While we in the cosmetic industry are getting better and better at delivering the results that patients expect, I still hold fast that 60 to 70% of modern high-tech materials and devices in plastic surgery over promise and under deliver ! Considering that the future of plastic surgery will be less about actual surgery as more more and more technological advances are made in the lab (think genetic engineering, better fillers, better lasers, etc.), this 60-70% statistic is rather disappointing. What makes this all the more egregious is the fact that doctors are forced to pay an arm and a leg for such underperforming technologies (Ulthera ® Thermage®, etc.). In light of the fact you can get a state-of-the-art Tesla with all the bells and whistles for around $100,000, paying $150,000 or more for a machine that just delivers fuddy-duddy ultrasound technology through a wand to aid in liposuction is frankly outrageous. However, the medical tech companies can’t be solely blamed for this-they are basically governed by the FDA’s policies which, in turn, are a response to precedents extrapolated to an absurd degree by lawyers. Unfortunately, I have seen it all too many times – a new plastic surgery technology coming out amidst a flurry of media only to fade into relatively rapid obscurity. This is similar to a Billboard chart topper only to turn out to be a one-hit wonder! In my opinion the latest overhyped snakeoil is Kybella® from the big pharma conglomerate Allergan®, proud makers of Latisse®, Botox®, Voluma®, Juvéderm®, etc. I was glad to hear from some of my esteemed colleagues at the recent American Society of Plastic Surgery meeting in Los Angeles that their thoughts on Kybella ® echoed mine. Taking into account Kybella’s negative points, which include: 1. relative risk of damaging important facial nerves, 2. cost (though one treatment is less expensive than liposuction, more often than not multiple treatments are necessary and these, of course, add up), 3. associated pain, 4. longer recovery (which, ironically, is worse than surgical liposuction since remarkable swelling can occur after every injection session) and 5. inferior results to those obtained with aesthetically and skillfully performed liposuction …there is little to no advantage in utilizing Kybella® for my patients except perhaps for its superior multi-million dollar marketing campaign! Indeed, micro liposuction can provide unprecedented control in removing fat to treat a double chin while refining the jawline and addressing the jowls as well-all with less downtime and more economically so in the end. Case in point:
Know your nose job options: knife or needle?
…and it doesn’t involve surgery.Your new plastic surgeon offered to inject filler into your nose to camouflage the irregularities, smooth and even out your bridge and even give you more of a chic tip. From the front view, by strategically injecting the filler to alter the light reflex and control shadows your deviated nose can even be made to appear straight. He/she offers you a temporary or permanent filler. The temporary ones can serve as a dress rehearsal, so to speak, if you are unsure as to whether this is a good idea or not. Temporary ones such as hyaluronic acid (e.g., Juvederm ®, Restylane ®, Voluma ®) or calcium hydroxyapatite (Radiesse ®)are good choices. Permanent ones such as Bellafill ®, Aquamid ® (not FDA approved) or fat transfer (a living transplant from your own body) are all excellent fillers in my opinion. You decide to go for it but you must be counseled to have realistic expectations. Fillers definitely cost less and involve less recovery (a few days of swelling and perhaps minor bruising at worst). However, the filler solution will: 1. Neither help breathing problems 2. Nor will they treat all forms of aesthetic deformities such as this: So the next time you’re considering altering the shape of your nose with a rhinoplasty of some sort, you may ask your plastic surgeon (hopefully, board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery) about the filler option. Albeit, it cannot match the power of an actual surgical rhinoplasty, the non-surgical, filler rhinoplasty can be an excellent alternative to actual scalpel- based surgery in many select circumstances. In these cases, the needle can be more powerful than the knife as one can see below:
Read the original article about Dr. Randal Haworth here:
Hollywood Reporter Best Doctors 2015
After examining thousands of breasts throughout my 20 years of private practice, I have come to realize that those who sleep in a brassiere generally have perky breasts than those who don’t. Specifically, those who wear a bra during the day and not one at night tend to have breasts which are wider, yet flatter and concave on top with their nipples still point upwards.
There is no muscle in the breasts therefore neither exercise nor yoga positions will help. There’s even poorly conceived research stating that wearing a bra creates more drooping of the breast because “they limit the growth of supporting breast tissue, leaving the breast to wither away and degrade more quickly”! In other words, they imply that the stress of gravity is good for the breast, training it like a muscle. If that were the case, patients could simply gain and lose excessive weight repeatedly in order to” train the skin” so that stretch marks can be avoided. OK…but I then wonder why pregnancy results in abdominal stretch marks…hmmmm? My job as a plastic surgeon is to not just simply do the surgery and wish my patients all the best as they fade into the sunset. I feel it is my responsibility to also provide an “instruction manual” so to speak on how to manage their aesthetic wellness outside of my clinic and operating room.
