Interview with Gynecomastia & VASER Lipo Doctor in Singapore

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Congratulations for being the winner two years in a row for 2019 Body Sculpting Service Provider of the Year in APAC, 2020 Body Sculpting Medical Centre of the Year in APAC, and 2020 Integrated Healthcare Medical Centre of the Year in APAC! What do you think makes Amaris B. Clinic stand out from the rest of the other medical aesthetic clinics in the region?

We are thankful to receive recognition from medical industry experts and are greatly encouraged! Body Sculpting is our beginning, our roots and our forte. We have been providing medical aesthetics and body sculpting services to many for more than 15 years. We take pride in our work, results that we produced for our patients, and service excellence over the years. Each service and treatment that we launched is carefully researched and curated, with scientific backings and clinical studies. We do not offer treatments that we feel are just quacks or "in-trend" with miraculous claims or procedures that do have not enough clinical research or scientific data behind them.  

Medicine is ever-evolving. Over the years, we invested in education, upgrading and training for our team to move in time with market demand. We officially introduced Sports Medicine to complement and strengthen our existing panel of body sculpting and medical aesthetics services with our various speciality training. We believe that ultimately, Health is Beauty and Beauty is Health. Elements of beauty are very much intertwined with a healthy physical body and mental mind. We are the only medical aesthetic practice in Singapore to have these comprehensive yet very niche services. We also introduced scientifically proven exercise therapy to our patients, to assist them with effective weight loss management and health.  

We have outstanding patient service staff in our team and skilled medical professionals. We work on the belief that effective treatments demand a fully personalised approach to every single patient. We understand that not one body shape, facial anatomy, or clinical condition is the same from our years of experience. Hence, we do not believe in offering a cookie-cutter approach in our surgeries and services, which makes us different from others.

In our clinic, the focus is always about our patient's aesthetic goals, concerns and wellbeing. We believe in ensuring that our client gets the most appropriate treatment, care and an unparalleled overall experience. This belief and practice start from the moment a patient walks into the clinic.

Amaris B. Clinic also bags the 2020 Integrated Healthcare Medical Centre of the Year in APAC. What kind of integrated services does Amaris B. Clinic provide?

Our unique sports offerings include myotherapy, sports recovery, sports nutrition, varied weight management program, exercise therapy, DNA profiling and preventive medicine.

Amaris B. Clinic has an in-house myotherapist who oversees patients with myofascial issues from sports and work injuries. Myotherapy uses manual hand-on therapy to identify the trigger points to solve the root cause of the pain and immobility. Myotherapy uses massage, trigger point therapy, stretching, corrective exercises, and evidence-based assessment techniques to restore the integrity of soft tissue structures.

Our myotherapist treats a wide range of musculoskeletal conditions and pain related to the joints, muscle, and nerve caused by trauma, posture and overuse from work, sporting and recreational activities.

Many studies have shown that regular exercise has a consequential effect on our physical health and mental wellbeing. Leading an active lifestyle such as playing sports or exercising regularly reduces our risk of getting cardiovascular disease. It also increases our energy level, improves our brain health, enables better sleep quality and even aids in improving our skin health. These reasons are why we are firm believers that health is beauty, and to attain beauty and confidence, your health should come first.

Besides myotherapy, we also offer sports rehab on our exercise pod to speed up their recovery process.

Our myotherapist and I will design an exercise program that is customised to your injuries, personal abilities, body and health goals, as well as to your lifestyle and hectic schedule.

Speaking of a hectic schedule, it is essential not to neglect yourself no matter how busy you are. Obesity is a silent killer, and this modern disease can easily occur in anyone if you lead a sedentary lifestyle, or have hormonal issues. We recognise the psychological impact of this issue on many people. We believe a less than ideal physique is also due to poor circulation, and toxins build up.

These can easily be managed by improving microcirculation and improving the individual's metabolism with our three-prong approach - technology, movement through low impact exercise and nutrition science with Amaris B. Exercise Therapy. This approach kick starts the body to work smarter and supercharges the body's natural fat-burning system. It involves compression and vacuum technology and is specially designed for people who have difficulty with high-impact workouts. Coupled with health nutrition advice, this programme involves low impact exercise that will not aggravate any injury that you may be carrying, and it is also kind to the knees.

The world's ageing population is on the rise, and by 2050, there will be 2 billion people who are 60 years old and above. Two of the most chronic issues this age group will face are rheumatic diseases and circulatory diseases, rendering them disabled or bedridden. Preventive medicine is even more necessary now than ever. Amaris B. Clinic provides DNA profiling to check on their genetic traits and manage them in physical activities, recommendation and planning.

We read that you regularly go for advanced courses for body sculpting such as gynecomastia surgery, VASER Lipo and VASER Lipo Hi-Def internationally. How important is it for doctors to continuously upgrade themselves despite already being licensed by the Ministry of Health Singapore?

Medical knowledge and technologies are continually improving and evolving. As a medical professional who aims to provide the best care for patients, I have to learn about the latest development. By interacting with the best doctors internationally, I can improve myself and only then would I be able to provide the best and safest treatment for my patients.

You also hold a Graduate Diploma in Sports Medicine from Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine (LKCMedicine) from NTU. How do you think sports medicine can fit into your realm of aesthetics and body sculpting surgical treatments in the clinic?

Sports Medicine allows me to provide advice and treatment for sports injuries, weight loss, sports nutrition, sports training, recovery and others. In my opinion, wellness and fitness play a significant role in keeping us youthful, healthy and beautiful. With this knowledge, we have become more capable in providing integrated programs in aesthetics and wellness, to keep our clients beautiful, healthy and fit.

