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CosmeticSurg Blog

Dr. Rodriguez discusses Plastic Surgery, Medicine, and Stem Cell Research

About Dr. Ricardo L Rodriguez

I am a Plastic Surgeon with over 25 years of experience in both the academic and private practice worlds. At my AAAASF surgery center where I serve as Medical Director, (Cosmetic Surgery Facility LLC, DBA Cosmeticsurg.net), I specialize in multiple procedure makeovers.

I am Board Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, and an active member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, (ASPS). In 2016 I will serve as president of IFATS, a multidisciplinary research organization whose focus is the study of adipose tissue and adipose stem cells. For my own research activities, I was recently awarded an MSCRF grant to study invivo tracking of autologous adipose stem cells for the treatment of radiation damaged breasts. This study is registered at the ClinicalTrials.gov site.

My patients include medical professionals, actors and performers, diplomats, and people of all walks of life. I speak Spanish, French, and English, and I am happily married for 29 years with two beautiful children.

Learn more about my credentials here.

Find more about me on:

Here are my most recent posts

smile surgery illustration thumbnailA recent article in the Wall Street Journal highlighted a Korean Plastic Surgeon who is popularizing the so called Smile Surgery. MSN News also recently featured an article about smile surgery, called a “smile lipt,” – a combination of the words “lip” and “lift.” While this procedure may sound odd, there are definitely some patients who are good candidates for this procedure. I have performed it in my practice in Baltimore.

Some people have a distinct permanent frown type expression and Smile Surgery can help them because it lifts the corners of the mouth. It helps change the permanent sad or angry look to a more pleasant expression. This technique is different than a traditional lip lift procedure, as that technique focuses solely on the long space between the upper lip and the base of your nose. A Lip Lift does not address the corners of your mouth. The Smile Surgery focuses exclusively on lifting the corners of your mouth.

Since I do lip lifts and mouth rejuvenation quite often, I’d like to point out a few technical details for the procedure that addresses only the corner of your mouth and helps improve your smile.. >> Continue reading Smile Surgery to Help Permanent Frowns

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thin liposuction cannulas give best resultsTo get the smoothest result with liposuction your Plastic Surgeon needs four things:

The instrument that a Plastic Surgeon uses to remove the fat from your body is called a cannula. Cannulas come in a variety of sizes and are classified by the width of the long slender tube. After over 25 years of performing Liposuction, I have found that the cannula which works best is a small, thin, 3 millimeter diameter cannula. The small diameter cannula ensures that you don’t leave defects in the fatty tissue where fluids or blood can accumulate. Larger liposuction cannulas allow fluids to accumulate and have a higher likelihood of uneven scarring and surgery results. Uneven scarring is what causes skin contour irregularities. >> Continue reading How to Get the Smoothest Liposuction Results?

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woman with a questionA lot of surgeons now are beginning to perform Brazilian Butt Lifts. Fat grafting is highly technique dependent and some surgeons are having more success than others. Unfortunately most surgeons do not see other surgeon’s work so it is hard for them to compare results. But you can. The information you can get from these questions will help you pick the best surgeon for yourself! >> Continue reading 6 Essential Questions to Ask Before a Brazilian Butt Lift

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Any of you who have been following this blog knows of my interest in Adult Stem Cells derived from fat tissue.  Adipose Stem Cells are an abundant source of mescenchymal stem cells (MSC’s), and provide tremendous promise for many types of injury and diseases. For the past 4 years I have been on an amazing journey that has brought me in contact with brilliant scientists all over the world, taught me new skills, and opened a world of wonder in my profession of Plastic Surgery.

Yesterday, together with Jeff Bulte, PhD (Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions) and others from University of Maryland, I was awarded one of the 2013 Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund (MSCRF) Grants. Our team will investigate the location, longevity, and fate of labeled adipose stem cells once we have injected them into breast tissue damaged by radiation. >> Continue reading Dr. Rodriguez of CosmeticSurg Awarded 2013 Maryland Stem Cell Grant

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For the best results following any plastic surgery procedure it’s important to choose your board certified surgeon carefully, discuss your goals and options very specifically, and follow your surgeons post-op instructions completely.

Not wearing your compression garment after surgery might not seem like a big deal, but in fact, it is very important to your surgical result! I ask all of my patients to wear a compression garment after their liposuction and/or tummy tuck surgery. Here’s why… >> Continue reading Compression Garments for Liposuction and Tummy Tuck

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hydrogel bottle In 2007, I wrote a blog post about Hydrogel for Buttock Augmentation. In the post I detailed my reasons why I did not think it was a good idea to do a Buttock Augmentation or Butt Lift with Hydrogel. The only thing that has changed since I wrote that post is that I have seen many patients who have suffered terrible damage from Hydrogel injections! My position remains the same: Hydrogel to buttocks: Don’t do it! To recap…. >> Continue reading Hydrogel Injections to the Buttocks- Don't do it!

