Dr. Susan Stuart values education and training to progress and become unique in the field of aesthetics in our interview with the dermatologist.
Name: Dr. Susan Stuart
Clinic: La Jolla Dermatology
Locations: La Jolla and San Diego
What makes your practice stand out amongst the others in California?
Ours is the only practice in San Diego of a triple board certified plastic surgeon and board certified dermatologist husband/wife team. In fact, there are only a handful of such practices nationwide. It is really a one stop practice where all their aesthetic concerns can be addressed. Patients often tell us how thrilled they are that there is one practice in San Diego with such a vision. While there are other group practices of dermatologists and plastic surgeons the doctors often compete for each patient because of financial pressures. As a "family" type of practice there are no such financial pressures so we can deliver the treatments which are best suited for each patient based upon sound medical principles.
What can you tell us about your staff and methods to hiring staff?
We have a very close staff who have been with us for many years. We all strive to give all our patients the best care because our staff were carefully chosen and share our mission. We have weekly wrap around meetings where we discuss each upcoming case to make sure all issues are addressed and treatment plans are fully implemented. We have frequent staff meetings where everyone provides input into how we can improve the patient experience. Frequent retreats allow us to create team building and improve morale. We just had a wonderful retreat where the staff enjoyed an afternoon of competitive bowling in a trendy downtown alley.
What technologies do you employ in your practice?
We not only offer a full range of aesthetic dermatology and plastic surgery treatments, but we also have one of the busiest Neograft hair restoration practices in the nation voted the number one hair restoration practice in the USA. In addition, we offer non-invasive treatments like coolsculpting, which freezes the fat resulting in a permanent reduction of fat. Our coolsculpting practice is the leading non-invasive fat reduction practice in San Diego and La Jolla. In addition are practice has two certified coolsculpting specialists who have done literally thousands of treatments and are among the most experienced in the nation.
Both hair restoration surgery and coolsculpting are areas of our practice which demonstrate our commitment to embracing the newest technology which benefits our patients. We spare no expense for patient care as the practice owns two coolsculpting machines offering dual sculpting which allows two treatments areas to be treated simultaneously. We were one of the first practices in the region to introduce the newest applicators which reduced a treatment time from one hour to 35 minutes. Since our practice has a board certified plastic surgeon, we can also offer patients liposuction as an office procedure with a laser called Smart Lipo or more traditional liposuction in the operating room. This is the hallmark or signature of our practice as we can provide the entire complement of aesthetic procedures for every patient. We are the only hair restoration practice in San Diego that owns not one but two Neograft machines allowing more efficient and quicker harvesting of hair grafts in selected cases.
Which treatments are most popular in your practice?
In the final analysis, it is not about what is most profitable but what you enjoy doing and where do your individual talents reside. We all do well what we enjoy and have been adequately trained to perform. There are dermatologists in my community who perform procedures like eyelid surgery or facelift surgery that are clearly outside their scope of practice but are motivated by interests other than what is best for the patient. We are unique in that our patients will receive the best care based upon the credentials, training, and expertise of our individual specialties. If you put your patient interests first then your priorities are in order and success is a natural evolution.
What can you tell us about your career in aesthetic medicine?
In the past, I have spoken at the Hawaii Dermatology Annual Meeting, Maui; American Academy of Dermatology Annual Meeting; Society for Investigative Dermatology Annual Meeting.
Our practice is a leader in follicular unit or FUE hair restoration on the west coast. The technology offered by Neograft is minimally invasive avoiding the linear donor scar of the older techniques as well as a shorter recovery and natural results. This new hair restoration technology is to hair restoration what the laparoscope was for general and orthopedic surgery.
We are unique in that our patients have the best of both worlds: a dermatologist to help diagnose and treat medical causes of hair loss and a plastic surgeon who offers surgical solutions in appropriate cases. We offer a comprehensive array of treatments for hair loss including PRP (platelet rich plasma), special vitamin formulations, and other medical treatments to correct hair loss and improve hair transplant growth.
It's the comprehensive nature of our practice which really makes us unique. We provide the latest technology through our palette of expertise in all aspects of aesthetic medicine and surgery. It's this ability, which provides a richness of opportunity for our patients as we have quite an arsenal of optionswithin our two core specialties.
We both feel that fillers and injectables like Botox should be done by dermatologists and plastic surgeons so if a patient visits our practice they will see one of the physicians for these treatments and not a nurse or PA.
Any advice you could give to fellow physicians?
Make sure you follow your passion and dreams. Always strive to be your personal best and remember to put your patients' interests ﬁrst.
About Dr. Susan Stuart
Board-certified dermatologist Dr. Susan Stuart is loved by her patients and respected by her peers and the media, both locally and nationally. She attained this impressive reputation by combining her natural aptitudes — which include a zest for life and learning, a caring personality, and vibrant creativity — with a rigorous education by innovators in aesthetic dermatology.