Monthly Archives: January 2011

FDA Issues New Rules for Prescription Drugs w/Acetaminophen

The FDA has long been concerned about the amount of unidentified acetaminophen in prescription drugs such as Vicodin, Percocet, Lortab, Fioricet, and Roxicet. According to the FDA reports, acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol, is often found in large amounts in these, and other, prescription pain meds. Although when taken in normal doses Tylenol is very safe but when added to prescription pain pills, consumers can ingest large amounts of acetaminophen, which can lead to emergency room visits, hospitalizations, liver damage and even death. Statistics show that last year over 56,000 hospital ER visits, 26,000 hospital admissions and 458 deaths occurred due to acetaminophen overdose. In fact, it’s the leading cause of acute liver failure here in the US, because it’s so easy to take too much of it.

Within the next three years, the FDA has dictated that:

  • Prescription pain drugs can contain no more than 325 milligrams of acetaminophen per pill or spoonful. Currently, some of these drugs contain as much as 750 milligrams of acetaminophen.
  • Prescription pain drugs will carry the FDA’s strongest “black box” warning label. That label will warn of the risk of serious liver injury.

Obviously, these changes apply only to prescription drugs.

“When taken as directed, acetaminophen is a very safe product. Our goal is to make it even safer,” Sandra Kweder, deputy director of the FDA’s office of new drugs, said at a news teleconference.

Our advice is to be aware of the acetaminophen in any prescription drug you take, as well as OTC (over-the-counter) medications, as 4,000 mg has been shown to cause liver damage. If you don’t know if there’s acetaminophen in a pain, cold or other preparation, whether OTC or by prescription, ask the pharmacist to explain it to you. Better safe than sorry!

To your health & beauty,

Vip Dev, MD

New Supplement Increases Effectiveness of Botox/Dysport by 93%!!

Dr. Charles Soparkar, an oculoplastic surgeon at The Methodist Hospital in Houston, Texas and his fellow researchers have performed a study showing that by ingesting a combination of organic zinc plus the enzyme phytase for a period of four days before receiving Botox or Dysport injections made the toxin 93% more effective. As a result of this good news, the researchers have filed for a patent of the two supplements. It’s called ZYTAZE™ and will be available any day now. Although most of the patients in the study were being treated for a rare form of eyelid spasm, this research is great news for everyone who gets injections of Botox or Dysport for cosmetic reasons.

“Surprisingly, the results showed that in over 90% of the patients studied, the zinc/phytase combination resulted in a remarkable improved responsiveness to treatment of blepharospasm using the same amount of botulinum toxin as previously used,” said Soparkar. “The toxins seemed to have greater effect and last longer. Potentially, this could mean using less toxin, offering patients financial savings, greater safety, and more consistent results.”

ZYTAZE is licensed to OCuSOFT, Inc., a company that focuses its efforts on ophthalmic research and development.

If the prescription isn’t too expensive, it could result in an overall savings for those using Botox or Dysport for wrinkle reduction, as less of the toxin will be needed and the results will last longer. I’ll update you as soon as I hear any further news on this topic.

To your health & beauty,

Vip Dev, MD

What do ribs have to do with a rhinoplasty?

With most rhinoplasty procedures (aka nose job) performed at my Bakersfield plastic surgery office, it’s a matter of realigning the cartilage to create a straighter nose, a shorter nose or a better tip.

However, in some rhinoplasty procedures, like the correction of a low bridge (see photo at left), cartilage made be added, usually from another part of patient’s nose or the ear. But when there isn’t enough cartilage in these areas, or it’s too thin, an experimental technique employing rib cartilage shows a great amount of potential for an alternative with excellent outcomes. When there is severe bony abnormality or a saddle nose deformity, rib material can also be used.

REASONS TO CONSIDER NOSE RESHAPING:

  • Nose deformities from accidents, previous surgeries or genetics
  • Those who consider their nose too big, too wide or too long, who want better proportion
  • Correction of an overly arched or “Roman” nose
  • To help with breathing or snoring
  • To fix a crooked nose or remove a hump in the nose
  • To repair a previous rhinoplasty, called revision rhinoplasty

If you are having trouble breathing through your nose as you age, that can be a sign of a collapsing side wall of the nose. This also can be repaired with a rhinoplasty procedure.

To your health & beauty,

Vip Dev, MD