Archive for July, 2011:

Patients May Prefer a “Less Is More” Approach to Fat Transfer Procedures

Many plastic surgeons take a minimalist, “less is more” approach to their work when performing fat transfer procedures and the like on patients who want to appear younger.

Houston plastic surgeon Dr. Neal Reisman wrote in Culture Map that when it comes to plastic surgery, the “goal is not to appear different than we did when we were younger, but look as we did at an earlier time.” What causes these changes to the face is the loss of volume experienced over time and as an effect of sun exposure.

To remedy this looseness in the skin that results in lines and wrinkles, Dr. Reisman often recommends fat transfer procedures. By using the patient’s own excess tissue from a donor site (like the abdomen or thighs), your plastic surgeon is able to restore lost facial volume.

As an added plus to this fat transfer procedure, “stem cells and other nutrient cells combined with such transfers actually improve the circulation to local tissue.” While this will not replace a good skin care routine, it may help your skin maintain its healthy appearance for a longer period of time.

But what of those patients who lack sufficient fatty stores to undergo fat transfer procedures? Long-lasting facial fillers like Juvederm are FDA-approved and can restore lost volume and vibrancy to the face. Dr. Reisman urges patients to be aware that while these treatments can have long-lasting effects, they are not permanent. Any filler that is not FDA-approved should be avoided to ensure your safety and an aesthetically-pleasing result.

For patients whose skin laxity is too poor to be corrected by a non-surgical treatments like an injection, the “less is more” rule still applies. For sagging jowls or the like, a full facelift may not always be necessary to achieve the desired result, Dr. Reisman says. A smaller operation, like a targeted “mini-lift” can leave the patient with beautiful results for seven to 10 years. These types of procedures can be completed with minimal anesthesia and recovery times.

We encourage you to contact us to learn more about diminishing the effects of aging with a cosmetic surgery or non-surgical treatment that focuses on your individual needs and aesthetic goals.

Archive for July, 2011:

Patients May Prefer a “Less Is More” Approach to Fat Transfer Procedures

This news segment from WCCO features Coolsculpting by Zeltiq, the new fat freezing procedure. “There’s a non-invasive way to get rid of love handles, a muffin top and back fat,” they say.

An interview with Dr. Brian Zelickson helps viewers understand the benefits of Zeltiq Coolsculpting treatment and the best candidates for it.

“Basically as we cool the to at a certain temperature, for a certain time, that causes the fat cells to disappear,” explains Dr. Zelickson.

A recent article on modernmedicine.com features an interview with another experienced Zeltiq physician. Kimberly Butterwick, dermatologist, explains that Zeltiq can reduce fat by 20 to 25 percent in a targeted area. She also explains how simple and easy Coolsculpting can be: “The patient just sits there for an hour with it clamped on an area of fat.”

Archive for July, 2011:

Patients May Prefer a “Less Is More” Approach to Fat Transfer Procedures

Fat transfer, traditionally for the face, is gaining traction for augmenting breasts as a new technique is developed, according to a recent study in the journal Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

The procedure, which builds upon previous successes and innovations in fat transfer for breast augmentation, involves several weeks of pre-expansion treatment with a bra-like device that uses gentle vacuum pressure to stretch the breast tissue. This allows for more room when the surgeon grafts the fat, which is extracted from another part of the body, such as the thigh.

Fat grafting has a number of advantages, since it doesn’t use a foreign implant but the patient’s own tissue. But one of the greatest disadvantages of the procedure has been that it cannot typically enhance a patient’s breast more than one cup size. This has limited its use among women who desire larger results.

“Pre-expansion to the breast allows for mega-volume (over 300 cc) grafting with reproducible, long lasting results that can be achieved in less than two hours,” according to study authors Drs. Daniel Alexander Del Vecchio and Louis Paul Bucky.

The study examined the results of pre-expansion and autologous fat transfers in 46 breasts of 25 women. While some were having first-time procedures to augment their breast size, others were having implants replaced or having breast deformities corrected. The average amount of fat transplanted was 300cc.

The patients had their procedures evaluated after six months, and the doctors found:

  • significant improvements in size
  • soft and natural appearance
  • no cysts or other abnormalities under MRI

The surgeons found that with some practice they could perform the breast fat transfer procedure within less than two hours. None of the patients experienced any significant complications.

While the long-term implications and possible safety issues associated with the pre-expansion and fat transfer technique have yet to be researched, Del Vecchio and Bucky’s contribution to the field of fat transplantation offers new hope to women who want full, natural breast enhancement.

Read more on plasticsurgery.org

Archive for July, 2011:

Patients May Prefer a “Less Is More” Approach to Fat Transfer Procedures

Many people, including politicians, are saying the regulations placed on Botox and other injectables should be overhauled and strengthened.

Botox is already a controlled substance, but in practice this means that only someone with a medical license can order the product. There are very few limitations on who can administer the shots, and while the injections are not particularly dangerous except in rare instances, a poorly placed injection can cause undesirable side effects.

Botox has made waves across the country and around the world. In China, it is frequently and openly administered by beauty parlors with no training or qualifications, which has led to widespread calls for stricter controls. Last year, the UK considered implementing tighter regulation on Botox, but this was ultimately dismissed for being too expensive to enforce.

Stateside, Botox regulation has become a hot topic in Texas and New Jersey, as politicians, doctors, and concerned citizens worry that the lack of controls is endangering many patients. The Texas Medical Board has considered making changes to the rules about who can perform cosmetic procedures involving prescription medications. This would include injectable fillers.

In New Jersey, legislators have introduced a bill that would ban Botox for minors, except in cases where a doctor affirms that the treatment is medically necessary. Before it became a popular cosmetic procedure, Botox was (and continues to be) used for a variety of medical purposes, including the treatment of certain migraines and cerebral palsy symptoms.

Botox regulation is supported by many people who fear that unscrupulous providers are capitalizing on the treatment’s rising popularity without taking into account the safety and ethical issues involved. You should always make sure that your Botox is being administered by an accredited professional with years of experience. Only these providers are qualified to target specific facial muscles and deliver predictable results with consistency.

Archive for July, 2011:

Patients May Prefer a “Less Is More” Approach to Fat Transfer Procedures

For patients who have lost both breast volume and experience a breast droop, combination breast lift and augmentation procedures can restore what has been lost.

Changes to the breasts can be caused by a variety of factors, including pregnancy, breastfeeding, menopause, and weight changes. Some women with smaller breasts may experience ptosis (sagging breasts) and want to get the entire package when they consult their surgeon. Larger or medium-sized breasts can dwindle over time, and this is often accompanied by a drooping of the nipples.

There are many obvious benefits to a procedure that could offer women the chance to combine their breast augmentation and mastopexy during a single surgery:

  • final results in a single session
  • less time spent in the operating room and hospital
  • no need to operate on scarred tissues

But is this sort of procedure safe? Some physicians have argued that combining breast augmentation and mastopexy creates added risks, such as scarring, death of breast tissue, and poor positioning of the implants. Surgeons have argued that the operation is complicated and unnecessarily risky.

However, in a recent study published in Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, Dr. Ariel Tessone and her colleagues were able to employ a safe, simple mastopexy-augmentation technique that involves resectioning the breast after the implant has been inserted. The study examines 60 patients who underwent this procedure. It reports a high satisfaction rate and a low (10 percent) reoperation rate.

While there are various considerations outlined in the study that would limit the use of this procedure, it seems that augmentation-mastopexy surgery may be a viable option for patients who want to correct both breast sagging and loss of breast volume.

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