While Fisher does service reconstructive surgery patients at her practice, most of her business consists of aesthetic cases. The “mommy makeover” procedure she offers has proven popular with women whose child bearing days are behind them.
“I always say you’re never too old for a mommy makeover,” quips Fisher, herself the mother of a young child. The doctor says the procedure is among her favorite to perform.
The makeover usually entails a combination of surgeries to the breasts (possibly in the form of a lift, augmentation or reduction) and abdomen, including what’s commonly called a tummy tuck. Also, quite a bit of liposuction may be involved in the process.
Mommy makeover patients—and their reasons for requesting the procedure—run the gamut, Fisher explained. “Sometimes it’s the day they know they’re done having kids,” she says. “If they’re older, in their 40s or 50s, sometimes they will say, ‘OK, I have basically financed my last kid and I’m ready to do something for me now.’”
While “Mommy Makeover” results are often favorable, Fisher counsels patients to set realistic expectation levels for their body’s appearance after the surgery.
“There’s a saying that you have to rob Peter to pay Paul because you can’t get something for nothing.” With cosmetic surgery procedures, she says, “You’re trading in sagging skin and a poor shape for scars.
“For most people the tradeoff is well worth it because they hate their shape, the amount of sagging skin they have, the extra fat in certain places that they can’t get rid of their stretch marks. I have to try to shape the tissues and try to give them the best scar that I possibly can.”
Despite the fact that breast augmentation surgery has become commonplace, “You really have to educate (patients) about the risks involved,” she explained. “It is a real surgery with a real surgeon performing the operation. There is a risk in everything—bleeding, scarring, and potential emergencies. It’s a big deal.”
The same goes for patients who consult with Fisher after losing a large amount of weight (either through diet and exercise or via bariatric surgery) in hopes of removing the resulting excess skin. “For people who’ve lost a hundred or more pounds … that skin takes a major hit and it stretches beyond repair. It has, a lot of times, no capacity to come back at all,” she says.
“Even in the best of hands, getting the contour that you would for somebody to be on the cover of a magazine or in a beauty pageant is not going to happen. It is going to improve, and sometimes it improves dramatically, but just managing those expectations and making sure that you’re on the same page as the person coming in to see you (as a patient), sometimes it’s really hard.”
While it is “impossible to achieve somebody’s ideal image of perfection,” she said, “if their expectations are realistic to where they understand it’s about reaching a certain goal for them within their own body and their own skin and under their own circumstances, those people can have dramatic results.”
Meanwhile, Fisher also keeps abreast of the latest advances in “non-invasive, non-surgical modalities of facial rejuvenation,” such as Botox for wrinkles, soft tissue fillers and special skincare options. “People are demanding more of that,” she said. “They don’t want as much down time from work or from taking care of their families” as is typically required to recover from traditional surgical procedures.
Interestingly enough, some patients have pointed to Fisher’s own full lips as the type of plump pout they wish to possess.
“It’s amazing to me because when I was growing up, (plump) lips were not in,” she said. “I got made fun of for these lips, and now I have people asking me, ‘Have you done this to your lips? I want yours.’”
No matter what type of procedure she performs, “My ultimate goal is to help (patients) make their own personal goal happen,” Fisher said. “When somebody tells you that they’ve waited 20 years to be able to save up for enough money to have this surgery, that they’ve never done a single thing for themselves and you’ve helped make their dream come true, that is amazing.”
– Photography by Joe Durkin of PhojoPhoto, LLC