating to notice areas of excess skin and tissue, it is critical to reach a certain weight prior to choosing body contouring to achieve ideal results.

Body contouring removes cellulite.

Unfortunately, body contouring does not remove cellulite. The fact is that cellulite, obesity, stretch marks, a history of sudden weight change, or sagging, loose, inelastic skin, can actually cause worse outcomes in many cases, depending on the type of procedure chosen.

For example, liposuction is not advised, but other procedures such as a body or leg lift can, at a minimum, enhance the appearance of cellulite-affected areas. Cellulaze, a laser treatment specifically designed to treat the multiple factors that cause cellulite, remains the best treatment for cellulite. Since these fatty deposits tend to be more superficial, the most effective masking job in performed by muscle.

Body contouring means a long stay in the hospital.

This is not true. In fact, the typical body contouring procedure is done on an outpatient basis. How long you are away from home largely depends upon if you have multiple procedures performed simultaneously.
Express your concerns to Dr. Decorato if time away from home will be a factor in your decision-making. Normally, these procedures do not last more than a few hours, and recovery is done mostly at home.

Body contouring is very risky and painful.

Although any surgical procedure entails a certain amount of risk, Dr. Decorato is very experienced in performing body contouring procedures using the latest technologies. You should discuss any concerns about risk and pain potential with him prior to your procedures.

Body contouring results don’t last.

This is not true, but the period of time your results will last will largely depend on you and not any procedures you have had performed.

You still must follow a diet and exercise program and maintain your health overall. If you do this, you can expect your results to last many years.

Of course, the aging process will continue. You may experience changes in the elasticity or laxity of your skin as you age, just like someone who had never had the surgery would experience.

Body contouring is expensive.

Since body contouring is an umbrella term that comprises a set of procedures, your cost can vary, depending upon which procedures you elect to have performed.

Because insurance companies normally treat procedures such as body contouring as an elective, you will probably have to pay the entire cost yourself. Do not rule out surgery before you have first consulted with Dr. Decorato to determine what the actual costs may be, and what financing options can be chosen.

Dr. Decorato accepts major credit cards such as Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover Card. Financing options are also available via CareCredit® and

CareCredit® offers fast approval and reasonable payment terms for individuals who are approved. If you need assistance to apply for the CareCredit program, we will be glad to help you when you visit our office.

Please keep in mind that you should make your decision regarding body contouring based upon actual facts that are best received from a board-certified plastic surgeon such as Dr. Decorato.

Body contouring procedures enjoy an extremely high satisfaction rate for those who go into the process with realistic expectations. Since they do a tremendous job of enhancing the appearance of people who have excess skin following large weight loss, they significantly increase the chances that weight loss can be maintained over time.

Written by John W. Decorato, MD August 26, 2015

Cellulaze™ For The Summer

Cellulaze Cellulite Treatment, John W. Decorato, M.D., Staten Island, NYSummer is here, and almost every single woman has felt the dread of this season when putting on her swimsuit and shorts. The temperatures are rising, which means that it’s time to bare it all, or at least the legs. However, hiding those dimply thighs can be nearly impossible.

So what are the options? Is it time to buy cellulite cream? That doesn’t work. What about going on a juice fast or cleanse? Or how about offering a sacrifice to the skinny goddess? What about wearing long skirts and pants and pretending that it is not summer?

Instead of trying to hide it, maybe it is time for you to deal with your cellulite problems.

Cellulaze™ can offer real solutions for you. It’s not just a helper. It can eliminate cellulite permanently.

When procedures were done in the past to eliminate cellulite, many worked on the surface of the skin, and some required multiple treatments. Cellulaze™ is a revolutionary procedure that is changing cellulite therapies.

Cellulaze™ is the only surgical procedure to help eliminate the cellulite in just one visit. Also, unlike methods used in the past, the effects are long lasting. Cellulaze™ is fairly new. There have only been about six years of clinical data, but patients who have undergone this procedure are continuing to report cellulite-free skin.