You have recently developed your own signature surgical methods for gynecomastia surgery called 360° Glandular Tissue Dissection (360°GTD®️) and MDC-Sculpt®️ lipo technique for VASER Lipo. Could you tell us more about it?

Unlike what most people imagine, treating conditions such as gynecomastia and body fat is not just about removing breast lumps or excess body fat. Treating these conditions is complex and challenging. It involves using the right technique, coupled with years of experience, understanding of human aesthetics, and understanding patients' concerns and expectations. Our proprietary approaches such as 360° Glandular Tissue Dissection (360°GTD®️) and MDC-Sculpt® lipo technique for permanent fat removal, are designed to address these complex issues, not only to remove the breast swellings or body fat but also to optimise their body physique and proportion.

What are the common misconceptions about gynecomastia and liposuction that you have heard?

The most common misconception for gynecomastia is that it is due to excess fatty tissue and hence many patients believe that it will go away if they lose weight. That is certainly not true for most. Gynecomastia is caused by enlarged breast glands from hormonal imbalance and will definitely not disappear with weight loss.

The most typical misconception for liposuction is that one can choose liposuction as a treatment for weight loss. Liposuction is very effective for targeted fat reduction, such as tummy fat, love handles, thigh fat and others, but may not contribute a lot to weight loss in the medium to long term. Conversely, it is difficult for one to do targeted fat reduction, such as hip or arms fat reduction, with weight loss alone.  

We read that you noticed a positive correlation between stress, weight gain and physical body pain, are there any physical changes brought on by stress?

Stress, especially over a prolonged period, will affect both the affected person's physical and mental health. Aesthetically, stress may affect one's skin complexion, weight and fat distribution, sense of well being and physical fitness.

"Integrity is what we do, what we say and what we say we do" is a quote by Don Galer that you hold on strongly to. Could you please let us know why integrity is something you uphold?

Integrity is of the utmost importance to my team and me. It is the promise of who we are, what we do and the values that we uphold, and only with it will our patients have trust and faith in us.

You are a strong supporter of Wat Don Chan Orphanage. You flew over to Chiang Mai to provide medical care and check-ups in Chiang Mai. What was the experience like?

I am humbled to support Wat Don Chan Orphanage, which was the biggest orphanage in Chiangmai that houses over 800 children. It has been over three years since our company started our work with them. We had carried out several projects, including renovating the orphanage, supporting the children through art therapy, providing regular medical check-ups for them when we flew over, supplying medications, and others.  

In 2020, due to Covid-19, we cannot visit them, but we have managed to coordinate with our local team in Chiangmai to send clothes, food, sanitary items and set up two medical bays to use as isolation wards. Being able to give back is what I truly cherished. I believe in giving back to the society and people who need the most help while we are still able to do so.

What are the face and body sculpting trends that you foresee in 2021?

These are the 5 face and body sculpting trends that I foresee:

01. Demand for Customised Surgical Body Sculpting Increasing market share of non-invasive fat reduction treatments

Fat and Weight gain during work from home (WFM) period. I saw more patients in 2020, seeking help to lose fat and weight. In general, these patients experienced significant lifestyle disruption due to Covid-19, which inevitably led to poor eating habits, unbalanced diet, and severe activity reduction.

This increases the demand for customised surgical body sculpting.  

With improved liposuction technology such as VASER Liposuction, doctors can remove fat more efficiently and safely. However, the result still lies in the hands of the doctor. I regard body sculpting as 30% science 70% art. This is why I have developed the MDC-Lipo Sculpt® approach for my patients, to produce thorough fat removal with targeted sculpting to her/his body shape and needs. As we see the demand for liposuction increases in this Covid-19 era, surgical body sculpting should no longer be viewed as a typical procedure. Doctors need to take a more personal approach.

02. Counter ageing: Face tweaks but more naturally

The appeal of a more natural-looking result fuels the demand for customisation. After all, no two individuals are alike, be it in the physical or structural forms. Patients' concerns can only address these with tailored treatment programs to bring out the best appearance. This demand will carry through into 2021.

03. Dermal fillers remain popular, but we may also see an increase in the usage of hyalase injection

I expect dermal fillers to still be in demand and could even potentially experience a rise. This is mainly due to advancement in product developments and their longevity. With it, however, the occurrence of less-than-desirable results or botched jobs could also increase, if trained and experienced doctors do not perform the injections. Fortunately, hyaluronidase injections are available, prescribed and performed by medical doctors to rectify the side effects such as over-filling and uneven nodules. Hyaluronidase injections could be a prominent feature in 2021.

04. Patients seeking quality care practitioners for their cosmetic /aesthetic work based on info on social media

True knowledge is not just about knowing, but it involves having an understanding. The array of information on the internet can be misleading or even relaying false hopes. In Singapore, not many know that only the Ministry of Health licensed medical clinics can conduct injectable treatments such as botulinum toxin and dermal fillers. This is important to remember and take note as people are often easily enticed when it comes to quick fixes and treatments that are packaged and presented "beautifully" yet in truth, deceiving.

05. The increasing awareness of Fitness and Nutrition

Post Circuit Breaker, we saw a surge in the number of people coming to our practice to seek help for injury issues and those who cannot lose weight efficiently by themselves. Overall well being is more than just about eating within the recommended calories count or exercising frequently. Nutrition in your diet is equally important. The body is a complex machine that requires balanced nutrition to function at the optimal cellular level. If you look up the definition, the term 'diet' actually has little to do with what we eat momentarily. Instead, it is related to the food and drinks that we regularly consume to keep our health in tip-top condition. The demand for fitness is going to go beyond just being a trend.