For example, after facial surgery I recommend specialized skin care regimens and after body sculpting, certain diet and exercise. However, after breast surgery, few if any plastic surgeons recommend long term breast care except for incision/scar management, implant massage and mammograms. You only have one set of breasts and whether or not you choose to undergo plastic surgery, it is equally important to invest time and not just money in protecting their aesthetic wellness as appropriately early as you can. As soon as a young woman’s breasts are large enough to fall off the side of their chest when they are lying down is the ideal time to prevent them from doing so! In the same way that gravity exerts an affect on a woman’s breasts when she stands, it also profoundly affects them when she lies down. However, wearing a regular, daytime bra to bed simply did not provide the specialized support that was needed when on one’s back and side. When calling the support specialized, I am referring specifically to secure lateral outside support to keep the breasts from falling off to the side in addition to inner or middle support to prevent the upper breast from falling onto the lower during side sleeping. There were no bras on the market that addressed these important issues. It is for that reason that I developed NightLift ®. It had to fill three criteria: 1. First and foremost, it had to be comfortable, like a second skin if you will. Despite providing unparalleled support, no underwires exist within this bra. 2. It had to work. 48 prototypes were developed over several years to ensure ultimate support without wire or compression. We call this technology B.U.S.T. ® (bilateral uplift support technology). 3. It has to be stylish and sexy so a woman not only feels fabulous but also looks great, whether she’s alone or with her partner. Whether a woman has undergone breast surgery or not, I recommend night list to all of my patients if she is concerned with aesthetic wellness of her breasts. After breast surgery (including breast augmentation, mastopexy or breast reduction) I fit my patients in NL a week after surgery when most swelling has dissipated. Since NL provides incredibly comfortable support without hurtful underwire, patients fall in love with this and it soon becomes a staple within their lingerie collection. Randal Haworth MD To learn more, go to Nightlift.com
A recent study came out in our esteemed, peer-reviewed journal Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery addressing stem cell enriched fat transfer versus “regular” fat transfer (PRS Journal: stem cell rich fat transfer). In essence, this study showed there was no difference in the effects of a fat transfer whether it was enriched with stem cells or not. This was essentially the same conclusion of a blog post I wrote a few years back. However, what makes this news different is that it comes from a well-designed, randomized prospective study.
You may then ask yourself why are there so many doctors promoting stem cell facelifts and fat transfers as being the chalice of youth or life’s elixir to immortality and aging. The simple answer is finance and marketing. By promoting your fat transfer as being different, labeling it with the trendy buzz prefix of “stem cell”, prospective patients will naturally think they are getting something better, longer-lasting and more natural.
You may then ask yourself why their before-and-after photos are impressive. The simple answer is that for every before-and-after photo of a stem cell-enriched fat transfer there are 10 equally-as-impressive before-and-after results from regular fat transfers. The bottom line is that one can achieve equivalent results from a regular, well-performed fat transfer-specifically, one in which the fat is appropriately harvested, cleaned and transferred by the physician with precision and artistry. Fat is basically serving as a filler, but one that is extraordinary. Extraordinary because it is not only permanent but is actually living as well-consequently it can grow or shrink depending if the patient gains or loses weight, respectively.
Stem cell science is in its infancy and we have much to learn. Indeed, many stem cell scientists now believe that the byproducts of stem cells (cytokines, etc) play a far more important role in healing than the actual stem cells themselves.Fat is a rich source of stem cells but to assume that the stem cells, when transplanted into the face, can miraculously know how to uniquely reverse aging is pipe-dreaming at best.
Randal Haworth M.D., F.A.C.S.
1. Overly pulled face skin with diagonal grooves
2. Altered hairlines such as pulled-back sideburns
3. Widened, non-hair-bearing scars with step-offs in the natural hairline behind the ear
4. Distorted anatomy in front of the ear canal due to effacement of the delicate tragus cartilage and finally…
Most of these aforementioned problems stem from misplaced anchoring of the newly redraped skin flaps resulting in needlessly excessive tension across potentially visible scars. One immutable rule in plastic surgery dictates that such increased tension can create widened scars, hair loss and distorted anatomy. Yet, despite these well-documented problems, I unfortunately still see many patients who seek correction of these stigmata of ill-conceived facelifts.
Correcting these problems is not an easy task. Generally, a secondary facelift needs to be performed to release enough skin so that both scars can be removed and closure achieved in a tension-free matter. If it happens to be a lucky day, scars that were placed in front of the ear can even be moved more posteriorly to within the ear canal as in this example of a facelift I performed in order to not only make her look younger but also remove her telltale signs of past substandard surgery.