How Does It Work?

To begin, the treated area will receive an injection of lidocaine to numb the skin. The Cellulaze™ treatment uses a laser that melts away fatty lumps, or the fatty pockets that are trapped under the skin. Next, the laser will cut the bands that are trapping the fat. These bands are what pulls the skin down and create valleys or pits on the surface of the skin.

A tremendous amount of energy and heat is delivered from the laser. This is absorbed by the skin tissue and ignites the healing process. The body will begin to produce collagen and elastin. This will tighten and rethicken the skin. Patients are awake for the entire procedure and experience no pain.

What Then?

Patients will experience some mild drainage during the first 24 hours after the procedure because the fat was liquefied, and some light hand expression was used. Cellulaze™ is not like liposuction; where the fluid is suctioned out. This means that there will be some fluid drainage. It is necessary for a patient to wear a compression garment for the first couple of weeks. Also, some individuals have experienced bruising. Most people, however, say that this is a small price to pay for the amazing results.

After a patient has undergone Cellulaze™, they will be able to attend to normal activities after just a few days. The results that a person sees are gradual. It can take up to a year to see the complete results, but they are long lasting. At the moment, we cannot say they are permanent since there is not enough clinical data, but it could very well be that the results are permanent.

Cellulaze™ is becoming one of the most popular cellulite therapies in the United States. Dr. Decorato has been performing the Cellulaze™ procedure for years and can let you know if this is right for you. Dr. Decorato is a board certified plastic surgeon with an artistic eye. Plastic surgery and body contouring is as much an art as a science; you must be able to trust your chosen surgeon to sculpt your body in a way with which you will be happy. Call us today to have your in depth, personalized consultation today 718.514.6825!

Written by John W. Decorato, MD July 29, 2015

SmartLipo® Can Give You Slimmer Thighs

Smartlipo, Staten Island, New YorkDo you experience chafing between your legs? Do you find yourself avoiding certain forms of exercise such as hiking or running simply because you don’t want to irritate the skin where your thighs meet? If so, there is no doubt you will agree that having your thighs consistently rub together is not only a source of annoyance, but it can also be a source of some painful and irritating rashes.

If you are tired of feeling self-conscious, or suffering from irritation in the area where your thighs meet, it may be time to consider SmartLipo®, a procedure designed to slim and contour, so that you have more space between your inner thighs.

Lean inner thighs will help make you look and feel more attractive when wearing shorts, a miniskirt, or a swimsuit.

Exercise Exacerbates Chafing

Exercise can be your worst enemy because it causes your legs to sweat and the skin between your thighs to stick together. This, in turn, increases friction and irritation. The end result is a painful rash that will dissuade you from continuing to exercise until the chafed area has had time to heal. So you avoid exercising, which in reality is the very thing that could help you reduce the size of your thighs.

There are some temporary fixes such as petroleum ointment, lubricants, or applying lotion between your legs to minimize friction. The resultant greasy feeling on your inner thighs can be very unpleasant, however. Some recommend using talcum powder as a way to allow thighs to glide over each other.

SmartLipo® offers a permanent solution. This procedure is designed to attack stubborn thigh fat by liquefying it and then vacuuming it away. After the procedure, you are left with leaner thighs. SmartLipo® is an advanced, precision instrument.

During the procedure, very small incisions will be made in your skin, and a thin tube called a cannula is inserted. A laser, which is encased in the tube, causes the fat to melt and then a tube vacuums it away. SmartLipo® is designed to precisely target unwanted fat pockets. A side benefit of SmartLipo® is that the heat from the laser causes the body to produce collagen, which ultimately helps the skin in the treated area become tighter and smoother.

When Diet and Exercise Aren’t Enough

For many, dieting and exercise simply aren’t enough to produce the results and shape they desire, and they are forced to fight the constant “spare tire/muffin top/love handles/thunder thighs” battle.

