Monthly Archives: August 2010

Aging Earlobes Can Be Treated, Too!

Wrinkles can be found anywhere on the body—even your ears! Never fear, though. Droopy earlobes can be treated with the help of some popular injectables.

Earlobes, just like any area covered by skin, are susceptible to aging. Your ears can droop, wrinkle or even have thinning of the skin—just as the face and neck areas do.

By not wearing heavy earrings and avoiding excessive sun exposure, you can slow the signs of aging lobes.  However, like any part of the body, ears aren’t wrinkle-proof.

Commonly used to treat facial wrinkles, dermal fillers are now being used to treat the signs of aging in earlobes. If you don’t have wrinkly ears but your lobes are drooping as a result of wearing heavy earrings, Juvederm, Restylane or Radiesse can be injected for added support. Fillers will also decrease the appearance of the earring hole.

While some patients may desire more permanent options such as otoplasty, dermal fillers in the earlobe have an immediate effect with no downtime.

At the California Institute for Cosmetic & Reconstructive Surgery, are friendly staff would be delighted to address any questions or concerns you may have about treating the signs of aging in earlobes.

To Your Health & Beauty,

Vipul R. Dev, M.D.


A Solution for Sagging Arms

Sometimes fitness and healthy eating just can’t address all of the problem areas on the body. Weight gain can stretch out the body’s skin and as we age, we lose the elastin that helps the skin bounce back to it’s original form.

Many times patients have concerns have concerns about the excess skin hanging from underneath their arms. If lifting weights and doing push-ups aren’t cutting it, the surgical approach would be to undergo an arm lift, or brachioplasty.

First, a surgeon will remove any extra fat from the arms via liposuction. Once this is done, surplus skin is removed from underneath the arm through an incision that extends from the armpit to the elbow. The doctor will suture the skin back together at the strategically placed incision, leaving a pink scar that stays visible for up to a year.

For patients who have more fat than they do skin, simple liposuction without skin removal may do the trick. If you are a Bakersfield resident who is considering brachioplasty, my friendly staff at the California Institute for Cosmetic and Reconstructive Surgery would be happy to address any of your questions or concerns.

To Your Health & Beauty,

Vipul R. Dev, M.D.

Juvéderm Hydrate Excels in Hydrating, Boosting Volume of Skin

Allergan has introduced a new Hyaluronic acid (HA) filler that is said to both volumize and hydrate skin. Juvéderm Hydrate works like a regular HA filler; only it surpasses the level of standard skin hydration provided by its counterparts. According to a recent study presented at the 8th Anti-Aging Medicine World Congress in Monte Carlo, Monaco, Juvederm Hydrate could potentially set a new standard for skin-rejuvenation therapy.

HA is a common compound used in dermal fillers because of its sponge-life effect and watery consistency. The loss of the naturally occurring polysaccharide AH over time causes skin to look older from fine lines, wrinkles and folds.

Hyaluronic acid is a natural polysaccharide found in skin that has the property of retaining water, and this sponge-like effect is important in keeping the skin hydrated. Over time, the loss of HA results in older-looking skin that is characterized by static fine lines, wrinkles and folds.

According to Cosmetic Surgery Times:

“All of the currently available HA-based fillers, including Juvéderm, are composed of cross-linked HA. These aesthetic gels are useful in the treatment of fine lines and wrinkles not only because of their filling effect, but also because HA attracts water to it, resulting in fuller and smoother skin where injected. Juvéderm Hydrate, on the other hand, is composed of 13.5 mg/g uncross-linked HA and 0.9 percent mannitol, a formulation that results in a reduced free-radical degradation of HA where injected. This leads to extended longevity of the HA, allowing it to attract water over a longer period of time and ultimately improve the aesthetic outcomes of the filler treatment.”

A trial was recently conducted in France on the effects of Juvéderm Hydrate on 27 different women.  The female patients, who had a mean age of 42.6 years, were injected in areas such as the eyes, cheeks, perioral and neckline. The patients’ skin was then assessed at days 15, 30 and 60. At 60 days, Juvéderm Hydrate proved to significantly hydrate the skin at the treated areas. Both doctor and patient satisfaction analysis reported that skin hydration, appearance, texture and brightness were “improved” in 90% of the patients. Furthermore, 80% of the patients treated saw “very improved” skin at day 60.

Of the patients surveyed, approximately 85 said they would recommend the treatment to their friend and undergo another treatment. Non-invasive approaches to skin rejuvenation are often preferred by patients due to cost and downtime. While Juvéderm Hydrate is currently available in England, Italy, France, Germany and Spain, there are no plans to submit it for FDA approval for the American market.

To Your Health & Beauty,

Vipul R. Dev, M.D.

Depressed and Older Patients Are More Satisfied With Surgery Outcomes

A recent study, which was published in the Archives of Facial Plastic Surgery, found that older patients and patients being treated for depression were more likely to be satisfied with the outcome of their plastic surgery.  The study, which surveyed patients undergoing elective facial surgery, also found that generalized pessimism and optimism had no correlation to one’s satisfaction with surgical outcomes.

The study was conducted by Jill L. Hessler, M.D., of Premier Plastic Surgery in California and her colleagues. The group surveyed Fifty-one patients undergoing facial cosmetic between 2007 and 2008. Patients were evaluated by their demographics as well as their levels of optimism and pessimism. In addition, the subjects were asked to complete a surgical outcome survey specific to their cosmetic procedure. The same surveys were issued again four to six months later.

According to the study, patients younger than the average age of 53 were less satisfied with their results than their older counterparts.  The study also found that patients being treated for depression were more satisfied with their results than patients who were not treated for depression.

