Wouldn’t you like to look down and see how your breasts are enhanced with your new implants before you even have surgery? Or be able to see the various changes you could make when contemplating nasal shaping surgery? For well over a year we have been using three-dimensional scanning to create computer generated mockups of possible results with plastic surgery. The scanner, made by Crisalix, takes only a couple of minutes to scan with its 3-D camera and a couple more minutes for processing. Then, voila, one can see a three-dimensional image of the original “before” and also possible postoperative “after” changes! If imaging for breast surgery, different size breast implants can be visualized. There is even a function that allows one to see how the breasts move with different activities such as walking. Scanning has been extremely helpful when there are differences in one breast size to the other. It has also been extremely helpful in visualizing possible outcomes with chin implants, rhinoplasty and other facial surgery changes. Although relatively accurate, it must be remembered that these are computer-generated images and not guarantees of results as there may be other underlying factors that come into play such as skin texture or underlying muscles. But patient satisfaction with it has been high and most find viewing 3 dimensional images very helpful. The Crisalix folks also run a helpful website where active users can learn more about three-dimensional imaging and also interact (anonymously) with other users. The scanner is available in our Newton office.

– Dr Volpe