Cosmetic & Reconstructive Plastic Surgery / Skin Cancer Specialists / Appearance Medicine

faq's

Surgery of any type is a big deal. Arming yourself with the right advice, expertise and answers before undergoing any procedure is essential to successful outcomes. Our team provide quantified guidance and care across all our cosmetic, reconstructive, skin cancer and appearance medicine procedures. Delivering you greater peace-of-mind and best results.

How long will my initial consultation take?

  • Breast augmentation / breast reconstruction = 45min
  • Rhinoplasty / abdominoplasty / liposuction / facelift / blepheroplasty etc. = 30min
  • Combinations e.g. breast + abdominoplasty = extended appointment = 60min
  • Skin cancer / hand  surgery / scar revisions / most ACC = 20min
  • Appearance medicine / Belkyra / CoolSculpting = 20min

Ensuring your comfort

  • Each procedure and each individual is different, but many plastic surgery procedures are performed on an outpatient basis.
  • More extensive procedures may require a one or two night stay. You will be advised of these details during your initial consultation with our surgeons.
  • Your safety and comfort is of the utmost importance to us. With this in mind, we have chosen to work with the dedicated team of highly trained theatre staff at Tauranga’s Grace Hospital.
  • All sedation and general anaesthesia is performed by a qualified specialist anaethetist, Dr Justin Imrie.
  • Just as each individual has a different pain threshold, so too do individual plastic surgery procedures carry different levels of discomfort. Your preference’s for safety and comfort are carefully considered and will help determine what type of anaesthesia will be used.
  • Topical anaesthetic is typically used for minor and non-invasive surgeries. Injected local anaesthetic, sometimes combined with a sedative, is used for minor invasive surgeries. For more involved surgery, general anaesthetic is typically required.
    Post-operative pain is assessed on an individual basis and you will be monitored closely to ensure the appropriate level of pain control is prescribed for you. Most facial cosmetic operations have minimal post-operative discomfort.

Recovery and Post-Operative care

  • By law, you are not permitted to drive for 24 hours following a general anaesthetic or any procedure involving intravenous sedation. We recommend you organise someone to drive you after any local procedure and certainly for any procedure done under sedation at Grace Hospital.
  • For abdominoplasties, TRAMS and some other breast operations, we strongly advise patients not to drive for two weeks post-operatively.
  • In order to assist your return to normal activities, patients are encouraged to begin a slow walking routine two days after their operation. More vigorous aerobic activities are not allowed during the first two weeks. Why? To decrease the risk of bleeding, swelling and bruising. Contact sports should be avoided for four-to-six weeks, for most patients.
  • Many patients need to know how soon they can return to work post-surgery, in order to carefully schedule their surgery.  Every procedure is different and there is a lot of variability between individuals – influenced by job type, which recreational activities you enjoy and so forth. During your initial consultation with your plastic surgeon, our surgeons will provide guidelines for your expected recovery time.
  • Our nurses are available to discuss your post-operative care and recovery with you at any time. We understand concerns do arise and welcome all enquiries. Please call the plastic surgery nurses on, 07 578 5350 or email, plastic.nurse@davinciclinic.co.nz

Scarring

  • Plastic surgery is concerned with the optimal aesthetic outcome for every patient – this involves keeping scarring to a minimum. Every time the skin is cut – with either a scalpel or laser – a surgical scar results. The position of the scar, the healing process of each individual and the degree and tension placed on the scar, influence the quality and appearance of it.
  • Personal, familial and racial factors can influence types of scars and cannot be controlled by the surgeon.
  • Our surgeons make every effort to keep scars as minimal as possible. They are generally hidden in the natural lines and creases of your skin.
  • For most procedures, scars fade over time and become barely visible.
  • Keloid scars are genetic and most commonly occur in those with darker skin. They usually grow larger than the original scar, can be sensitive, itchy and red. They can occur despite the most meticulous surgery techniques, and can occasionally take up to a year to be apparent. If these scars are re-operated on, there is ~80% chance for recurrence. Often non-surgical techniques are offered for treatment, such as steroid injections which can relieve some of the symptoms of the scar i.e. the itch.
  • Hypertophic scars usually occur because of some interruption to the normal healing process i.e. infection, excessive wound tension, the wound opening up and needing to heal itself, and some burn scars. It doesn't matter what your genetic background is, and if the scar is re-done, and you have avoided the sub-optimal healing factors, they can go on to heal normally.
  • ACC will fund revisional surgery on scars if there is a functional improvement expected. Revision for purely cosmetic reasons is unlikely to be covered by ACC but we can see you for an assessment and, if appropriate, make an application on your behalf.

