Cosmetic Surgery Today

Plastic Surgery News, Costs of Cosmetic Surgery and Elective Procedures Blog

Archive for June, 2009

Alternative Health Journal Announces Top Anti-Aging Foods

Posted by Cosmetic Surgery Review on June 30, 2009

CB101828‘You are what you eat’ is a popular mantra of the modern age, and many people do report several benefits when they are eating a healthy, wholesome diet. The Alternative Health Journal, an online publication that provides information on natural health and wellness options, recently listed several foods that may have anti-aging benefits.

Fish tops the list, and researchers have found that fatty fish that contains Omega-3s is a valuable source of healthy fats and protein. Salmon and tuna may be some of the best sources for these healthy fats and proteins, and can be easily integrated into the diet on a weekly basis.

Red wine also makes it to the anti-aging foods and drinks list, because it contains a high concentration of antioxidants and may have the added benefit of lowering blood pressure. Experts recommend a glass of red wine with dinner just once or twice per week to enjoy its full benefits.

Dark, leafy vegetables are high on the anti-aging foods list because these also contain a significant amount of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Vegetables such as spinach, kale, and various types of dark green lettuce may be a valuable addition to your anti-aging platter.

Finally, nuts have been deemed a necessary addition to the anti-aging menu. Walnuts, almonds, cashews and other types of nuts contain healthy fats and are a rich source of protein. Nuts not only help to curb hunger, but can also make you feel more satisfied with eating smaller meals throughout the day. Nuts can be eaten as a snack, or sprinkled on salads and other foods for easy integration into the daily or weekly menu.

Eating a variety of anti-aging foods offers several heart and skin benefits, and may help to reduce the effects of cell damage associated with the aging process. Overall, a well-balanced diet that includes these foods may be the key to looking and feeling young for the long-term.

(Source: AlternativeHealthJournal.com)

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Sonya Dakar Launches Innovative Anti Aging Skincare Line

Posted by Cosmetic Surgery Review on June 29, 2009

sonya-dakarThere are now hundreds of anti-aging skincare products on the market, and the multi-billion dollar industry continues to grow at a rapid pace as more people join the quest for the fountain of youth.

Major brands in the industry continue to create innovate facial products such as serums, creams and vitamin-infused gels that promise to reduce wrinkles and improve the texture of the skin. Sonya Dakur is one of them, a high-end skincare and makeup company that now boasts a complete anti-aging product line.

Sonya Dakar has introduced the UltraLuxe anti-aging collection that features spot-lightening treatments, moisture-infusing products and serums that promise to ward off the signs of aging. Most recently, MINDYS Cosmetics, the maker of Sonya Dakar Skin Care, has added a hand spot lightening and firming with SPF 30, and a neck and décolleté firming and spot lightening cream with SPF 30 to reduce the appearance of sun spots, and make the skin appear firmer and stronger.

Both of these products, and several other products in the UltraLuxe anti-aging skincare line, are designed to plump up the skin and lighten the complexion to create a natural, more youthful glow. Sonya Dakur products are infused with a combination of antioxidants and natural extracts that sink deep into the skin and help promote a healthier complexion.

These anti-aging treatments are supported by several research studies, and participants in the studies report a “dramatic decrease in the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.” However, they may not be as effective as some of today’s cosmetic wrinkle treatments. Some of the active ingredients that may play an important role in achieving results include SYN-AKE synthetic snake venom, grape seed extract, and organic pomegranate that is rich in antioxidants.

Other innovative anti aging products in the Sonya Dakar lineup include the Retinol Renewal Serum, Oxygen Eye Cream, Youth! Serum, and Hydrasoft Cream. Most products in the anti-aging line are priced between $69 and $155 per bottle.

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AMA Questions Value of Hormone Therapy as Anti-Aging Solution

Posted by Cosmetic Surgery Review on June 28, 2009

CB107593Hormone therapy as an anti-aging solution has entered the mainstream market in the past decade, and treatment options are readily available at medical spas and wellness clinics across America. As part of their quest for the fountain of youth, many people are turning to hormone replacement treatments and bio-identical hormone therapy that promises to slow down the aging process and improve health overall.

However, the American Medical Association has started to take a closer look at this $50 billion industry, and is now suggesting that many claims made by anti-aging ‘clinics’ and centers that promote hormone replacement as an anti-aging treatment option are not supported by sufficient evidence.