SmartLipo® has successfully been used by many individuals to attack these problem areas. Don’t let the “chub rub” stop you from having an enjoyable night on the town or engaging in different forms of exercise. Now is the time to schedule a SmartLipo® appointment, so that when you walk or dance across the room, you can do so with confidence.

Written by John W. Decorato, MD July 14, 2015

5 Things You Should Know About Laser Hair Removal

laser hair removal, Staten Island NY, John W. Decorato Constantly dealing with unwanted body hair is a hassle that no one wants to go through. While some people do continue to shave and wax, there are long-term options out there for quickly and painlessly removing hair follicles. This includes laser hair removal, a modern treatment that could leave you with smooth and hair-free skin for weeks at a time. If you are considering your options for removing hair, take a look at these five facts about laser hair removal.

1. It Can Be Done Anywhere On the Body
Many people tend to think that laser hair removal is restricted to areas such as the legs and armpits, but this treatment option can be used practically anywhere. We have patients utilize this treatment for unwanted hair all over their body including the arms, back, upper lip, face, and bikini line.

2. Dark Hair Is Easiest to Remove
The process of removing hair with lasers is a relatively complex one. The lasers actually operate at a wavelength that is absorbed by melanin, or the dark pigment found in hair and skin. While laser hair removal can be very effective for lighter hair, the pigment found in dark hair responds wonderfully to these lasers.

3. Laser Hair Removal Is Not Permanent
Just as with shaving and waxing, laser hair removal is not going to be permanent. Luckily, it is typically going to last much longer than almost any other option as long as it is carried out correctly. Due to the fact that hair must be in the growing stage in order to be removed, we suggest that patients schedule additional touch-ups in the following weeks to remove any new hair.

4. Irritation Is Minimal
The sensation caused by laser hair removal is a unique one, and most patients describe it as a stinging feeling. Luckily, the discomfort is over quickly and is generally going to be less painful than other options such as waxing. After using the laser, the skin may be red for a short period of time, but patients will then be able to enjoy smooth skin with practically no irritations such as ingrown hairs.

5. Not All Offices Are the Same
The final thing patients should realize is that all offices are not the same. Our team takes the time to understand your own unique needs and then helps you build a treatment plan around those needs. We utilize only the most advanced tools and techniques in order to minimize discomfort without sacrificing the final results. We can also combine laser hair removal with a wide variety of other non-invasive procedures so that you can recreate your look from the ground up.

Smooth and silky skin no longer requires daily shaving or ongoing trips to the boutique for wax sessions. Instead, give Dr. Decorato a call today and set up an appointment to see if this amazing treatment is right for you.


Written by John W. Decorato, MD July 2, 2015

The Do’s and Don’ts of Breast Augmentation

Breast Aug Info, New York, NYOne of the most common types of plastic surgery procedures is breast augmentation, or breast implants. Many women make the choice to undergo this type of procedure either for cosmetic reasons or as a final step in their treatment for breast cancer. Regardless of the reason, this type of surgery can make a woman feel more confident and attractive on the inside and out.

There are a number of do’s and don’ts that women should consider before stepping foot into the operating room, however. Knowing these will help them to make the best, most informed decision to become educated about the process and the outcome.

For starters, do not be afraid to ask questions. Do not hesitate to get information from the surgeons and their staff. This can help you to feel more confident about your decision and calm your fears. As with any surgery, there are certain risks involved. Determine what those risks are and how to minimize them. The more informed you are, the greater the outcome. If the surgeon to whom you are talking rushes through his answers or doesn’t give you satisfactory information, keep looking for another surgeon. Make sure you are comfortable.

Ask your surgeon about financing plans they offer so that you can make affordable payments, if necessary. Wait until you can afford breast augmentation before scheduling it. No cosmetic surgery is worth going into debt over, especially when you can wait another six months to a year to be able to afford the payment options.

