Are Your Hands Giving Away Your Age?

How many people do you know who have been celebrating their 30th birthdays for a few years now?  Sure we may feel young in fashionable clothes and are able to keep up with the lingo of younger generations, but when it comes to aging there isn’t much we can do to hide its transparency without a little assistance.  When gravity begins to take its toll on the skin, as we age, it becomes thin, starts to sag and more pronounced wrinkles and brown spots appear.  Fortunately, advancements in both nonsurgical and surgical cosmetic treatments make it possible to help reduce common signs of aging on the hands and face so you can keep everyone guessing as to what your real age is.

radiesse hand rejuvenation atlanta gaWith the face being one of the most prominent features that is most noticed in daily interactions with people, an aged appearance can make us look tired and dull.  However, solely looking at someone’s face is not always going to be a dead giveaway of their age; we’ve all seen how genetics can keep women and men looking years younger than they really are.  But if you look at the hands, they can be quite telling of a person’s age.  Our hands are constantly exposed to harmful environmental elements, like sun damage, and unless you are wearing daily SPF, there isn’t much you can do naturally to slow down the process.  Cosmetic injectables like Botox® and facial fillers like Juvéderm® and Restylane® have seen successes as wrinkle-reducing treatments for the face, but recently the popular filler Radiesse® was FDA-approved for hand rejuvenation.

Hand rejuvenation using Radiesse® works similarly to the way treatments are administered for areas of the face.  I like to start by determining the appropriate amount of filler to be used to fill out the bony, delicate skin that has thinned out on the hands.  Once I am ready to start injecting, I lift the skin off of the back of the hand (making sure to avoid tiny vessels) and inject the filler into areas that can use plumping.  After the injections are administered, I then gently massage Radiesse® into the hands to even out any bumps and make sure that the treatment successfully covers the soft tissue and creates less prominent veins and tendons.  There is a numbing agent within in the Radiesse® syringe that helps alleviate discomfort for patients and only minimal swelling or bruising may occur after treatment. Results can be seen immediately after treatment and patients can return to their normal activities.   Generally, patients can expect their results to last 1-2 years and touch ups are encouraged to continue stimulating collagen, reduce volume loss and overall extend the result of your younger, more rejuvenated hands.

To learn about hand rejuvenation, cosmetic injectables or the various facial rejuvenation treatments offered at Southern Plastic Surgery, P.C., please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.  Stay up to date on the latest cosmetic plastic surgery and skincare news by following me, Dr. David Whiteman, on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

You Are Your Biggest Advocate: How to Avoid Botched Botox®

Let me share a story I recently read: a 37-year old woman goes to a plastic surgeon who recommends she try a wrinkle-reduction treatment, Botox®.  She receives treatment below her eyes and in her lips.  Within hours the woman is rushed to the hospital for facial swelling and paralysis.  What was supposed to be a purified form of botulinum toxin A turned out to be none other than snake venom that was meant to be utilized in topical creams.  But as the picture below shows, snake venom is incredibly dangerous when injected into the face and ended up leaving this poor woman’s face paralyzed for an entire year.

Can you imagine not being able to cry, smile or laugh because of a single cosmetic injectable treatment, or any facial plastic surgery procedure for that matter.  This type of scenario unfortunately is not new.  The FDA has been cracking down on Botox® scamming since 2004 when they were called to investigate four separate hospitalizations in Florida after patients were injected with unapproved Botox®.  Physicians are trying to cut corners and are purchasing off-market brands that purport to be Botox® (often coming from foreign countries with labels that aren’t even in English).  It’s not until something tragic happens that it is later revealed that either the doctor never confirmed the product’s legality or simply chose to ignore and warnings of harmful effects clearly written on product labels.