The AMA’s 543-member House of Delegates, along with the AMA Council on Science and Public Health, recently convened in Chicago in early June to discuss the issues around anti-aging treatment options. There is currently no formal policy or statement made by the AMA regarding anti-aging therapy, and some physicians even warned that there may be several dangers involved with using hormone replacement therapy as an anti-aging treatment.

Anti-aging treatment specialists contend that they do not, and cannot, promise to stop the clock or reverse the aging process, but that hormone replacement treatments can help to improve and maintain optimal health.

In some cases, the treatment options fall under the category of medication, which means that there need be substantive trials and research behind all of the claims.

For now at least, anti-aging treatment centers and medical spas touting the benefits of hormone replacement therapy have the freedom to prescribe and promote almost any type of treatment they wish. However, it is up to the consumer to consider the potential benefits and drawbacks of their treatment plan, and understand that these treatments are not currently approved by or formally supported by the American Medical Association.

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Botox May Help Treat Overactive Bladder

Posted by Cosmetic Surgery Review on June 27, 2009

j0182793Botox is now one of the most sought-after cosmetic procedures in the United States, and offers several benefits for those who want to get rid of wrinkles and improve their looks without surgery. However, Botox has also been used for many medicinal purposes over the past few decades. Botulinum toxin has been used to treat excessive underarm sweating and also to reduce migraine. A recent study now suggests that Botox can be used to treat an overactive bladder.

Researchers in Great Britain have found that Botox injections improved the symptoms of 34 patients with overactive bladders, and also improved their quality of life for up to six months. Results of the study were published in the BJU International Journal, and research was conducted at King’s College in London.

Patients received a series of 20 injections through the bladder wall to help immobilize various bladder muscles. Botox works by paralyzing the muscle it is injected into, and in cases of an overactive bladder, can help to reduce muscle spasms that trigger common symptoms. By combining Botox injections with natural treatments such as bladder training and pelvic floor exercises, some patients may be able to enjoy a better lifestyle and decrease anxiety and stress related to their condition.

In the United States, Botox is available for off-market use so researchers may go forth with testing Botox for overactive bladder problems.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Botox only for cosmetic use in the United States, but many physicians do administer Botox to treat other conditions, and are licensed to do so.  However, there is no guarantee that this is 100 percent safe, as short term and long-term side effects of Botox for uses outside of cosmetic procedures have not been documented or studied extensively.

(Source: Reuters)

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Plastic Surgeon Says 3D Morphing Software Not Helpful Before Surgery

Posted by Cosmetic Surgery Review on June 26, 2009

Many plastic and cosmetic surgeons now offer 3D computer imaging services where a patient can see their ‘before and after’ pictures before going under the knife. Today’s innovative software programs can capture the patient’s silhouette and measurements, and create a realistic-looking ‘after’ photo based on the type of surgery they wish to undertake. However, some plastic surgeons believe that 3D morphing software really is not effective.

According to Los Angeles plastic surgeon Steven Teitelbaum, MD, “Patients frequently have anxiety about implant sizing. Will they look too big, too small, or just right? Portrait 3D [visualization software and equipment] answers these questions by simulating an approximate result on the patient’s own body. This eliminates a major obstacle for the many patients who can’t decide whether or not to schedule surgery.” (Source: RealSelf.com)

In some cases, the 3D modeling software simply sets unrealistic expectations for the procedure. Many doctors spend time explaining what can be expected from the surgery during the consultation with the patient, but also emphasize that there are no guarantees. When patients bring in pictures of celebrities or other people they want to look like, it’s up to the doctor to explain what can realistically be achieved with liposuction, breast implants and other surgeries based on the patient’s natural genetic makeup and features.

3D morphing software does help the surgeon perform a ‘digital nip tuck’ so the patient can see their new size and silhouette, but again, there is no guarantee that the surgeon will be able to achieve the same results. The healing process is different for everyone, and in some cases, the patient will need to undergo additional surgery or procedures such a skin tightening treatments in order to achieve their ‘ideal’ figure.

Digital images can only provide an estimate on what the outcome will be. It is still up to the doctor to educate the patient about potential results, and build trust with the patient so that the patient understands results may be slightly different than the 3D model.