Overseas Patients

  • Our surgeons prefer to see patients at least one week prior to their surgery date.
  • We do not recommend long-haul i.e. international travel/flights, within two weeks of surgery.
  • Patients flying to see Mr Bialostocki or Mr Adams for surgery from outside New Zealand are at an increased risk of clots in either leg or lung, and this complication can be serious and even life threatening. Why? Because long flights and surgery are both risk factors for clots, and combined the risk multiplies. While it is possible to have surgery done during a visit to New Zealand, every caution to prevent clots will need to be taken. This includes starting on a low dose aspirin before your flight to New Zealand, wearing a very good quality calf-compression stocking, making sure you are well hydrated the entire duration of your flights and visit to New Zealand, and remaining as mobile as is practically possible. During and after surgery you will be kept very well hydrated, be required to wear sequential calf compressors and thrombo-embolism prevention stocking, and mobilise as soon as you are able. You will need to stay in the Tauranga region for approximately two weeks post-surgery, before it's safe for you to depart on another return long-haul flight. And, you will need to be prepared to stay longer if you experience unforeseen complications.
  • As part of your assessment, we may ask for you to send clear, high resolution photos of yourself to our surgeons in advance. We can advise you what angles and background to use.  We can email our pre-operative questionnaire to you to complete and scan back to us.
  • Please advise our plastic surgery nurses, when you know of your arrival date so they can arrange for you to see both surgeon and anaethetist for consultation. Our nurses can also pencil you in for a possible surgery date one week after arrival. This way secures a slot if both you and our surgeon are happy to go ahead with surgery at the time of consultation. This built-in delay between your arrival and surgery will reduce your risk of clots after the procedure, and allows us time to make get everything organised and ready to go i.e. for breast augmentation, we can procure the correct size implants chosen at time of consultation.

Medical Tourism

From Mr Bialostocki and Mr Adam's personal and specialist point of view, medical tourism overseas is not recommended. There may well be many qualified and skilled surgeons overseas, but unfortunately, we see numerous complications when patients return to New Zealand. Some complications can be treated but others i.e. poorly placed incisions, cannot. When patients with complications and unsatisfactory outcomes, following surgery overseas, have come to see our surgeons after returning, they have been charged our normal consultation and surgical fees – any cost savings wiped out. Normally, most complications resulting from any New Zealand-performed plastic surgeries are managed at minimal or no additional charge.

ACC has made it clear they will not cover overseas medical treatment for procedures carried out by surgeons not of an equivalent qualification and standard to that which is expected in New Zealand. No insurer will cover an unsatisfactory cosmetic outcome.

“I would strongly recommend you have a consultation with a New Zealand plastic surgeon before you commit to overseas procedures, so you are aware of what the state of the art techniques and outcomes are." – Mr Adam Bialostocki MBCHB (OTAGO), FRACS (Plastics)

Appearance Medicine

  • Should you require several treatments at once, we recommend making an appointment for a planning consultation. This allows us to carefully schedule your treatment time and avoid delays to either yourself or other patients. There is no charge for a consultation with either our nurse injectors, or our appearance doctor. You can also make an appointment to see our surgeons Mr Bialostocki or Mr Adams for a full assessment and discussion of your particular concerns and wishes, and all options available to you, at a standard consultation charge.
  • For first time Botox® (Botulinum Toxin A) patients we recommend a one hour appointment (for consultation and treatment).
  • For initial dermal filler consultation and treatment we set aside an hour-and-a-half. However, this may take up to three hours if you are receiving multiple treatments during the one session. Our knowledgeable staff will advise when you call for your appointment.
  • Topical anaesthetic or injected local anaesthetic (if requested) is included in the cost of your treatment.

Confidentiality

  • At Da Vinci Plastic Surgery Clinic, your privacy is respected at all times. As a condition of employment, our staff are bound by strict confidentiality requirements with regard to your medical records.
  • Your medical file will not be released without your consent, except under circumstances where it is required by law.

Is melanoma a cancer?

Yes, it is one the most serious skin cancers and New Zealand has one of the highest rates of melanoma in the world.

Plastic surgery - what is it?

  • The word ‘plastic’ is derived from a Greek word which means ‘moulding’ or ‘giving form’. Plastic surgery does not involve the use of plastics during surgery.
  • Reconstructive surgery is surgery performed to improve function and/or minimise disfigurement which has occurred as the result of an accident, disease or birth defect.
  • Aesthetic or cosmetic surgery is surgery concerned with improving a person’s appearance by reshaping facial or bodily features.
  • Minor procedures are performed at Da Vinci Plastic Surgery Clinic, 727 Cameron Road, Tauranga. More significant procedures are performed at Grace Hospital, Oropi, Tauranga.
  • Liposuction and procedures which involve elevation or muscle-tightening, can be a little uncomfortable i.e. breast augmentation or abdominoplasty. The discomfort can be compared to that experienced after a C-section.

DA VINCI & SOUTHERN CROSS

If you are insured with Southern Cross, you’ll be glad to know that Mr Adam Bialostocki and Mr Brandon Adams are affiliated providers. For patients who are insured with Southern Cross Medical Society the process couldn't be any simpler. We handle it all for you.