Patient Portal

Ezine 1 September 2002

Dear Friend,

Welcome to the second issue of my ezine. It is truly amazing how many more people we’ve had sign up. Tell all your friends and neighbors! It’s free and a fun way to learn about plastic surgery. I was pleased with the tremendous number of questions I received. I thought I’d pick out a few and let you see how I answered them. I again thank everyone for their interest and ideas. Keep emailing your questions…

Our first question is from TH:

Email Question - Are liposuction/body contouring procedures performed in a hospital? (not office). Email Answer - I do not perform any cosmetic surgery in the office - only in accredited and state licensed facilities (of course, I do not mean anything done without sedation or general anesthesia like collagen, Botox, laser etc.).

I currently work out of about 6 hospitals and another 7 surgery centers. The choice is yours as to where you chose to have your procedure - hospital or surgery center. Obviously the cost is different depending on which one you chose. Remember, one of the safest ways to know your surgeon is the real deal – ask him if he has privileges to do the operation he wants to do in his office, at a real hospital!! Many non plastic surgeons cannot get hospital privileges for a particular procedure (since they have no training in that field and should not be doing that procedure).

Be realistic though. They can easily (and often do) lie to you. Call the hospital and check for yourself. Don’t just ask if they work there. Ask specifically about privileges to do that particular procedure at that hospital. Another trick they use is to tell you they never do that at a hospital, only a surgery center. Some surgery centers allow anyone to do anything they want. They sometimes easily grant privileges. They just want a surgeon’s business. A surgeon bringing them cases (and them making money) is a nice justification for them.

I almost hate to tell you this next point. My intention is not to make you neurotic or paranoid. Sometimes, though, even hospitals are easily swayed into giving someone privileges for something they should not. Unfortunately, there are corrupt and greedy people everywhere. However, your chances of having a real plastic surgeon are much greater if he actually has hospital privileges for that particular procedure.

One last thing. Maybe he is a real plastic surgeon. Maybe he really does have privileges to perform a procedure in the hospital. Shouldn’t you check and make sure he still does?? When surgeons are having a lot of complications, they can lose their privileges. Isn’t this something you might wanna know about?

By the way, we were on channel 2 talking about office-based surgery twice in July. One last thing to remember – as of July 2002, any plastic surgeon caught doing any surgery in a non-accredited surgery center (including his office), will be suspended for one year.

You won’t know until you ask.

Remember the American Board of Plastic Surgery is the board you want your plastic surgeon to be certified with. Check with them and make sure he is still a board certified member in good standing. Their site is

Our next question is from BM:

Email Question - I have several flat brown moles on my face that i want removed. I recently had a few moles tested with the laser and after 2 treatment the moles seem to fade away and then come back after a couple of weeks. Is this because they are too deep? I' ve also heard that there is another laser available which will remove them but may leave a white spot instead, is this true?

Email Answer - There are 2 different ways to remove moles with laser.

The first laser technique is ablative (that is destructive, where you take off the top layer. It usually takes about 1 week to heal in and the area is usually lighter. This destructive laser is equivalent to burning, freezing, shaving etc. You end up with some redness in that area that eventually becomes white (like a scar) and slightly less pigmented then the surrounding skin.

The second laser technique is non ablative. This is the one with no down time. The area seems to get darker, come to the surface within 1 week and fall off. There is usually no skin damage and a much more natural look. This can take 1 to 8 treatments all depending on size, type of mole, skin type etc. Most moles need 1-3 treatments. When you are happy with the removal with this technique (you keep getting treatments until you are), it is very important to perform some kind of maintenance program - skin care, sun block, laser etc. The maintenance program helps maintain results (by suppressing your pigment cells). Again, it is very different if we are talking about one mole or the hundreds of little moles some people have.

To be perfectly honest, you can do 1 or 2 moles, but most people prefer and I usually recommend getting the whole face treated (Fotofacial). You get a much better result, looks very natural etc. You can check out the pictures on my site at

No other plastic surgeon I know has ever had an ezine. They don't know how to tell others about what they do, what they should ask other surgeons etc. Some have a boring stuffy newsletter that is preprinted and they just add their name or something. This is not like that! You will not find useless stuff intended to get you to come in and see me and spend money in my office. Just help. Information. Remember knowledge is power.

Email me – ask whatever you want. You are the ones that will help make this ezine fun and exciting. What do you want to know?? Ask anything! Ask away…

Best regards,

Dr. Sam Speron

Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon

P.S. I want everyone to remember I’m doing this for you. I want everyone to become a well-informed consumer. But, I also want it to be easy and fun to read. I want you to look forward to getting it. Email me. What’s boring? What’s exciting to you? Let me know. You are the heart and soul of this newsletter. Are we having fun yet??