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Book Reviews
Appeared in CosmeticSurgery.com, November 2007

A Little Nip, A Little Tuck (MDPUBLISH)

There’s no denying the surge in popularity that cosmetic surgery has experienced in recent years. Today, the stigma of “having work done” has all but disappeared from the cultural landscape.

In his new book, “A Little Nip, A Little Tuck – Age Defying Procedures That Really Work,” Stephen T. Greenberg, M.D., F.A.C.S. writes that while the average age of cosmetic surgery patients is still in the range of 35 to 50, people from all walks of life are taking notice of its benefits – and they aren’t necessarily snickering.

In the book’s introduction, citing an American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) statistic which reveals the surprising average income of first-time candidates, he implies that the decrease in procedure costs may have something to do with this phenomenon. It seems that as more people realize they can, indeed, squeeze an elective procedure into their budgets, they are flicking on the off switch on plastic surgery criticism.

Increasingly, this is becoming true for men as well as women. Dr. Greenberg cautions men that the “haphazard approach to grooming” is no longer considered chic.

When society’s obsession with youth spills over into the workplace, and the standards of business shift in favor of younger (and less experienced) men, we know that times have changed. As men come to terms with this reality, they are also more likely to embrace the advancement potential that cosmetic surgery offers them.

We have our good friend the Internet to thank for the opportunity to perform more of our own research. However, some of us prefer to gather all of our facts from one convenient source. Dr. Greenberg’s manual, designed for beginners, is by far one of the most comprehensive and concise new guides around. In it, he breaks down chapters by procedure – and yes, all the big ones are discussed! Whether you are on the cusp of considering trendy dermal fillers, breast augmentation, liposuction, or good old rhinoplasty, Dr. Greenberg has you covered (that’s not all, though – body lifts, eyelid surgery, and laser treatments are in here as well). Staying true to the times, he also devotes a section solely to cosmetic surgery for men.

Right off the bat, he acknowledges that some who pick up the book may not have even begun the process of selecting a plastic surgeon. Unfortunately, not everyone can visit Dr. Greenberg’s New York City office; for that reason, he presents “Choosing Doctor Right” in the first chapter. The importance of choosing a board certified plastic surgeon is made plain immediately. If you were considering a surgeon who talked “discounts” due to his lack of credentials, Dr. Greenberg is here to convince you otherwise.

Need another one? If a surgeon did a great job on your friend’s facelift, does that make him the right choice to perform your breast augmentation? Wondering what percentage of American parents are considering cosmetic surgery for themselves in the future? Want to break it down by ethnicity?

Each chapter is outlined by segments such as “What’s Hot/What’s Not,” “Greenberg’s List” (addressing Top 10 questions and the like), “How We Do It” (detailed procedure descriptions), and “What to Expect Afterward.” Leaving no stone unturned, Dr. Greenberg includes a “Potential Pitfalls” section, as well as a sidebar on proper aftercare for each procedure presented. A humanizing element, “Straight from the Heart,” wraps up the chapters with a personal anecdote from someone who fits each procedure’s average patient profile.

While this is a great format that makes for easy reading, sometimes you just want to get the info and get out (or in this case, close the book). When you awaken at 3 a.m. with the burning question, “Which injectable dermal fillers contain hyaluronic acid, and which ones are made of human-based collagen?,” Dr. Greenberg offers handy, “at a glance” charts that tell you what you need to know in an easy-to-find fashion, eliminating the fuss of scanning through text. Other charts and sidebars include fast facts and statistics on topics, such as average fees for each procedure, the duration of surgical procedures, longevity of results, medications to give up prior to surgery (you’ll be surprised!), and yes, some fun stuff, including Dr. Greenberg’s Top 5 celebrity breast requests.

The book concludes with an Appendix featuring procedure information geared specifically toward specialized categories of patients – in this case, brides and teens. For the woman who needs a timetable for recovery before the wedding, or the parent who is on the fence about granting her child permission – and payment – for a procedure, these bullet points can be invaluable.

Whether you have just started researching procedures, or have already attended your initial consultation, this book is a must-have to help you become informed and prepared for the big day.

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