In a savvy Allure magazine article, Joan Kron states, “…the most dangerous word in plastic surgery may be ‘new.'” She warns not to impulsively undergo cosmetic procedures just because the advertisements are seductive or because you saw them on TV.
There are effective tried and true surgical and nonsurgical cosmetic procedures available, so avoid those that are untested, ineffective, painful, risky, or outdated.
Here are some procedures that Allure magazine, February 2013, suggests you should approach cautiously.
The vampire facelift: The basic premise is that if your doctor injects your own yellow blood plasma around your eyes and mouth, the growth factors in your plasma will gradually stimulate collagen production. What's confusing is that doctors commonly inject Juvederm at the same time, a hyaluronic agent that has immediate plumping effects. Juvederm is FDA-approved and clinically proven to yield results, while plasma injection is unproven and adds a hefty $1,000 to your bill.
Laser liposuction: In this procedure the high heat from lasers melts your fat before it is removed from your body. A laser wand (the melting device) is inserted under your skin before another tube vacuums out your fat. The benefit of the laser is better skin tightening, more elasticity, and less bruising. But some plastic surgeons cite disadvantages, including the risks of a burn, large scars, tissue hardening, and prolonged pain.
The stem cell facelift: Almost 10 years ago claims started to appear that stem cells in fat improved skin quality. Shortly thereafter, injection of your own fat to plump certain areas in your face was called a “stem cell facelift.” Sounds irresistible, but a chair of plastic surgery at the University of Texas says “the idea that fat injections can replace a traditional facelift is high on marketing and short on science.” Stem cells may be the great hope of modern medicine, but right now there's no FDA-approved device to separate stem cells from fat and no proof that stem cells rejuvenate the face.
Sculptra and Artefill for Lips: Sculptra, a chemical injected into the face to stimulate collagen growth, shows good results in the temples and the cheeks. But, when injected into the lips it can create ugly lumps, bumps, and make your lips overly inflated. Artefill, a mixture of Plexiglas-like beads and cow collagen is approved for filling smile lines only.
Injected into the lips, Artefill can result in clumps and nodules that won't disappear until they are cut out. To enhance your lips, have them injected with temporary fillers such as Juvederm and Restylane.
The best way to figure out what procedures will give you the most bang for your buck is a face-to-face consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon.
For more, visit The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery website at http://www.surgery.org/