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Cosmetic Surgery and Skin Care News
Cosmetic surgery is booming in America. As more physicians become involved in this new area of medicine, the public all too often becomes confused with advertisements and claims as to truths and realistic expectations in post-treatment results. Along with this concern comes the bewildering and at times critical comments about which specialty and training program produce the best cosmetic doctors. In truth, there are multiple academies, societies, and certifying boards which encompass some degree of training in cosmetic medicine. Within each specialty there exist areas of training and innovations that are not seen elsewhere. Consequently, no organization can claim that members are the best trained physicians to treat any or all aspects of this rapidly growing science. In truth, medical education is a continuing responsibility. Initiated with basic residency training, proceeds with specialized fellowships, and progresses it to a Board certification process. This provides the cosmetic surgeon with the basic background tools, but certainly not the finished product. From there, experience, continuing workshops, meetings, seminars, visitations with authorities in the field, and even more clinical experience make up the fine tooling of a cosmetic specialist. Board certification implies that the physician has met the specific requirements of training and experience and has passed a written and oral examination on specific medical and surgical topics. While a critical detail in any potential surgeon's resume, Board certification alone does not guarantee excellence in clinical practice. No matter how prestigious the training and how vigorous some egomaniacal claims of superiority, Board-certified cosmetic physicians still must deal with risks and complications and should provide patients with realistic informed consent at the time of preoperative counseling in cosmetic medicine, a significant overlap exists within different specialties.
Neck Surgery (platysmaplasty)
Despite the uniform excellent results, understanding the limitations of face/neck lifting and the need to utilize other procedures is crucial for success. First, the patients learn that a facelift means lifting of the cheek, jowls and neck. Incisions are placed in the hairline and around the ear. In all cases, these incisions are placed in a natural skin crease for camouflage and without the need for shaving of hair. The surgery can take 2-4 hours, usually performed under intravenous sedation, and without any patient discomfort. Following surgery, a dressing is applied to protect the face and is removed the day after. Many surgeons use a daily magnetic resonance imaging (Soft Pulse), massage and ultrasound to hasten postoperative healing. Most patients are cosmetically sociable in 10-14 days.
The "turkey neck" can have an aging impact on your entire appearance. The method to achieve this result is called platysmaplasty, or the stitching of the underlying muscles in the front of the neck and back borders, tightening the muscle like a corset. Once the underlying structure is in place, the skin on top is draped over, with the process continued up to the cheek area, if needed. The underlying work, which removes fat before the skin is draped, is vital to a good neck lift. If the underlying area is not sufficiently treated, laxity will remain and the "neck bands" will return sooner, as the skin stretches in the first 12-18 months post-op. Undertreating is more commonly seen than overtreating. In the latter case, skin circulation could be compromised and the skin could scar. Non-conservative, deliberate overtreatment is difficult to justify, even though a slightly longer lasting result may be achieved.