Choosing The Aesthetic Procedure & Physician Right For You

Mature woman looking away day dreamingThere are few things certain in life. One certainty is that every day we each get a little bit older. Somewhere in our thirties we begin to see the tell-tale signs of aging and how it is making us look–and feel–older. In our society, image is important; a more youthful image has always been shown to be preferred to an image where we look our age or older. After all, today’s 60 is supposed to be the new 50 and so on.

Fifteen years ago, anyone having a cosmetic procedure regardless of the invasiveness and the cost was thought of as being vain. Today, all of that has changed. Aesthetic procedures, especially the minimally invasive ones, are mainstream and thought of more as the maintenance needed to maintain a youthful and healthy face and body image.

Facial rejuvenation has long been the most desired cosmetic improvement. In fact, a study published in the British Medical Journal concluded that people who look younger than their chronological age are more likely to live longer than individuals that don’t look younger than their age.

Today, there are more options than ever to refresh that aged, tired, lifeless look that you may feel your mirror is portraying.

If possible, patients would prefer no downtime following procdures while still receiving a refreshed, natural look. Cosmetic injectables can achieve this result. In addition, there are few things more gratifying than walking into an aesthetic physician’s office, having a procedure performed, and leaving that office feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.

Botox®: The Most Popular Cosmetic Injectable

6121According to a report from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, Botox® is the most popular minimally invasive cosmetic procedure for both men and women (Botox® is short for Botulinum Toxin Type A). The glabellar lines, also known as the “frown lines” or “angry lines,” are the most popular area to be treated and the only area presently approved by the FDA for cosmetic use The overwhelming patient acceptance of Botox® has led to its use in other areas, such as forehead creases and what we call “crow’s feet” that appear around the eyes.

The primary effect of the Botox® injection is to offer controlled muscle relaxation lasting up to several months. “Most patients want to maintain use of their expressive muscle tone so that they still have movement, resulting in a very natural, appealing look; they don’t want to give away any tell-tale signs of treatment. The procedure is usually performed within minutes, and will offer significant results within days, which leads to a level of improvement that lasts for three-four months. What’s most important is to find a physician who is experienced in doing Botox® injections and devotes a significant part of

his practice to cosmetic injectable treatment. The more prominent cosmetic companies—such as Allergan and Medicis–have status indicators which inform the prospective patient of the physicians that are doing the most injectables.

Dermal Fillers Offer a “quick fix”

6135At one time, a facelift was considered to be the only treatment available to treat wrinkles and sagging but with that comes anesthesia, downtime, and irreversible results, for better or for worse. Today, there are a variety of fillers available to “plump up” folds and deep lines, or just soften more superficial lines. The most popular fillers in the country today are hylauronic acid products such as Restylane®, Perlane®, and Juvederm® and the calcium hydroxylapitite product Radiesse®. While Sculptra® (polylactic acid) is technically not a filler, it does offer some collagen building complex and anchoring for volume loss and sallow areas of the face.

Restylane®, Perlane® and Juvederm® are by far the most popular fillers and target lower face folds and wrinkles primarily, lasting from six months to one year, Dermal fillers are very popular as patients receive an instantaneous result from the injection.

How to Choose a Cosmetic Injectable Provider

6153Since there is no “board certification” yet that pertains to cosmetic injectables and is AMA- or AOA-recognized in this subspecialized area of medicine, you do need to ask the right questions prior to deciding which physician—and procedure—is right for you. The doctors who consistently obtain the best results are most likely the ones who have the most experience and best technology. There is also a level of skill and art to round out the equation for optimal results.

To find a physician who is skillful and proficient, be sure to ask him or her the following questions during your consultation:

• How long have you been doing this procedure?

• How many of these procedures do you do each week? Each month? Each year?

• What is your status with the major injectable companies Allergan and Medicis?

• Have you trained other physicians in performing cosmetic injectables?

A reputable aesthetic phyisican should not hesitate to provide accurate answers to these and any other questions you may have.

Cost Factor

Both Botox® cosmetic and dermal fillers are affordable today by most patient standards; however, it is still important to know what you are getting for your hard-earned money. Botox® is delivered in units; the injector should tell you how many units you are receiving. The price of Botox® varies from office to office, as does the price for administering a syringe of Restylane®, Perlane®, Juvederm®, Ultra or UltraPlus.

To obtain the best value, find a provider who can deliver optimal results at a fair price in a comfortable office setting.

Glenn A. DeBias, D.O., is Medical Director of the Institute for Laser and Aesthetic Medicine with offices in Bethlehem, Doylestown, and King of Prussia. For more information, visit or call (866) 48-LASER.

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