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Experts Discuss Effects of Plastic Surgery on a Teen’s Self-Esteem

Posted by Cosmetic Surgery Review on June 25, 2009

j0439569Undergoing plastic surgery for cosmetic reasons has become the quick-fix solution for improving one’s looks, increasing self-confidence and even improving self-esteem. However, some experts believe that this quest for beauty is taking its toll on the teenage girl population in the United States, and may be putting the ‘pressure to be perfect’ on these girls at a very young age.

Dove recently conducted a study involving 1,000 girls living in the United States as part of Dove’s Campaign for Real Beauty in partnership with the Girl Scouts of America. According to the results of the “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem”, more than 70 percent of girls between the ages of 8 and 17 believed that they “do not measure up in some way, including their looks, performance in school and relationships with friends and family members.”

Some teens turn to their parents to help them pay for a cosmetic procedure so that they can feel better about themselves. However, many plastic surgeons don’t feel that this is an effective way to bolster self-esteem. Dr. Yan Trokel of the Yan Center for Corrective and Cosmetic Surgery recently interviewed with Lylah Alphnse of the Boston Globe, and states that “I would be reluctant to perform a surgery purely for aesthetic reasons, such as liposuction, without first having counseled them on necessary lifestyle changes such as improved diet and exercise to achieve optimal, long-lasting results… a surgeon should properly assess physical/anatomical and psychological maturity of a potential patient and discuss possible risks and side-effects before proceeding with any form of treatment/procedure.” (Source:  Boston.com)

Teenage girls may not need to pursue cosmetic surgery, but focus instead on other areas of their lives where they can improve their self-esteem. This may include more time with family members, setting goals for their future and working towards them, and building healthy relationships with their peers.

Still, in today’s beauty-obsessed culture, it’s easy to see why many teens begin to believe that plastic or cosmetic surgery is the ultimate answer to their problems.

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UK’s NHS Covers Cosmetic Surgery Costs for Hundreds of Patients

Posted by Cosmetic Surgery Review on June 24, 2009

j0390105Most cosmetic and plastic surgery procedures are not covered by health insurance in the United States, and fall under the ‘elective procedures’ category where the patient must pay for their surgery out of pocket, or pursue patient financing options.

In Great Britain, things are a little different.

The U.K’s National Health Service (NHS) is a government-owned health program that provides healthcare for UK citizens. This program covers the costs of almost all surgical procedures, and also pays for routine exams, check-ups and health-related emergencies. The NHS now pays for cosmetic surgery for select patients, reportedly spending £5.7 million so far for liposuction, breast reduction and rhinoplasty procedures.

According to Cosmetic Surgery Bible, the NHS has covered the costs of cosmetic surgery for over 2,000 patients. Doctors performing the surgeries explain that these procedures are only paid for when cosmetic surgery is needed for medical reasons. There are still rules – for example, a patient would not qualify for the paid surgery if they were suffering from low self-esteem, or if they had general complaints about their appearance – but those who are suffering from severe cases of body dysmorphic disorder, a situation where the person is experiencing extreme psychological distress and impaired social functioning because of their ‘defect’, cosmetic surgery may be covered by the NHS.

The NHS will continue to pay for certain procedures, and reviews each situation on a case by case basis before granting the funds for treatment. Patients who are denied full payment of their proposed treatment still have the option of paying for the surgery on their own, or applying for a personal loan or financing in order to cover the costs of the procedure.

The United States does not operate a program like the National Health Service of the UK, so all prospective patients must find ways to cover the costs. In some rare cases, health insurance plans will pay for bariatric (weight loss) surgery.

Posted in Cosmetic Procedures, Cosmetic Surgery, Cosmetic Surgery Trends, Plastic Surgery Financing | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Medical Spas Thriving in Tough Economy

Posted by Cosmetic Surgery Review on June 23, 2009

Dr_Luciano_BoemiIn spite of reduced consumer spending during times of economic instability, some businesses are managing to stay afloat.

Medical spas are among the thriving businesses during this economy, attracting many people who would have otherwise turned to pricey cosmetic procedures at the plastic or cosmetic surgery center to improve their looks.

One of the key reasons why medical spas are surviving in these tough economic times is because they provide several affordably priced alternatives to facelifts, liposuction and other facial and body enhancement procedures.

Medical spas specialize in temporary and non-invasive treatments such as VelaShape body contouring, Fraxel facial rejuvenation, and ‘no-Botox’ facial treatments that can help reduce fine lines and wrinkles. Even Botox and other injectables may be available at the medical spa, which means those who can’t afford facelift surgery can still improve their looks.

