The Dominican Medical Association

I was honored to be asked to give a lecture to the Dominican Medical Association on November 30, 2012. The group consists of physicians from the Dominican Republic who are living in the US. Some have obtained their licenses here and work as doctors, others are studying to pass the exams, and others work in different capacities.

What I was impressed with was the dedication of this group of health care professionals to the Dominican Community. They hold events and screenings to promote good health and nutrition, as well as educating the community on the importance of blood pressure management, diabetes, and cancer screenings.

For the great majority of members, they will never practice medicine here in the US, but they choose to stay for the betterment of their families and the opportunities available here. They continue to love their country of birth, and many support family over there as well.

Being a doctor is about a desire to help people. Licensed or not, the members of the DMA are doctors, and all of their “patients” here in the Dominican community are grateful for their care.

Diabetes and Plastic Surgery

With November being Diabetes Awareness Month, we felt it would be a good opportunity to talk about the many patients living with diabetes who are considering cosmetic plastic surgery. Diabetes is indeed a serious disease, but it does not necessarily prevent you from improving your appearance.

The first think we do at Yager Esthetics is to take a full history on each patient. The information you give helps me determine your options. Diabetics have a higher risk of certain complications such as infections and delayed wound healing due to the circulatory and glucose problems. What we do know is that taking your medicines and controlling your blood sugar carefully decreases these and other risks.

Assuming you are otherwise a good candidate for plastic surgery, and that your health is not otherwise an issue, we make sure that what you are expecting is realistic and that your motivations are well intentioned. The person who then determines your suitability for surgery is your primary care physician.

I send a letter to your doctor that explains the type of anesthesia and time of the procedure, and he/she let me know if they feel that you are at any increased risk of problems with the proposed surgery. If your testing is normal, and your doctor says it is ok, then you can have cosmetic plastic surgery.

The one thing you should never do is to lie to your plastic surgeon or primary care doctor. It is your health and safety at risk, and no cosmetic procedure is worth it. If you are motivated and honest, we will help you achieve your cosmetic goals safely.


Like many of my patients, Hurricane Sandy knocked the power to my home for a solid week. It was surprising that it only took a week, given the devastation and the wide spread damage. I am thankful to the workers from Georgia Power and Light who drove up to help out in our area. I still do not have television, internet, or phone service, and my children did miss a full week of school.

For the first time in my over 15 years in private practice plastic surgery at Yager Esthetics, I had to cancel a day of surgery. The office had power, and was safe, but my employees and patients would have had an impossible time commuting. We moved the Tuesday cases to Thursday, and everything went off without a hitch.

It is amazing what we all take for granted each day- light, heat, gas, telephones, computers, and television. It seems that these are basic rights. This experience has sure made me think about how truly blessed we are to live in The United States. We can complain to our government, and they actually care and try to help most of the time.

So instead of feeling sorry for ourselves as we pick up the pieces, think of how truly fortunate we are to have all of the support and assistance of friends and families at this time. We will all come back to normal soon.

Hurricane Preparations and Plastic Surgery

We have just felt the effects of Hurricane Sandy here in New York, and the after effects have been difficult to deal with. In the over 15 years of my private practice in Plastic Surgery, this was the first time I have had to cancel a day of surgery for any reason. Neither sickness, snow, or any other storm has prevented me from performing my procedures on their scheduled date- until now.

Despite losing power in my own home, and having to remove trees blocking my road, I was ready to go the morning of Tuesday, October 30th. I had prepared by moving any temperature sensitive medications to my home where we have a generator, made sure the back up power service was serviced and in 100% shape for the upcoming storm in the office, and took home all telephone numbers of patients for the week. Supplies and sterilizations were all completed on the Saturday before in case Monday was a problem.

I did not count on losing mass transit, and having patients being unable to get to my office. No subways, minimal buses means no surgery. Taxis and driving are not reliable after a storm, and for safety’s sake, we moved all patients to Thursday. With hospitals being taxed by the storm, and public services stretched thin, in the end what we do is elective, and the safest thing to do was to reschedule.

I hope that all of you are safe, and did well through the storm. Our office at Yager Esthetics is open and operational, and we look forward to seeing you soon.