Don’t rush the healing process. You will need time to rest and restore your strength following breast augmentation surgery. Be sure to listen to your surgeon’s instructions and don’t return to your normal routine until you are advised. Know that everyone heals differently, so while your friend who underwent this surgery may have been back to her normal routines rapidly, you may need more time to feel like yourself again.

Do have realistic expectations. This type of surgery is designed to help you feel better about yourself, but it will not change your life. Give yourself time to adjust to your new appearance, but deep down, you will still be the same person.

Do know the potential risks and complications ahead of time. Talk about them with your surgeon, and ask about ways you can minimize them. Do ask to talk with women who have undergone this surgery in the past, and if anything feels uncomfortable after surgery, do not hesitate to call your surgeon to discuss it.

Written by John W. Decorato, MD June 1, 2015

The Mommy Makeover: A Growing Plastic Surgery Trend

Congratulations! You made it through childbirth, and now you are at home with your beautiful child(ren). You have accomplished one of life’s most challenging – Mommy Makeover Staten Island, New Yorkthough rewarding – experiences.
So, why don’t you feel like patting yourself on the back when you look in the mirror? Is it because you see sagging breasts, or thighs that make you think you will never get to wear that pre-pregnancy bikini ever again?
A growing trend in plastic surgery is actually a group of procedures that, when done simultaneously, can be coined a “Mommy Makeover.” This group of procedures, typically performed on young mothers, helps moms to restore their inner and outer beauty – the beauty that they knew before they had kids – and revitalize and re-energize their youthfulness.
The goal of a Mommy Makeover is to correct the many changes that a woman’s body endures after childbirth or weight gain. Most often, a Mommy Makeover consists of a tummy tuck combined with breast augmentation, and liposuction may be performed on the inner and outer thighs and other areas as well. Although these procedures are the most common ones performed during a Mommy Makeover, exact procedures may vary among patients depending on their needs and goals.
As many women can attest, their breasts often sag or “disappear” after having children, especially after breastfeeding. Their abdominal walls can become stretched, causing a belly that bulges and stretch marks. And, they may notice that their inner and outer thighs contain a lot of excess fat, as do the “love handles” that surround their abdominal area.
To treat these conditions, breast augmentation can be performed to enhance the breasts and fill them out. Some patients desire implants while others may simply need a breast lift. To rid their abdominal areas of excess fat, the surgeon may perform a tummy tuck to tighten the abdominal muscle and remove excess skin and fat. Liposuction can rid the hips, love handles and thighs of excess fat and smooth out the contours.
A Mommy Makeover is a substantial surgery, though the end result is a dramatic improvement in a woman’s post-pregnancy body – an improvement that may not even be able to be achieved through a good diet and exercise. The main advantage is that it can be done in only one surgery, rather than multiple surgeries and thus only requires one recovery period.
But perhaps the single most important aspect to the Mommy Makeover is that it can restore a mother’s confidence and self-esteem, making her feel younger and energized enough to keep up with her kids!

Written by John W. Decorato, MD April 7, 2015

The Facts Behind Facelifts

In a world often obsessed with youthfulness, the desire to fight aging is becoming increasingly popular. More and more people are seeking ways to retain a youthful2737102 appearance, and often seek out plastic surgery procedures to help them.

Unfortunately, the face is one of the most susceptible areas to aging. The loose, thin skin around the eyes and cheeks can hinder a person’s self-confidence and their relationships. A facelift, however, may help to restore a youthful appearance improving self-esteem and restoring confidence in their associations with others.

A facelift, also known as rhytidectomy surgery, is a technique that is used to tighten the skin around the face. It can help to reduce wrinkles and fine lines and make a person look younger. This type of surgery can even reverse the aging process and help restore lost vitality in the face.

Over time, the facelift procedure has been improved to the point where it can even be done with minimal impact on a person’s busy schedule. And with many different types of facelifts that are now available and performed by qualified and skilled surgeons, a person can choose the surgery that best fits their needs, budget and goals.

