Women and men are streaming to the plastic surgeon’s office, with statistics showing 14.2 million cosmetic minimally-invasive procedures performed in 2015 alone.
While physicians may be somewhat familiar with these aesthetic treatments, there is a growing list of treatments and products that are available today, reports Dr. Mark McKenna, a medical doctor and entrepreneur who regularly blogs about medical breakthroughs. He provides an update on non-surgical aesthetic treatments that patients are most likely to request.
Botox isn’t the only option today. Three wrinkle-reducing injectables, Botox, Dysport, and Xeomin, are all FDA-approved and can eliminate deep forehead lines, frown lines between the brows, and crow’s feet at the corners of the eyes, explains Dr. Mark McKenna.
These injectables take only minutes to apply, and work by relaxing the muscles that result in wrinkles. These injectables can take years off the patient’s appearance, with effects lasting three to four months.
Soft Tissue (Dermal) Fillers
Fillers work to immediately smooth out wrinkles and facial creases, including frown lines. A plastic surgeon has several formulas of dermal fillers available, each specifically designed to treat facial lines and restore volume under the eyes, across the cheeks, and along the jawline.
All skin types and ethnicities can safely benefit from dermal fillers. The results are visible immediately, are very natural looking, and will last from six months to a year.
This non-invasive treatment reverses the early signs of aging and fine lines. Microneedling involves several tiny needles that make microscopic pricks on the skin’s surface, which then trigger the tissue’s natural healing response. By regenerating the body’s natural collagen supply, the skin’s youthful elasticity can be restored, reports Dr. Mark McKenna.
Only topical anesthesia is required with micro-needling, and patients can resume their usual activities the same day. This noninvasive procedure will require three to five sessions, spaced four weeks apart.
Double Chin Elimination
Kybella®, a Deoxycholic Acid-based medication, is the first FDA-approved injectable treatment to eliminate the double chin. Kybella permanently eliminates troublesome submental fat, as it destroys fat cells which are then naturally eliminated by the body, says Dr. Mark McKenna.
Three to six sessions, each with up to 50 tiny injections, are necessary for optimum results. Results are permanent, and no further sessions are required once the series is complete.
Ultherapy is an FDA approved device for skin tightening. The device delivers ultrasound energy into the deeper layers of the skin which stimulates new collagen – tightening skin and improving skin texture and thickness. Ultherapy does not affect the skin’s superficial layer, so there is no crusting or skin discoloration, and it is safe for all skin types, reports Dr. Mark McKenna.
Chemical Facial Peel
Chemical peels have evolved and improved greatly over the years. Peels are one of the most popular and easily customizable procedures for skin rejuvenation. Today’s peels are composed of numerous rejuvenating agents and restorative acids that can benefit nearly any patient.
The peels range from mild skin refreshing formulas to deep skin resurfacing procedures, capable of halting early signs of aging or reversing sun damage. These procedures yield vibrant, healthy skin with results lasting for many months.
Microdermabrasion can eliminate the top layer of dead, dry, damaged skin, revealing fresh, youthful tissue. Numerous blemishes can be easily eliminated with microdermabrasion, including fine lines, crow’s feet, hyperpigmentation, scars, and facial blemishes, says Dr. Mark McKenna.
Microdermabrasion is much gentler on the skin than traditional dermabrasion methods, and provides dramatic skin rejuvenation – as patients enjoy a soft, smooth, glowing complexion through this simple office treatment.
Fractional Laser Resurfacing
Fractional Laser Resurfacing is an innovative use to rejuvenate dry, aging facial tissues. The Fraxel Laser creates thousands of very small thermal zones along the targeted skin, which allows fresh tissue to replace wrinkled and discolored areas, reports Dr. Mark McKenna.
Patients enjoy a fresh, vibrant appearance that can last for a year or more. Fraxel is excellent for treating scars, areas of hyperpigmentation, fine lines, and sun damaged skin. Three and six Fraxel Laser Resurfacing sessions are necessary for optimal results.
Photofacials with Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) can effectively eliminate freckles, dark spots, and sun damage to reverse the signs of early aging, and can also benefit patients with rosacea.
An IPL treatment causes blood vessels and collagen stores to constrict, which eliminates redness, and creates a smoother, more even appearance. The treatment is not painful, and takes only minutes in the office – with no downtime. IPL can be used almost anywhere on the body including the face, arms, back, and hands.
Multiple therapies are available to correct scars due to acne, illness, surgery, or trauma. The treatment will be customized to the individual patient and level of correction required—and treatment options include topical therapies, laser treatments, and steroid injections which can be extremely beneficial, explains Dr. Mark McKenna. When scarring is thick or extremely discolored, surgeons can provide more invasive scar procedures.
Laser Hair Removal
Laser hair removal is a safe, nonsurgical procedure to permanently reduce unwanted hair on the face, chest, legs, and bikini line. Using a safe, handheld laser, the aesthetic professional can easily and permanently eliminate hair almost anywhere on the body. Six to eight laser removal treatments will be required for the best results.
Plastic surgeons always emphasize that these procedures are a patient’s personal choice and should not be done to meet someone else’s expectations or to try to fit an ideal image, says Dr. Mark McKenna. Because it is elective, cosmetic surgery is usually not covered by health insurance.
About Dr. Mark McKenna:
Mark McKenna, MD, MBA is a practicing physician and forward-thinking entrepreneur. He is licensed in Surgery and Medicine by the Georgia and Florida State Board of Medical Examiners. Dr. McKenna is a graduate of Tulane University Medical School, and completed his medical training at Tulane University Hospital and Clinic. He helped with relief efforts after Hurricane Katrina, and now resides with his family in Atlanta, GA, where he is launching OVME, a technology enabled medical aesthetic company that is reinventing elective healthcare.