Bravo! An interview with Houston Cosmetic and Reconstructive Plastic Surgeon Dr. Franklin A. Rose, MD
Franklin A. Rose, MD, pictured here with wife Cindi Harwood Rose, is a Board Certified Houston Plastic Surgeon who utilizes his love for the arts to define the beauty that he creates through his cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgery procedures. Dr. Franklin Rose shares stories of patients who inspire him, the overwhelming pride he has in his family, and insights on looking and feeling incredible.
To those who know you, it is no secret that you love the opera, and you have underwritten several lavish operas at the Houston Grand Opera. Do you feel that your love for art, beauty, and music compliment your love for plastic surgery?
Plastic surgery is truly an art form, whether you are performing reconstructive surgery or cosmetic plastic surgery. During this type of operation, the plastic surgeon is trying to reestablish form and in many cases, the function of a portion of the body. I think that if the plastic surgeon is artistically and aesthetically inclined, this field of medicine is perfect. It is crucial for a plastic surgeon to have an aesthetic sense, it is imperative that he also works with the technical surgical skills that make the aesthetic change a total success.
In addition, other influences in my life keep me in an artistic realm. Cindi is a nationally acclaimed silhouette artist as well as working with in bronzes and oil paintings. I guess you could say that I have always been attracted to art and the creative minds and temperaments behind its beauty.
Those with modeling and acting careers in the entertainment industry seem to be drawn to your practice. Is there is a secret to enhancing features to create a natural, but model-like appearance?
It is true that I have operated on my share of actresses, models, reality TV stars and those at the forefront of recognizable positions in society. I delight when I see some of my patients on the covers of fashion magazines like Vogue. The same is true of the patients that I see on television. I have also recently operated on a well-known radio personality. With these patients in mind, I honestly cannot say that a patient with a career that requires a high profile in the public eye doesn’t have any demand that is different from any other patient. Each patient that undergoes plastic surgery is seeking the same result, which is an improvement that has a natural look. As a plastic surgeon, I strive to achieve a natural-looking enhancement but one that is close to flawless and beautiful.
The industry of aesthetic plastic surgery seems to progress with new procedures, techniques, and materials. How does a plastic surgeon with a busy practice determine which new development to implement in their practice?
There are new procedures and techniques developed every year. However, some are good and some turn out to be not so good. Unless a technique has been proven, I do not like to run the risk of using a new development in the care of a patient. A new development or technique should be tested for a year or two with consistent, successful results before I choose to implement it in my practice. An example of this would be, for instance, a new injectable for lip augmentation.
Your plastic surgery practice consists of both reconstructive surgery and cosmetic plastic surgery. Which of these two areas most excites you and why?
I certainly relish maintaining a presence in the reconstructive field of plastic surgery. The beauty of reconstructive surgery is that we are taking an abnormal part of the body and restoring it to normalcy. In some cases, this is very challenging. I recently was asked to rebuild an entire lower lip of a Texas rancher who had lost his lip to skin cancer. This surgery required many types of surgical skills and techniques and I am happy to say that the end surgical result was splendid. This type of surgery offers a different type of gratification from one where the patient is already beautiful, yet the end surgical result makes them even more beautiful. However that too is extremely rewarding.
Total body contouring, Mommy Makeovers, as well as facial rejuvenation procedures seem to be keeping the baby boomers looking youthful. Do you find that more patients are turning to plastic surgery to prolong the appearance of their youth?
The statistics of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, which is a group of Board Certified Plastic Surgeons reports that plastic surgery patients are growing robustly in number. This is truly a circumstance that is supported by the growing number of adults who are becoming health and body-conscious and are focused on diet, exercise, and a youthful appearance. Because they are taking such good care of their health, these individuals often feel like they should be maintaining an equally balanced external appearance. Many of the body contouring procedures that I perform not only enhance a patient’s body image and self-esteem, but also good for the patients overall well being. This is especially true for patients who are able to lose a large volume of body fat. Evidence has been established that procedures such as these also lower the patient’s total body fat, lower cholesterol, can prevent diabetes, and maintain a healthy blood pressure. These physiological benefits are wonderful as they affect all of the body’s systems.
If you were to narrow the success stories of how a cosmetic plastic surgery procedure positively impacted a person’s life, what story would you tell?
One case that occurred early in my career comes to mind. In this case the patient was truly unattractive. Her nose was large and long. Her chin was extremely recessive. Her neckline was difficult to define as it went straight down from her chin to her collarbone. Through a sequence of nose, chin, and neck procedures, I watched the patient evolve from an “Ugly Duckling” into a “Swan.” Following her surgeries she moved to Manhattan and got married. She has kept me informed of the sequence of changes that have truly transformed her life I am grateful to have played a part in this. This was a case that I performed one to two years into my own practice, but it has made such an impact on me that I realize that each patient’s trust is a privilege as the surgery can truly change their life.
Do you find that there is an increase in patients taking an active role in seeking corrections for physical features that they are self-conscious about?
With the marked increase in procedures there has also been an increase in patient education. The internet has become a bit of a double-edged sword, as some for the information that a potential patient receives can be useful, but some information is misleading. In certain cases, the information can certainly frighten patients who are seeking plastic surgery. My practice has invested a substantial amount of effort and equity in my own site, www.PlasticSurgeryRose.com. In any case, the majority of patients seem to arrive for their initial consultations more informed than in the past.
If there was one piece of advice that you could offer someone who is making a decision to make an aesthetic change in his or her appearance, what would your advice be?
The first piece of advice that I would offer is to choose your plastic surgeon carefully. There are many well-trained and skilled plastic surgeons in Houston; however, there are also those with surgeries that have results that are sub-optimal. And confidentially, in cases where patients use “bargain-basement shopping” techniques to choose a surgeon, these patients often find that they are ultimately unhappy with their surgical results. Unfortunately, approximately one of four patients that I see are the patients of sub-optimal surgery performed elsewhere. These are often very difficult cases to surgically correct.
A good way to determine whether or not a particular plastic surgeon is one that you would be happy with is to ask about a plastic surgeon that has performed a surgical procedure for one or more of your friends. This type of conversation will help you determine whether or not the plastic surgeon can obtain a good result for you and whether or not you will be happy with his or her care.
In my opinion, there are also certain credentials that are quite important. These are privileges at an accredited Hospital, Board Certification, and Society memberships.
You are actively involved in the community of Houston. Though your contributions are great, which one are you particularly proud of?
I feel that my greatest contribution to life is my children. They are such a joy to me and I love being an intricate part of their lives.