During a facelift, the surgeon will make incisions both in front of and behind the ears extending along the hairline. The skin is then elevated to allow lifting of the underlying fat and muscle and use sutures to lift and reposition this layer in a more youthful appearing position. Once this layer has been tightened and repositioned, any excess skin is trimmed.

The lower facelift is similar to the facelift, though it focuses entirely on the lower part of the face – mainly the neck and jawline. An incision is made behind the ears, and the excess skin is removed from the neck.

A mini facelift is becoming popular, as it is a smaller and less intensive procedure and can be performed relatively quickly. Instead of a complete lift, the surgeon targets specific areas of the face where he repositions and removes small amounts of facial tissue.

Written by John W. Decorato, MD March 2, 2015

Liposuction: Choose the Type Best Suited for You

Liposuction, Staten Island NY, Manhattan NY - DecoratoMany people who adhere to even the most strict diet and rigorous exercise regimen often suffer from unsightly fatty deposits on areas of their bodies that could potentially be helped with the assistance of liposuction.

Generally speaking, liposuction is a method whereby the surgeon removes fat from the body using a suction or vacuum. During the procedure, a small, thin, blunt-tipped tube is inserted through tiny incisions in the skin. Fat is then removed through these tubes as he moves the tubes around under the skin to target specific deposits of fat.

There have been several advancements made during recent years that help to make this surgery safer, easier and much less painful. These newer techniques include:
• Tumescent Liposuction – During this procedure, the surgeon uses a local anesthetic to numb the area of the body where the tube will be inserted and the fat will be suctioned. A large amount of water containing the anesthetic lidocaine and epinephrine is injected into the fatty tissue before the suctioning begins. The water “plumps” the fat making removal easier with minimal bleeding and bruising.

Tumescent liposuction may be regarded as a tremendous improvement in the standard of liposuction, as it carries fewer risks and side effects. These side effects are minimal due to the smaller size of the tubes used and the initial incisions made during the procedure.

Ultrasonic-assisted Liposuction – This technique, called UAL, employs the use of sound waves to liquefy the fat, making it easier for the surgeon to remove. This procedure is generally most effective in removing larger areas of fat from the lower abdomen, sides and back.

There are several benefits to UAL, including that it can more effectively treat areas containing denser fat pockets, such as the chin and neck, than traditional methods. UAL also can remove more fat cells at once, making it an optimal procedure for areas such as the thighs, buttocks or abdomen. And, UAL works to tighten the skin during the process of removing the fat, which aids the areas treated in avoiding dimpling or puckering after surgery. This type of surgery also is considered more precise for the surgeon, so he can perform more exact body contouring.

• Laser-assisted Liposuction – The surgeon uses laser energy to liquefy the fat, which is then removed through a very small liposuction cannula or tube.

Because laser-assisted liposuction is less intrusive, recovery time is substantially reduced. Patients can expect to generally decrease recovery time by one to two days, as this procedure decreases the amount of blood loss and bruising. Patients also may experience less post-operative pain, as this type of procedure only targets the “yellow fat” in the body, allowing the body to absorb some of fat on its own without the use of any suction. The laser energy is also absorbed by the overlying skin resulting in significant skin tightening. This procedure may alleviate need to undergo further surgery to remove excess skin. It is especially helpful in areas where limited fat reduction and more skin tightening are required for optimal results, such as inner thighs, arms and neck.

No matter which type of procedure you choose, it will most likely be performed on an outpatient basis in a physician’s office, ambulatory surgery center or hospital. It usually does not require an overnight hospital stay unless you are having a large amount of fat removed. The use of local anesthetic is usually required, and you also may be given a sedative to help you relax.

The cost of Liposuction can vary on what goals you are trying to accomplish. It is very important to know your surgeon and their credentials and also make sure that it is an accredited facility.

