Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Silicone vs. Saline and other breast questions

The trend among plastic surgeons and patients is toward the softer, more natural silicone gel implants.

50% of implants NOW sold are silicone gel.

The number of gel implants used before the ban was single digits, ie. less than10%.

There is no question they give a softer, more natural look for the most part. This is especially true for women with minimal to no breast tissue.

Breast hardness after augmentation

Every patient who undergoes breast augmentation develops a capsule. The key is to keep the capsule soft and natural.

Why do some breasts get hard?

There are probably many factors, one of which is bacterial contamination in the pocket receiving the implant. A company named TxRxPharma Inc. is developing an anti-biotic sleeve to place around the implant just prior to placement. The anti-biotics in this wrap are tetracycline and rifamycin. In preliminary studies, the capsule formed by the implants wrapped in this special sheet were much softer and more natural.

Perhaps the holy grail for breast augmentation is just around the corner. More to come.

For more information about breast implants, make a visit to my website, Beauty-by-Brueck.com and navigate to any of the pages about breast enhancement.

Thank you

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Saturday, April 26, 2008

If you've had a cosmetic procedure...

...you were in good company, as these just-released 2007 Statistics on Cosmetic Surgery demonstrate:

In 2007, there were 11.7 million surgical and non-surgical procedures performed in the U.S.

18% were surgical

82% were non-surgical

From 2006-2007, cosmetic surgical procedures increased 8%, non-surgical procedures increased 1%.

Top Five Cosmetic Surgical Procedures:

1) Liposuction- 456,828

2) Breast Augmentation-399,440

3) Eyelid Surgery-240,763

4) Abdominoplasty-185,335

5) Breast Reduction-153,087

Top Five Non-surgical Cosmetic Procedures:

1) Botox - 2,775,176;

2) Hyaluronic Acid (Restylane, Juavaderm) - 1,448,716

3) Laser Hair Removal - 1,412,657

4) Microdermabrasion - 829,658

5) IPL Laser - 647,707

Women had 91% of cosmetic procedures.

Cosmetic Procedures by Age Group:

35-50 - 46%

19-34 – 21%

51-64 – 25%

65> - 6%


Americans spent just under $13.2 billion on cosmetic procedures.

Of course, these are national numbers. Statistics for the local Charlotte County, Fort Myers, Bonita, Naples, Marco Island area will be proportionally smaller. Nevertheless, it appears that large numbers of your neighbors and friends are taking advantage of the rejuvenating possibilities with cosmetic surgical and non-surgical procedures.

As always, however, anyone you know - including yourself - should never undergo a cosmetic procedure without a thorough consultation with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Why Plastic Surgery Board Certification? Because many doctors receive Board Certification in other specialties. While they may perform plastic surgery procedures, they do not have the specialized training that comes with Board Certification in the specialty of Plastic Surgery.

There are several Board Certified Plastic Surgeons in Southwest Florida. I encourage you to consult with one of them before going forward with any procedure. I offer a complimentary, no charge, no obligation consultation to any patient considering my practice for a cosmetic procedure.

You can visit my website, Beauty-by-Brueck, for more information and use the secure, confidential "Ask the Doctor" form to ask a specific question, or call my office at 239-939-5233 to arrange an appointment. Ask for Dr. Brueck or my aesthetic assistant, Judy.

Thank you.

Dr. Robert J. Brueck MD FACS

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Sunday, April 6, 2008

What happens when laser meets liposuction?

Almost universally we are all concerned about our body shape. For some it’s their hips, or for us men, our “love handles”. Recently, several people have called me regarding a new laser liposuction procedure called, “SmartLipo.”

It has been touted on TV shows and magazines as the “new and better” trend in lipo. But, is it really?

Much of the hype of SmartLipo is for marketing purposes. Everyone wants to be the first kid on the block with the latest toy or gimmick.

This, plus the media hype is designed to get patients flocking to the plastic surgeon’s door. But, in reality, is it any better or more effective in giving us our “perfect’ shape?

The premise behind SmartLipo is to use a laser to liquefy the fat and make it easier to remove.

The SmartLipo laser was developed by a Brazilian plastic surgeon, who in the late 90’s, teamed up with a company, Cynosure, to refine it and bring it to the market place.

One of the supposed benefits of SmartLipo is that it causes skin retraction. The FDA has NOT approved Cynosure to use the claim in marketing SmartLipo. The company currently is doing clinical trials to see if this is the case. This is very controversial. Some physicians say it does and others say it doesn’t.

The machine costs around $150,000 so if I buy one, I will want to tout its benefits because I have to pay for it.

The cost of SmartLipo is generally more than conventional tumescent liposuction. Surprise! Surprise!

Another claim is that it can be done under local and hence is safer. Conventional liposuction can also be done under local. It all depends, with either technique, how much liposuction you are doing. So a word of caution is needed – as always, “Buyer beware” of unsubstantiated claims.

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