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The Mommy Makeover is a combination of cosmetic surgery procedures done at the same time to address the changes in the body after pregnancy. Each Mommy Makeover is customized to your concerns. However, the Mommy Makeover should address 3 main issues, which concern the breast , stomach, and upper body changes. >> Continue reading What does the Mommy Makeover do?

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Patients today are doing a lot of research about the upper Lip Lift,. One of the most frequent questions I get is if the surgery involves the muscle of the upper lip. Patients want to know if my technique involves only the skin, or if I lift the muscle in any way. My Lip Lift technique involves lifting the skin only, and I do not involve the muscle.

It seems one of the biggest proponents of technique incorporating the muscle is Dr. Randall Heyworth in California. In 2008, he and I met on a trip to China representing the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, and I enjoyed his company. But I have a different approach to the upper lip lift and I will explain why. >> Continue reading Lip Lift Technique: Lifting Skin Only vs Muscle

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Recovery after a Tummy Tuck has to balance two things: the need to get your body going as quickly as possible versus the need to keep things quiet until your body has a chance to heal well.

In the past, patients were told to stay very still for a long time, but that created complications such as blog clots in the legs and problems with the lungs. Nowadays patients are encouraged to get moving much sooner, but that can have its own set of problems such as wound separations and infections.

Like most things in life, the answer is somewhere in the middle. Here is how we advise our own patients who have surgery in our Baltimore surgery center, and we hope you find it helpful. >> Continue reading How long is the Tummy Tuck Recovery?

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Fat removal LiposuctionVery often a patient will ask me ” How much fat do you take out during Liposuction?”. The answer is dependent on two things:

1. liposuction area
2. patient height and weight

Therefore, to answer the question, I will give my answers for a body frame type that I see most frequently. We’ll use as an example a woman of average height (5’3”-5’6”) who weighs about 150 pounds. >> Continue reading How much fat is taken out during Liposuction?

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Lumpectomy ScarFat Grafts have a naturally occurring small population of Adipose Stem Cells, and we are currently using them to help heal scars. Adipose tissue can be extracted from unwanted areas of your body, processed to remove the mature and dead cells, and then reinjected as a fat graft. The Adipose Stem Cells in a fat graft help to heal the scar in several ways.

First, the stem cells have anti-inflammatory properties that prevent excessive scarring. Second, they help replenish normal cells in the tissue by differentiation or directing other cells in the tissue to multiply. Since the normal population of cells under the skin is fat tissue anyways, the fat graft itself provides most of the tissue that is needed. >> Continue reading Can Adipose Stem Cells Heal Scars?

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Preop breast inframammary foldWhile the decision to augment your breast is usually an easy one, the decision to have a Breast Lift with Implants is not always so obvious.

To help you better think this through, I have come up with some questions that you should think about. These questions should help you decide IF you need a lift with your Breast Augmentation. >> Continue reading Should I have my Breast Augmentation with or without a Lift?

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side view after brazilian butt liftI get this question asked often, “How do I get a lift in the Brazilian Butt Lift?”. The patient will then push her own buttock up to help me understand what she wants. They ask me, “Can you do it?” I have answered this so often, it is time to write about it here on our blog.

How do I get a lift in the Brazilian Butt Lift?

The Brazilian Butt Lift is a type of Butt Augmentation performed with your own Fat injections. As a matter of fact, in this procedure the butt is physically lifted very little, if at all. But after a Brazilian Butt Lift, the buttock definitely looks perky, and definitely looks lifted! Let me explain… >> Continue reading How Do You Get a Lift in a Brazilian Butt Lift?

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Many patients are afraid of the tummy tuck procedure because they have seen friends’ scars or pictures of scars on the Internet and they think such scars are unavoidable. Still others, including Hispanic, Orientals, or African Americans think they are bound to get thick scars simply based on their racial background. This is just not so. Thick or unsightly scars following abdominoplasty can be easily avoided. >> Continue reading Avoiding Thick Tummy Tuck Scars

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Most breast augmentation patients are very focused on breast implant size. While that is important, it is only one of the 8 decisions you need to make before having a breast augmentation procedure. I think that the choice of implant incision location is a very important decision that you should discuss with your plastic surgeon in your pre-operative appointment.

In my own Baltimore practice, I always discuss the choice of incision location with patients before the procedure. The incision location is where the breast implant is inserted. Therefore, it is the location where you will have a small scar. In most cases, the scar is barely noticeable, but in any event you should KNOW where your implants will be inserted. >> Continue reading Breast Augmentation: Where do Breast Implants get Inserted?

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