With a recent news article about breast implant-associated anaplastic large-cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL), this rare disease has gotten more notice. Here are the important facts: BIA-ALCL has been recognized since 2011, and to date there have been 359 medical device reports made to the FDA (though these are unconfirmed, and may be duplicates). To give you perspective, around 550,000 breast implants are placed per year. BIA-ALCL is associated with textured breast implants, and the lifetime risk is 1:30,000 women who have these kinds of implants. Most implants are smooth (over 80% of implants), the texture is added for anatomic-shaped implants to help prevent rotation and displacement. The recently popular anatomic cohesive gel implants (“Gummy bear”) are generally textured; only one company, Mentor, has started to offer smooth anatomic cohesive gel implants. When treated appropriately, 93% of patients with BIA-ALCL are disease-free. What to look for: swelling suggesting a fluid collection around the implant, more than one year after implant placement. If you have any concerns, please do see your breast or plastic surgeon. Here is more information from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.
Our friends at Byrdie nicely summarized the important things about lip injections – what to know before you try. “we all want to say that we #wokeuplikethis, even if our dirty little secret is that we got a little outside help. Ideally, you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference.” So true! Natural is what we like – “my lips but better.”
Our friends at Byrdie nicely reviewed some rarer plastic surgery procedures that are becoming more popular: non-surgical rhinoplasty: Liquid rhinoplasty simply involves injecting fillers into the bridge of the nose. It’s a great option for camouflaging a small bump, building up a flat bridge, or for fixing small imperfections after a normal rhinoplasty. This is gaining popularity as it leads to a quick fix with no downtime. hand fillers: So many people concentrate on their face and then their hands give their age away. There is a new focus on the aging hand. These increasingly popular injections plump up the hands, minimizing the appearance of bones and tendons to create a smoother, more youthful look. neck liposuction (for just under the chin!): Many patients have a little extra fat under their chin, which can easily be removed. eyelid procedures: As we get older, the skin on our upper eyelids droops, and the fat on our lower eyelids becomes displaced, creating a puffy appearance. Plastic surgeons are often able to remove excess skin from the upper lids without general anesthesia. Patients leave with a freshened, more awake appearance. Dr. Yee enjoys using refined techniques for these procedures, as they can lead to subtle improvements.
Effy Redman penned a lovely essay about her experience with Mobius syndrome. In this congenital deformity, the nerves that supply the muscles in the face don’t develop properly, so children have little to no expression. A “social smile” develops by around 6 weeks of age, so very quickly there can be a disconnect from the baby’s feelings, and what others perceive, limiting and changing communication. Currently we have to wait for children to be big enough to have microsurgery, to transplant a muscle and connect its supplying nerve to one of the functioning muscles used for chewing, to create a smile; and it takes two surgeries, one for each side. Depending on the child’s size, this can be around 5-7 years of age. We often talk about restoring smiles with cleft lip repair (“Operation Smile”, “Smile Train”) but this is a rarer and more challenging condition to treat, though it is similarly rewarding!
Over at Refinery29, they collected great advice about how to plan for a breast augmentation. See the best (which we agree with!) below: First things first: Do a little homework. While an indiscriminate Google search on boob jobs, lifts, or reductions will probably take you down a rabbit hole of overwhelming (and sometimes dubious) information, focused initial research is crucial. The two most comprehensive and, more importantly, plastic-surgeon vetted and recommended sites are the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. Both these resources break down the different types of breast surgeries available and procedure details, provide info on FDA-approved implants, explain the costs, and give crucial updates on the latest related news and technologies. Shop around: Find the right doctor. Selecting the right surgeon is the most important part of this process. First, you need to make sure your doctor is legit, i.e. certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, as Dr. Yee is. Don’t be confused by a certification from the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery, which, is not plastic surgery. Plastic surgeons are specifically educated, trained, and certified to perform both cosmetic and reconstructive surgeries of the entire face and body. […]
Over at Byrdie, one woman has written her account of having breast reduction surgery: “I felt like I finally recognized the person looking back at me. I was confident in a way I hadn’t ever been before. It didn’t have as much to do with the way I looked, but more about the way I felt from minute to minute. I didn’t have back pain or annoying marks from my bra straps. I didn’t feel like I had to cover up my body—which was something I had gotten very good at during the years prior.” Plastic surgeons generally agree that their breast reduction patients are their happiest! If you’re having back pain and have large breasts, talk to your primary care doctor about a referral.
After the recent win of deaf contestant Nyle DiMarco on America’s Next Top Model, another woman with Treacher Collins syndrome (a craniofacial anomaly) wrote about her experience auditioning for the show. I applaud her honesty in describing her challenges and frustration with the standards of beauty. “We live in a world of difference, a world that so far, has not often been represented in the modeling and entertainment industries. This prejudice carries over to the professional world, where people with facial disorders want to be accepted and looked at based on our own merits. . . . I remember how the other contestants derided DiMarco because of his deafness, because he lived in a world of silence and was different, because, as they said, he would never fit into the high-stakes world he so aspired to join. With tears in my eyes, I heard his name called and watched his face light up in disbelief and overwhelming happiness when the American Sign Language interpreter translated the announcement of his win.” Treacher Collins is a rare craniofacial syndrome affecting the orbits, midface, ears, and lower jaw. Even though she had several surgeries which are typically recommended for reconstruction, she still […]
We carry the EarWell ear molding device, and it was just profiled on NPR! Between one-fifth and one-third of infants are born with prominent or misfolded ears. Immediately after birth, the cartilage is very flexible, thanks to circulating estrogen left over from pregnancy. The ears are especially malleable. Some misfolded ears unfold on their own shortly after the child is born, but if the issue does not resolve itself within a week, early intervention is advisable. There is a very specific window of time in which treatment with the EarWell device is appropriate: before the child is one month of age. If you miss this window, ear correction will have to wait until the child is old enough to undergo surgery (around age 5 or 6 ). Having surgery is a much more invasive option, with issues of recovery, cost and potential discomfort to consider. What is the EarWell Infant Ear Correction System? The EarWell is a custom-fit plastic molding device. It resembles a “cradle” that adheres around the ear, with retractors that shape the ear’s structure. A special shell fits over the ear and holds all of the components in place. The EarWell device should be worn for six […]
Korean and Japanese cosmetics are becoming more widespread (just check out Sephora!) and especially in California we have a significant Asian, and Asian-American population. Beauty trends are becoming global, and that includes plastic surgery and the ideals patients seek. Here is a great interview with the current president of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (the official group of plastic surgeons trained in cosmetic and reconstructive procedures all over the body) about plastic surgery prevalence and trends in Asia. Changing faces – Dr. David Song I agree with him especially on these points: So many are looking to create a crease in the upper eyelid, creating a crease in the upper eyelid to give the appearance of a softer look. In the past it’s been confused with Asians trying to look Occidental or Caucasian and, quite frankly, is not that at all. Many Asians do not want to look Caucasian; they want to look more like their Asian counterparts. The standard of beauty has become softer features with a crease in the upper eyelid. I think that has been the biggest misconception and I hope you can emphasize that. It’s not Asians trying to look Caucasian; it’s Asians trying […]
One of my friends that I trained in plastic surgery with, specializes in gender reassignment surgery; these procedures require microsurgery, with suture finer than a human hair. This recent article from my alma mater about penis transplant surgery shows how plastic surgeons remain at the forefront of surgical innovation. I think what they do is great and I support them, though I don’t do these surgeries myself.