President, The Long Island Plastic Surgical Group
Dr. Tommaso Addona is President of Long Island Plastic Surgical Group (LIPSG) as well as the Chief of Plastic Surgery at St. Joseph Hospital in Bethpage, NY. He is a board-certified plastic surgeon and has been a partner at LIPSG since 2011. Dr. Addona graduated Summa Cum Laude from Binghamton University and obtained his medical degree with Honors in Plastic Surgery Research from Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Dr. Addona completed his residency in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at The Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York, followed by advanced training in Microvascular and Reconstructive Surgery at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City.
Dr. Addona performs a wide range of facial cosmetic surgery, including facelifts and eyelid surgery. He also has expertise with breast and body cosmetic surgery, including mommy makeovers, breast reduction, breast augmentation, and tummy tucks. Dr. Addona’s specialty is breast reconstruction after cancer utilizing highly specialized microvascular techniques. Dr. Addona has been an active participant in the annual Breast Cancer Summit on Long Island and has published numerous articles and book chapters on diverse topics in plastic and reconstructive surgery.
Dr. Addona is also actively involved in medical volunteerism and in 2018, was appointed to the Board of Directors of ReSurge International. The mission of this organization is to provide reconstructive surgical care and build surgical capacity in developing countries. During his residency, Dr. Addona traveled abroad on medical missions with the non-profit organization Healing the Children.
How did you get into the field of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery?
Growing up in an Italian immigrant household, it was impressed upon me to work hard and succeed. No one else in my family was a doctor, but the profession intrigued me. I always believed that being a doctor was one of the best jobs out there; to provide good in the world, serve a purpose, and to help people. I knew I wanted to go to medical school early on.
Surgery was a field that my personality, demeanor and work ethic jibed with. I had exposure to cardiothoracic surgery when I was in college at Binghamton University and went on to explore surgical oncology in medical school at Albert Einstein.
What do you most wish that people knew about your industry?
It would be great if people fully understood the scope of plastic surgery. It ranges from the well-advertised cosmetic procedures, to not as well-known reconstructive surgeries. Both provide value and enhance the quality of a person’s life.
Are there any emerging trends or advances you’re seeing in the industry that excite you?
Plastic surgery extends beyond surgery. There has been tremendous growth in the minimally invasive sector of cosmetic plastic surgery. So many new and exciting treatments are available. Many are affordable and have little to no downtime. From injectables, lasers, non-invasive fat reduction with Coolsculpting or Kybella, to cellulite treatments such as Cellfina, there’s so much available to us to procure excellent aesthetic outcomes. Less invasive procedures can still provide that wow factor, and results can range from subtle to drastic.
You’ve recently been appointed President of your practice. Are there any areas of the business that you’d like to see grow, or any key initiatives you plan to roll out?
The medical spa is a big area of focus for our group. We’ve seen significant growth in our Deep Blue Med Spas in recent years and it’s made us aware of how we can serve patients to a greater degree. We’d like to eventually see expansion into more locations.
We are also looking to grow on the practice side as well. In the last 10 years, the number of plastic surgeons in the group has almost doubled, and there will be 2 new providers joining Long Island Plastic Surgical Group by the end of the year. We want to increase our presence in and around the New York Metropolitan area, including Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan.
What is the ideal experience for a patient who comes to LIPSG?
One of the things our practice has done well is provide a gold standard of care for patients. The experience is the equivalent of what you would see at the highest rated institutes – but with a boutique feel. Most LIPSG physicians are fellowship-trained and all are extremely accomplished. We’ve been able to bring that high-quality experience into a boutique setting.
The full scope of what we offer ranges from treating babies with cleft lip and palate toreconstructing a woman’s breasts after cancer. These relationships continue for many years while the patient is under our care. Here, our patients are not just a number, they have one-on-one contact with the staff and doctor and we are there for them every step of the way.
When it comes to our cosmetic patients, I love that we can customize a plan tailored to their specific needs. Because we offer so many options to choose from – from surgery to injectables to various non-invasive procedures and medical grade skin care products — we are able to fine-tune a plan to accomplish that individual’s aesthetic goals.
The combined knowledge of our surgeons and providers and the expertise in different plastic surgical specialties make LIPSG a unique institution, one that is there for patients throughout every stage of their life.
How do you motivate yourself, and how do you motivate others?
I believe in leading by example. I have an uncle who has always said that when you have a business; you should be able to do everything from top to bottom. Many of our doctors are comfortable running the whole gamut of what needs to be done in patient care, that could mean getting a patient set up in an exam room or making personal calls to check in on patients post-procedure.
Working together always makes the effort stronger; we typically approach all business and patient experiences with a team approach and understand and appreciate the input and assistance needed from all parties.
What career advice would you offer to those in your industry or those who want to enter the industry?
Pick an area of plastic surgery that you’re passionate about. Think about the patient population that you want to care for. Pay attention to what brings you the most satisfaction. Listen to yourself, and you’ll never regret it.
What has been your biggest success to date?
This can be a personal success or professional success.
My biggest success to date has been my family. Having a very loving, caring family makes working and taking care of patients that much more enjoyable. I am truly happy and fulfilled.
What has been the most challenging moment so far in your personal or professional life? How did that moment impact you?
The most challenging moments that come to mind are when I was younger and applying to colleges and medical schools. It was tough for me to not always get my first choice. These are defining moments for me that furthered my drive, forced me to grow by committing myself, and working hard to get to the next level and where I wanted to be.
Do you have a motto, mantra or saying that you believe in strongly, or by which you live your life?
I’m going to borrow from Nike here and say, “Just do it.” You can accomplish anything if you put your mind to it and work hard. Focus on the task, project, or goal, and give it your all. When you put in the work, you get the results. This rings true to me with patients and the surgical experience, with relationships in my personal life, and with areas of interest such as fitness. You determine your destiny, set your goal and work towards it.