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Sentara Martha Jefferson Monday: What is Body Contouring?

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) -

The focus of this week's Sentara Martha Jefferson Monday is body contouring - what it is, who it's for, and how the procedure works.  We spoke with Dr. Victoria Vastine, a plastic surgeon with Sentara Martha Jefferson Aesthetic and Reconstructive Surgery, to find out more

Body contouring is a large category that includes a variety of procedures performed by plastic surgeons. Liposuction, tummy tucks and breast augmentation are all forms of body contouring.

“Body contouring is any procedure that is done to alter or change the contour of the body, usually with the goal being to bring it into better balance,” noted Dr. Vastine. “That can include reducing an area that’s out of proportion, increasing a certain area, or reducing extra skin.” 

Dr. Vastine says that while body contouring procedures can be used for many things, one particular group of people it can help are those who have lost large amounts of weight.

"A lot of people who have had a significant amount of weight loss, particularly those who've had weight loss surgery, are very happy with their improvements overall health, but they find it difficult to look into the mirror and see all of that extra skin," she stated.

Body contouring helps to eliminate that extra skin.

"Most often it's a procedure that requires general anesthesia in a hospital, in an operating room setting that can take anywhere from three to five hours," Dr. Vastine explained.

Candidates for the procedure need to be at or near their ideal goal weight and they also need to be able to commit to the recovery time after surgery. Those recovery times vary depending on the procedure.  For some procedures recovery is just a few days, while other more invasive procedures require up to four to five weeks of recovery.

If you are interested in body contouring, the best first step is to have an open mind, and talk with a physician about the options that might be best for you. 

“A good candidate for body contouring is someone who is otherwise healthy, who has no major medical problems, who is at their ideal body weight, but more importantly, someone whose body weight is stable,” said Dr. Vastine. 

It’s also important to note that body contouring isn’t about weight loss. “Body contouring is really trying to bring areas that are out of proportion into better proportion so that as a whole you look balanced,” noted Dr. Vastine. 

For those who are ready to sign up, personalizing the procedure to your specific needs is always the doctor's number one priority.

For more information on this topic, please call 1-800-SENTARA. If you have a question about your health you’d like us to answer, email healthquestions@nbc29.com

Sentara Martha Jefferson Monday

Do you have health questions? Get the answers every Monday morning from the experts in our feature: Sentara Martha Jefferson Monday.

Jenn Downs will meet with the experts of Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital and ask them your questions. You’ll see and hear the answers during NBC29 News at Sunrise every Monday morning.

To submit your questions, email them to healthquestions@nbc29.com. Then, tune in every Monday morning during NBC29 News at Sunrise for Sentara Martha Jefferson Monday.

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