When Harvard graduate, scientist, and cosmetic surgeon, Dr. David Whitten was introduced to suture suspension lift (SSL) using Serdev-Reynolds techniques, he began to consider opening a body sculpting practice. In 2010, Dr. Whitten attended a national meeting of physicians in Las Vegas, and he was introduced to Dr. Dwight Reynolds, a surgeon from Florida. Dr. Reynold’s exhibit showed before and after photos of his patients who had benefited from the suture suspension technique. “I was very intrigued,” Dr. Whitten says.
Dr. Whitten also learned about Dr. Nicolai Serdev, a famous European plastic surgeon who originated the technique, initially used to prolong the careers of the Eastern European supermodels. “I discovered that for certain areas of the body, a very attractive lift can be accomplished in a couple of hours in an outpatient setting utilizing a simple and minimally invasive technique,” Dr. Whitten says.
Immediately, Dr. Whitten decided to travel to Florida and study the technique with Dr. Reynolds who had studied directly under Dr. Serdev. “As it turns out, for face-lifts, buttock lifts, breast lifts, brow lifts, and thigh lifts, the SSL technique offers an inexpensive way to achieve results that rival and even improve upon results that normally require extensive and expensive plastic surgery,” Dr. Whitten says. “This was such a revelation that I decided to found my practice based on the SSL technique.”
With his wife, Susan Whitten, as his partner, the couple has expanded their practice dramatically to include much more than just the suture suspension lift, yet SSL was impetus for the formation of the Beauty and Wellness Center in Texarkana today. “I was on a search and I felt at home at the Beauty and Wellness Center. Dr. Whitten is a kind soul, a sweet spirit, and I knew that I could trust my face with him,” Beauty and Wellness patient, Dr. Mary Adele Philips says. “Dr. Whitten, Susan, and their entire team, they really care about who I am. I am so grateful that I didn’t have to leave Texarkana to have something done.”
Dr. Mary Adele Phillips decided to have a mid and lower face suture suspension lift in order to age gracefully, and she says she would do it again. “Having the lift motivated me,” Phillips says. My beauty being restored has given me the courage to pursue my dreams.”
Though the Beauty and Wellness Center is not a traditional plastic surgery practice, for tissues that are amenable to the technique, SSL offers a direct competition with traditional plastic surgery lifts. “SSL allows for a very comparable result that can be achieved in a morning or afternoon office procedure with minimal downtime and rapid, scarless recovery,” Dr. Whitten says.
The most popular lifts at Beauty and Wellness are facelifts, particularly the midface and the lower facelift. With these lifts, Dr. Whitten says that patients will see a marked and long-term improvement in sagging of the midface, the cheeks, the lips, the jowls, the nasolabial folds, the “smile lines,” the marionette lines, and the sagging neck. A combination midface and lower face lift can produce a marked improvement in all these features in a 2-3 hour surgery with mild sedation and local anesthesia. “Most of our patients choose to get a lift because they want to refresh their facial appearance to reverse some of the inevitable tissue sagging that occurs with age. While aging obviously continues, our patients typically feel as if their lift survives for at least 10 years – and the lift can be repeated if desired to take care of additional sagging due to the influence of gravity and tissue effects of growing older,” Dr. Whitten says. “Technically, the SSL provides a ‘permanent’ effect in that the specific lifted tissue will not sag again – the procedure stabilizes the lifted tissue permanently.”
Dr. Whitten says that SSL can also achieve excellent results in breast lifts and buttock lifts. “If breasts are overly dependent and sagging, we can restore the more youthful and perky appearance that allows a woman to feel ever so much more beautiful, again, without scarring or dramatic incisions,” Dr. Whitten says. “The same is true for buttocks – an SSL butt lift can produce a much more rounded and perky bottom with elongation of the thigh and generally a much more youthful appearance. A similar technique can be applied to sagging thighs in many cases, as well as to the eyebrows.”
At Beauty and Wellness, patients can reap the benefits of the SSL lifts for midface, lower face and neck, brow, breast, buttocks, and thighs. Breast and buttock lifts can also be combined with fat transfer for augmentation. However, not all patients will qualify for these lifts. Men and women who are most suitable for a suture suspension procedure are between the ages of 25 and 60 and who have adequate but not excessive subcutaneous fat. “We have performed SSL on patients who are older than 60, but people who have too much or too little adipose tissue can be problematic. Therefore we need to see the patient ‘in the flesh’ before we can say with certainty that they will benefit from the procedure,” Dr. Whitten says. “We can generally simulate the effect in the mirror so the patient can see approximately what the final result of the lift may be.”
