Highly renowned and Dubai based plastic surgeon Dr. Luiz Toledo is a leading light in the ever changing field of cosmetic procedures. With a wealth of experience and a stellar reputation which he has deservedly earnt through time, he is the elusive mix that UAE residents trust when making the decision when and if to have invasive or non-invasive procedures.
Social media bombards us with images of beautiful people who appear to have it all. This leads to us asking questions like… If only I had a flatter stomach, then I would feel comfortable in a bikini. If my nose was smaller, would I be more confident. Dr. Toledo performs hundreds of cosmetic procedures for these very beauty concerns. But, he’s also here to tell you, “not so fast,” when it comes to your internal “if only” dialogue. As much as surgeons love to perform surgery, sometimes it is not the answer and not in the best interest of a patient.
BEAUTY AND SELF-ESTEEM
Beauty is a powerful thing. attraction to beauty is hard wired into humanity’s DNA, so there’s no escaping the fact that beauty truly does matter. It is inescapable and natural to desire beauty, and there is no doubt that increasing physical beauty can increase one’s positive body image.
What we need to remember is that beauty is not the only aspect that needs to be addressed for a healthy self-esteem. Many people try to work on the external beauty without addressing the internal beauty…. This is impossible as the two are entwined in a spiral relationship, and a balance is the key to success. A positive body image is achieved in many ways, including diet, exercise, surgical or non-invasive procedures. A combination of these is powerful and achieves long lasting results. Sometimes, unflattering physical characteristics like asymmetric breasts, loose skin after pregnancy, disproportionate facial features or physical deformities cause mental anguish and aren’t treatable with diet and exercise alone. These individuals are good candidates for surgical procedures.
Dr Luiz, how long have you been practicing, and when did you open your surgery in Dubai?
I have been practicing as a Plastic Surgeon for more than 35 years and have been involved with the teaching and the organisation of Congresses around the world for almost as long. I started working in Dubai and the Middle East initially as a visiting surgeon in 2004, settling permanently in Dubai in 2006.
It is clear that surgery is an excellent option for many men and women who want to bolster their self-esteem. In your experience after performing countless procedures, do you find that your patients have a better sense of wellbeing after procedures/surgery?
I am happy to say that yes, the majority of my patients have a better sense of wellbeing after the surgery. From the start we discuss all options available, patients expectations and realistic outcomes, this allows us to decide upon the best and most appropriate procedure. Thereafter it is a case of the surgeon using his experience and technical skills to deliver the results. Patient expectation is one of the big questions that need to be understood and addressed fully during the initial consultation. There are many occasions when the patients’ expectation cannot be met, for example, undergoing a breast implant surgery will probably not win back your husband. Similarly, a patient expecting the results of a facelift, but only willing to undergo Botox injections and fillers can only be disappointed.
In your consultations with patients, what is the process of evaluating how best to achieve their goals, and when to progress from noninvasive to invasive surgery?
During the consultation, we will of course discuss the patient’s goals for the surgery if that is the route we decide to go. Often a patient will bring in a photograph of the look he or she wants. This is helpful and I can immediately evaluate if this is going to be achievable or not. The non-invasive techniques, although not entirely, are best suited to younger patients. Invasive surgery is usually prescribed for the older patient where skin quality and laxity is becoming an issue.
What type of approach do you have when you preparing your patients for surgery?
Once the procedure is agreed upon, we explain in detail the postoperative journey to be expected and how the patient is now required to enhance the surgeons’ work by following closely the instructions given. Post-op visits to the clinic are scheduled and need to be honoured so the surgeon can keep a close eye on the recovery process. Pre-surgery tests are done and the patient always has a consultation with the anaesthetist. We offer a computer imaging consultation so the patient can understand the limits of the surgical technique and the surgeon can verify if it is possible to achieve the patient’s expectations. This is particularly helpful in nose surgery. We offer all kinds of pre and post op help to our patients such as lymphatic drainage, skin care before and after the facelift and more. All patients are educated and advised on how to best maintain their new form through post-operative care, this coupled with an intelligent diet and exercise routine ensures the best results.
In the ever changing world of cosmetic procedures and technologies, are there any that you feel are outstanding (cutting edge or tried and tested), and which achieve the best results?
I can say that I have been using Coolplas (cryotherapy for localised fat deposits) now for 5 years with very good results. We can now offer our patients, who are reluctant to go into surgery, an option to reduce local fat deposits with the use of this machine.