“The ability to preoperatively identify patient characteristics (psychological, social or demographic) that might impact the subjective perception of surgical outcome and predict dissatisfaction with facial plastic surgery could be highly useful to surgeons,” said the authors. “Although preliminary, our observations provide insight into these relationships and identify potential associations, which establish a basis upon which future studies can be built. In particular, it will be interesting to design larger scale studies to examine the potential associations between perceived surgical outcomes and sex, education, marital status, depression and/or inclination toward optimism/pessimism.”

The authors also noted that older patients may be more satisfied with elective surgery outcomes because they have more realistic

To Your Health & Beauty,

Vipul R. Dev, M.D.

Study: Reality TV Influences Choice to Undergo Plastic Surgery

There’s no denying that teenagers are an impressionable group. Appearance often plays a large role in the social hierarchy of high school, and therefore teens are vulnerable to the influences of the media on their body image. A recent study by a Rutgers-Camden psychologist has now found that teens who watch reality TV are more likely to undergo elective cosmetic surgery.

Charlotte Markey, an associate professor of psychology at Rutgers-Camden, and her husband Patrick Markey of Villanova University conducted the study, which was recently published in the academic journal Body Image. The duo surveyed nearly 200 subjects with an average age of 20-years-old. The immediate responses of both men and women were monitored after they watched both an extreme makeover show and a home improvement program.

The researchers found that women were more likely to want plastic surgery than men and the subjects who viewed the makeover show were more likely to consider plastic surgery than those who didn’t watch the program. The written responses from subjects including comments describing the show as “inspirational” and “I saw an unhappy girl get her dreams.”

For young bodies and minds, the influence of reality TV on body image can stay with them after high school graduation.

Says Charlotte Markey:
“When we think of cosmetic surgery, we don’t think of it as a lifetime issue. There is lots of pressure to look a certain way and I don’t blame them for succumbing; we’re all guilty of feeling vulnerable. But what young men and women think of their bodies now will culminate over time and contribute to their overall health. What troubles me is that there’s no conclusive data that cosmetic surgery even makes people happier, what has been documented is that it makes repeat customers…if plastic surgery makes you feel better about yourself, then why do you keep getting it done? This mindset is very similar to that of an anorexic wanting to lose just five more pounds.”

Reality shows like ABC’s Extreme Makeover, MTV’s I Want a Famous Face, E!’s Dr. 90210 and Oxygen’s Addicted to Beauty all glorify plastic surgery to a young demographic of viewers. This so-called ‘reality’ entertainment is also not an accurate portrayal of real life.

Markey acknowledges that there is a cultural context to never be satisfied with our physical appearance. These messages are prevalent in almost every aspect of our lives and are the reason why Americans have an unhealthy level of insecurity. Children are exposed to unachievable beauty ideals at such a young age that it can permanently cripple their ability to foster self-esteem.  By teaching individuals to be critical of these messages, we may be able to minimize the prevalence of socially ignited mental conditions such as bulimia or body dysmorphic disorder.

To Your Health & Beauty,

Vipul R. Dev, M.D.

Eat Your Way to a Healthy Glow

Most people can agree that a little color in one’s complexion looks good. However, the harmful effects of tanning beds and sun exposure may make you think twice about going for that bronze glow. You don’t have to pray for the revival of pasty look. Turns out that there are foods you can eat that will add a little color to you skin.

Foods rich in carotenoids, like cantaloupe, apricots, carrots, peppers and spinach, reportedly help increase the appearance of a tan. According to a study performed by Ian Stephen, an experimental psychologist at Bristol University, carotenoids—which are found in many plants—afford in part the appearance of a tan.

When it comes to the complexion, there are two types of pigments that affect the yellowness of fairer skin: melanin (affected by UV exposure) and carotenoids. Stephen studied whether betacarotene—a type of carotenoids—can actually alter one’s skin tone. The study found that a diet rich in betacarotene, which is found naturally in green and orange produce, could make the skin appear more attractive in just one month.

During the study, volunteers were asked to judge the before and after photos of Caucasians who consumed a carotenoids. The volunteers consistently chose the golden glow of the after pictures over the paler before pictures.

Not only that, the volunteers preferred the golden glow to the skin tanned by the sun. “We found people always preferred the golden effect from diet to the darker effect from the sun,” said Steven.

This is just another great study supporting the healthy benefits of certain vegetables and another good reason to avoid those tanning beds. Not only that, foods rich in carotenoids are also powerful anti-oxidants.

To Your Health & Beauty,

Vipul R. Dev, M.D.

Cosmetic Surgery Patients Get Older

The face of plastic surgery is getting older. According to the Procedural Data of the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery (AACS) from 2002 to 2007, the average age of patients seeking invasive cosmetic surgery has increased by two years.

As reported by the AACS, the procedures with the largest increase in age are liposuction, sclerotherapy, facelift and forehead lift. Botox®, the most popular non-invasive treatment, has also experience a two year increase in average patient age.

According to, the aging population and baby boomers may be the driving force behind this trend. Baby boomers, who are 42 to 64 years old, make up approximately 28% of the population. The average age of patients receiving invasive plastic surgery is 42.6 years and non-invasive treatments in 42.4 years.

Perhaps, as the baby boomer generation gets older, the plastic surgery clientele gets older. While younger women may seek liposuction or breast augmentation, the country’s number one non-invasive cosmetic treatment, Botox®, is intended for an older grow to battle the signs of aging.

To Your Health & Beauty,

Vipul R. Dev, M.D.