Throughout the years, Debbie Brower, a Beauty and Wellness patient, debated having a facelift, but she just couldn’t make the commitment. However, after meeting Dr. Whitten, she felt like she had the answer to her dilemma. “I chose to have suture suspension done both on my face and breasts. This lift has been amazing! Not only is it minimally invasive, but it is also something that allowed me to return to work in just a couple of days looking so much better!” Brower says. “I would absolutely do it again because I love the way it made me look. I no longer have deep lines on my ‘jowls,’ as I call them, and my neck looks amazing! The neck, face, and breast lift gave me the boost of confidence I needed!”
For potential patients, the staff at Beauty and Wellness will walk through every step of the procedure with them. Their only goal is for their patients to feel comfortable and confident about their choice to have a lift.
Sharon, a Beauty and Wellness patient, says that she researched all kinds of surgeries and ways to look younger, but she was just scared of a traditional facelift. She was looking for something that would not be so drastic. “I want to still look natural, but I wanted a fresher look,” Sharon says. “I ended up getting a mid and lower face two point lift at Beauty and Wellness, and I highly recommend Dr. Whitten and his staff. I appreciate the way I was treated, and I love the way I look. I would definitely do it again.”
As previous patients have attested, the need for downtime after the procedure is minimal. Dr. Whitten says that there may be moderate swelling, but rarely is there significant bruising or bleeding. Some temporary wrinkling of the skin behind the lifted tissue may persist for 2-3 weeks but this wrinkling is temporary and is easily masked by a patient’s hair style.
Debra, a Beauty and Wellness patient was very nervous and afraid to have surgery, but she loved that the SSL midface lift was much less invasive than a traditional life. “Dr. Whitten made me feel very comfortable, and I loved that my surgery was a family affair with Dr. Whitten, his wife, Susan and her son Parker,” Debra says. “I would do it again and may purchase another Venus Package just because I liked coming so often. The treatments were very effective and felt amazing.”
For a person who has an interest in achieving a more youthful and vibrant appearance without engaging in very expensive classic plastic surgery, Dr. Whitten asks that they telephone to schedule a consultation in person. “They will get all questions answered and be given a professional opinion as to what they can hope to achieve with a suture suspension lift. It’s very important to know what the desired final outcome may be, because the answer to their hopes may lie with SSL or with some other procedure that we perform, including possible liposuction, fat transfer, or other procedures,” Dr. Whitten says. “We will look at the tissues in question, simulate the appearance of the lift in the mirror and discuss the best ways to achieve their desired result, ultimately giving them a quote as to the cost of the procedure or procedures they desire.”
Vanessa, a Beauty and Wellness patient says that SSL on her mid and lower face made her feel like a new person. “Dr. Whitten, Susan and the staff at Beauty and Wellness always make you feel so good about yourself. You can go into their office on a bad day, and by the time you walk out, you will have a smile on your face,” Vanessa says. “The Beauty and Wellness Center loves all of their patients, and it shows. They really care about you. I highly recommend the Suture Suspension Surgery and anything else that they do. All of your beauty and wellness needs are in one office.”
The Traditional Lift Replacement:
The Reynolds-Serdev Technique can, in most cases, replace traditional lifts at a fraction of the cost and with no social down-time. Patients are never put to sleep, and their results will last for years.
Popular Suture Suspension Lifts include:
Face lifts- Replace a sad, sagging face with a happy face! Create a younger and more natural appearance.
Buttocks lifts- Narrow the buttocks while giving the appearance of more volume and lift. Elongate the legs.
Breast lifts- Lift the breast approximately 1-2 inches via a scarless puncture wound. Particularly beneficial to women who often suffer from keloiding from traditional breast lifts.
Chin lifts- Change the angle of the chin to give a more beautiful look. Bring the chin in line with the jaw line.
Eyebrow lifts- Lift forehead skin and open up your eyes with lifted brows.
Nose top refinement- Create a smaller nasal tip.
Nose angle refinement- Reduce the size of the alarbase.
Ear refinements (Auriculoplasty)- Draw the ears closer to the head.
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