According to a recent article in the Marco Island Sun Times, Liz Havens’ Skin Renewal Systems on Marco Island recently underwent a large-scale expansion just to keep up with the demand for its anti-aging and body contouring procedures.

The medical spa is the only place where visitors can see a plastic surgeon, acupuncturist, hypnotherapist, massage therapist and medical aesthetician in one place, and the spa uses a number of advanced technological devices to achieve long-lasting results.

Medical spas in other areas of the country are also noticing an influx of customers as more people turn to Botox, surgery-free cellulite treatments, and mesotherapy to improve their looks.

Botox and other facial fillers can be administered to mimic the effects of facelift surgery by filling out wrinkles and tightening the skin. Surgery-free cellulite treatments such as VelaSmooth help to tighten and tone the skin, and reduce the appearance of cellulite. Mesotherapy injections may be a valuable alternative to liposuction. All of these procedures cost a fraction of the price of conventional surgery, and also boast less downtime than the average procedure.

(Photo courtesy of SkinRenewalMarco.com)

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FDA Approves At-Home Wrinkle Removal Device

Posted by Cosmetic Surgery Review on June 22, 2009

palomarIf you’ve considered going to the medical spa or cosmetic surgeon’s office to get rid of wrinkles for good with a laser treatment, you may not need to make an appointment just yet.

The US Food and Drug Administration recently approved an at-home laser device that has been designed by Palomar Medical Technologies. This hand-held device is expected to launch in the consumer market through Johnson & Johnson, and will cost several hundred dollars.

Palomar’s laser is the first of its kind to enter the anti-aging and wrinkle removal market, and will open up several opportunities for the company in the consumer skin care industry. According to spokeswoman for Johnson & Johnson, Monica Neufang, the launch date and price has not been confirmed yet.

The company does plan to sell it directly to consumers, and to medical spas and health practitioners who promote anti-aging procedures and at-home care regimens.

Palomar is a medical device company that pioneered the optical hair removal field in 1991. It was one of the first to introduce and promote a laser hair removal system, and their hair removal devices are currently used at many medical spas and aesthetic centers around the country.

The Palomar wrinkle removal device would enable consumers to maintain their youthful looks without surgery, injectable fillers and other pricey cosmetic enhancements. It’s designed with patented technology, and there is currently nothing similar on the market. Until now, consumers have had to turn to cosmetic surgeons to undergo laser treatments such as Fraxel to get rid of wrinkles permanently. Light-based treatments such as intense pulsed light (IPL) and other laser devices can also help reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles.

However, these procedures can cost upwards of $2,000 per session; the Palomar device may be a more attractively-priced option for the thousands of people who looking for ways to stop the clock.

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Medical Spa Unveils No-Needle Botox Treatment

Posted by Cosmetic Surgery Review on June 21, 2009

wrinkleBotox continues to rank at the top of the most popular minimally invasive procedures in the United States, generating over $1.3 billion in sales in 2008 alone.

Botox injections for cosmetic purposes are designed to decrease deep furrows and lines in the forehead, eliminate crow’s feet, and reduce fine lines and wrinkles around other areas of the face. However, these injections do run some risks, and maintaining a Botox treatment plan can be pricey.

One medical spa hopes to capture a portion of the Botox market with an innovative no-needle Botox treatment. The ‘Botox facial’ treatment is available at the Spatique medical spa in Manhattan, and involves a light peel, electrical current technology, and the application of a nourishing cream that helps to tighten and tone the skin.

The peel is designed to tighten the skin from inside out, and the electrical currents are administered to help improve product penetration. The spa insists that there is no actual paralysis of the face with this procedure, but the muscles do become relaxed and the skin becomes tighter, which can reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

The nourishing cream applied to the face is rich in hyaluronic acid, and Vitamins C and E. These are essential ingredients and nutrients for maintaining a youthful appearance, and help to enhance the effects of the treatment. Clients who have undergone the treatment report softer, smoother skin, and a gradual diminishing of fine lines and wrinkles. Most patients notice their skin is glowing after just one session. Though results are more subtle than the standard Botox treatment, this may be a healthy, non-invasive alternative to injections.

One Botox facial session costs approximately $150, and there is no downtime involved. The spa recommends a series of at least six sessions in order to see results, which is the total price of about two Botox injections.

(Source: CBS4.com)

Photo Credit: iStockphoto/Iryna Kurhan via ScienceDaily.com

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