Fourth Quarter 2009, Volume 23, Number 2

Competition in the work environment? Rejuvenate your face to help stay ahead


Domestic Violence Survivors Receive Assistance

Competition in the work environment? Rejuvenate your face to help stay ahead

Ask the Surgeon / Health Tip / What’s New

Contemplating ear surgery for your child? Timing is everything

Consumers are choosing to spend their money on themselves to secure their next paycheck. Studies show that more attractive people receive advantages in the workplace. With survival of the fittest still ruling the day, employees are trying to stay viable by keeping their appearance fresh and youthful.

According to a survey by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, minimally invasive procedures continue to increase with one of the top reasons stated by clients is to remain competitive in the job market. Over 75 percent of patients—regardless of choosing a non-surgical or surgical procedure— stated that their career was the reason why they were seeking facial plastic surgery.

Non-surgical procedures
A quick and less expensive way to fight the aging process is to have a nonsurgical treatment. The top nonsurgical procedures for both men and women in 2008 were Botox®, hyaluronic acid, microdermabrasion, and chemical peels.

Botox® and Dysport® were approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to help reduce the signs of aging. It is injected under the skin to weaken the muscles in the forehead and around the eyes that pull the skin and cause wrinkles. The procedure is minimally invasive, so there is no need for sedation or local anesthetic. There is no recovery time and results should last three to six months.

Hyaluronic acid is a dermal filler approved by the FDA for correction of moderate to severe facial wrinkles and folds. This gel compound serves many purposes including filling the space between collagen and elastin fibers providing cushioning; transporting nutrients from the blood to the skin; and retaining water within the cell promoting volume and protection. By adding a hyaluronic filler, your skin is immediately rejuvenated and smoother. Results are long lasting, although the body naturally absorbs the injectable over time.

Microdermabrasion uses a rotating brush or a pressurized stream of fine particles to remove the top layers of the skin to treat scars, wrinkles, sun damaged skin, or uneven skin color. The underlying, undamaged dermal layer is exposed and the production of collagen is promoted. The result of this treatment is a new, smoother layer. There is little recovery time and most of the time, you can resume normal activities immediately.

Chemical peels facilitate resurfacing of the skin by causing gentle coagulation and removal of the outermost layers; this allows smoother and more supple skin to regenerate. This is an effective treatment for wrinkles caused by sun damage, mild scarring, and certain types of acne. The deeper the peel, the longer the recovery time, with an average of two weeks.

Surgical procedures
Surgery provides more dramatic results. In 2008, the top surgical procedure for men was rhinoplasty (nose surgery), followed by blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery), facelift, and scar revision. For women, facelifts outnumbered blepharoplasty, rhinoplasty, and skin resurfacing.

Rhinoplasty improves the function or shape of the nose. Whether you are unhappy with the size, shape, or would like to improve your ability to breathe, altering your nose will significantly impact your overall appearance. A surgeon can reduce or increase parts of your nose, remove a hump, change the shape of the tip or bridge, or narrow the nostril span. This surgery requires at least two weeks recovery time, with specific post-surgery instructions from your surgeon.

Facelift procedure is used to smooth and tighten the skin in the lower part of the face. The underlying muscles can also be tightened and repositioned. The signs of aging are lessened by shaping the neck area, reducing jowls, and refining the jaw line. The result is a younger looking you, with dramatic improvement in the lower two-thirds of the face. Blepharoplasty provides options for reshaping and adjusting the lids for both cosmetic and functional purposes. Cosmetically, you may want to reduce the excess skin in your upper eyelids to create a younger, more wide-eyed appearance or create a crease in the upper eyelid.

Blepharoplasty can also be used to correct ptosis, a drooping upper eyelid that is congenital or develops with age. Patients whose field of vision is limited due to ptosis may be able to seek insurance reimbursement since the procedure is medically necessary. Surgery on the lower lids can reduce the appearance of bags under the eyes.

Scar revision depends on the type of scar. Treatment may range from topical steroid creams and steroid injections to excising the scar and replacing it with a skin graft. Laser resurfacing and microdermabrasion may also be used to decrease the appearance of the scar. The scar tissue can be excised and closed with one or more layers of stitches if additional revision is necessary.

Skin resurfacing, or laser surgery, is used to resurface facial skin with wrinkles caused by excess sun exposure, “crow’s feet,” and acne scarring. The high energy, amplified light waves of carbon dioxide (CO2) laser vaporize the top layer of skin instantly, with no bleeding and minimal trauma to the surrounding skin. The convalescence period depends on the extent of the area and strength of the laser.