Written by John W. Decorato, MD February 6, 2015

The Health Benefits of Tummy Tucks

4338450We all want it – the tighter, toned abdomen that exposes the six-pack abs we worked so hard for at the gym. But some people, even with a lot of time spent at the gym, still experience a great deal of fat around their abdomen. And others cave to that plate of French fries, despite their initial intention to satisfy their hunger pains with a salad.

Abdominal fat, or fat that pushes the belly outward, is the most dangerous type of fat on our bodies. Abdominal fat is largely to blame for many health ailments because of its close proximity to other vital health organs, such as the liver and kidneys, and it can be to blame for many serious health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.
Tummy tucks, which are also known as abdominoplasty, are an option for people who want to slim their waistline and lose that excess fat, whether it be for cosmetic reasons or to help them manage a health condition. In fact, there are more benefits of a tummy tuck than people often realize.

A tummy tuck will aid in tightening your abdominal muscles and firming your belly, providing a flatter appearance and a reduction in the size of your waistline. A tummy tuck also can help eliminate unsightly stretch marks below the navel and can help a woman to more quickly return to her pre-pregnancy size. In certain instances, the procedure can help alleviate fungal infections that occasionally occur from the large amount of sagging skin folds, particularly in patients who have undergone bariatric surgery.

Perhaps the greatest benefit to this surgery, however, is that, when performed correctly by Dr. Decorato, a knowledgeable and skilled surgeon, it can not only properly tuck a protruding belly, but it gives the appearance that the belly was never protruding in the first place.

In many patients who experience the signs of aging or who have recently been pregnant; they begin to observe their abdominal muscles separating at their midlines. This separation can reduce the strength in the abdominal muscles and cause the skin to sag, and is a condition known as rectus diastasis. It can be treated in its early stages through exercise, but a tummy tuck may become necessary if the condition advances.

The benefits of a tummy tuck can be maintained for a long period of time with proper care of the body. Weight gain and pregnancy can negate the effects of this cosmetic procedure, and if this happens, you will need to undergo another surgery to achieve the prior results.

Written by John W. Decorato, MD December 2, 2014

Sitting Pretty With PicoSure™

PicoSure Staten Island, NY and New York, NYTattoo regret. Many people suffer from it.

One day you love “John” so much that you ink his name across your wrist. The next day he’s broken your heart and you’re left with an unwelcome reminder every time you lift your hand.

Now there is a more efficient way to “erase” that mistake, thanks to PicoSure, the world’s first and only picosecond aesthetic laser. Even better, Dr. John W. Decorato  is the one of the only board-certified plastic surgeon offering this breakthrough technology on Staten Island, and one of only a handful of doctors offering the technology in the tri-state area..

PicoSure is more than just a way to deal with tattoos. This Cynosure®  product can also treat surgical and acne scars, remove pigmented lesions and revitalize skin.

The key to PicoSure is its ultra-short pulse bursts of energy which are delivered to your skin in trillionths of a second. Unlike nanosecond lasers, which typically rely on photothermal energy to reach the pigment and surrounding tissue, the patented PressureWave™ technology of PicoSure uses a pulse width that is 100 times shorter. This means it can more precisely target the problem area, breaking apart pigment into smaller pieces which can be absorbed by the body. It also causes less trauma to the surrounding skin.

Due to the advantages of PicoSure, it takes only three to six sessions to remove a tattoo. Compare that to other methods which require up to 20 treatments! With PicoSure, even dark blue and green inks, which can be particularly difficult, can be removed, as well as previously-treated, recalcitrant tattoos.

If you are interested in learning more about PicoSure, contact Dr. Decorato’s office today. Our plastic surgery team strives to be at the forefront of breakthrough technology. In fact, Dr. Decorato is still only one of a handful of plastic surgeons on Staten Island to offer CoolSculpting® .

We are pleased to provide PicoSure to patients from throughout the Staten Island region. We would be happy to release you from your tattoo regret, or any other pigmentation or scarring issues you may have.

Written by John W. Decorato, MD September 5, 2014