Either way it’s wrong.  As a double board certified plastic surgeon it is my belief that we are meant to practice medicine for the greater cause of our patients; putting safety and well-being first and foremost.    While there are inherent risks associated with every surgical procedure, I want each and every one of you to know that you can help reduce these risks – it just takes being your biggest advocate and taking just a few steps can make all the difference in your safety:

  • Be cautious.  Have you ever heard the saying, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is?  Of course this doesn’t apply to everything, but if when it comes to invasive and non-invasive plastic surgery you get what you pay for.  Do your research on pricing; talk to friends, family or coworkers who may have tried Botox® to get an idea of what treatments generally cost.  Don’t jump at the first option just because you like the price tag.
  • Be proactive. What I mean by this is do your research and ask yourself a lot of questions.  Being a physician doesn’t necessarily mean they’re the best at what they do.  When looking for a surgeon make sure you verify their credentials.  Are they board certified in their field of medicine; have they proven to the medical board that they have completed rigorous qualifications in order to attain board certification?  How many patients have they treated with Botox®?   Does the surgeon have excellent before and after photos from previous Botox® patients?  Have those previous patients spoken highly of the surgeon in their reviews?  Lots of things should be considered before you even meet with the surgeon.  Which leads me to recommend that you:
  • Be picky.  Meet with as many surgeons as you feel comfortable meeting.  Consultations are where you can get hard answers with your own ears and eyes.  When you go to the surgeon’s office make sure that the environment itself is clean and in a reputable location (meaning if you end up in a basement with no windows or a dilapidated shopping center, you may want to think twice about choosing that practice).  You have a right to decide who you allow to treat your skin care concerns and this is one instance where being picky is 100% encouraged!

Creating a long-standing relationship with your plastic surgeon, one who you trust and would entrust friends and family to visit as well, is important when helping ensure the best possible cosmetic results.  Sorting through lists of qualified surgeons can seem daunting, but trust me when I say all of the work is worth it.  If you have any questions or concerns regarding Botox®, patient safety or would like to discuss future goals you have for yourself, please don’t hesitate to contact Southern Plastic Surgery.  You can also follow me, Dr. David Whiteman, on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ for more updates and plastic surgery news in the future.

The Benefits of Combining Plastic Surgery Procedures

During consultations, Dr. David Whiteman meets with patients who often express aesthetic concerns for more than one area of their face and/or body. At Southern Plastic Surgery, P.C., Dr. Whiteman offers procedures like facial rejuvenation and mommy makeover surgery that combine cosmetic treatments into a single procedure. Combining procedures lends other advantages in addition to overall rejuvenation as patients can avoid having two or more separate operations and recovery periods to reduce facility and anesthesia costs and overall downtime.

discussing options with plastic surgeonMany patients interested in facial procedures may want to smooth wrinkles and furrows while also addressing features like the nose or eyes. Cosmetic procedures such as blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery), facelift, and rhinoplasty can all address signs of aging including drooping skin, wrinkles, and lines. Botox® and facial fillers can also be applied with surgical procedures for improved anti-aging results. By combining procedures, Dr. Whiteman can help patients achieve a more refreshed, balanced look.

Breast augmentation and breast lift surgery can be performed at the same time to restore breasts for a more youthful look. Breast augmentation and reduction adjust breast shape and volume while a lift removes excess skin and tightens the areas surrounding the breasts. In addition to the breast procedures mentioned above, body procedures can be combined as well.

Body procedures can be combined to achieve a leaner contour as liposuction removes unwanted fat while abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) eliminates loose, hanging skin. Breast surgery and body contouring procedures are commonly combined in a procedure known as mommy makeover to help women achieve pre-baby bodies.

It’s important for patients to have good overall health prior to choosing combination procedures as time under anesthesia is longer and complication risk can increase. After surgery, Dr. Whiteman strongly recommends adapting a healthy diet and regular exercise routine to maintain and improve plastic surgery results. Dr. Whiteman shares his special interest of health and wellness through his blog including exercise and diet tips, healthy recipes, and safely healing from your procedure. If you’re interested in mommy makeover or any other procedure, contact us today to schedule a consultation. Connect with Southern Plastic Surgery on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ for more plastic surgery news and our latest specials.