Archive for September, 2010

From EuropeWhat’s New in Cosmetic Surgery

Thursday, September 23rd, 2010

I have returned from the 11th Annual meeting of the Austrian Academy of Cosmetic Surgery and, as expected, it was a wonderful experience.
First a bit about Croatia:
Croats speak Croatian. Ok, OK it seems obvious, but … worth noting. Also many do not speak English and despite communications difficulties, these are the friendliest and most helpful people that I have met in my travels. At one point when my wife and I were lost on a journey to the Mestrovic museum we had no less than 3 different people assist us with a combination of finger pointing and maps we showed them. The Adriatic is a most beautiful sea (though not so much as Sweden) and the countryside is most beautiful (though not so much as Sweden). The food is excellent and I had a lot of risotto and octopus though I honestly think we probably should not eat anything possessing more arms than we have. Add to that some lovely vineyards with excellent wines and a-capella music that can tear your heart out, and you have a vacation experience comparable to many cities in Europe.
I promised to tell you what is new and what is not on my return. What is new did surprise me and before I go further I will issue the compulsory warning that these procedures are not available in the United States and may never be available. With that admonition here goes:
Hyluronic acid augmentation of buttocks and breast. A new product called Hyacorp is a cross-linked hyaluronic acid filler which holds up well in large volumes. The results I viewed were remarkable and equivalent to the Brazilian Butt Lift in thin women. Doctors who have used the product reported duration of effect lasting up to 18 months. Surprisingly the product is very affordable with equivalent costs more than 50% below fillers in the United States (though our fillers are used in small quantities).
The second introduction of new technology involved vaginal rejuvenation of the pre-menopausal woman. Unlike American literature which focuses on cosmetic rejuvenation, this work focuses on physiologic and functional rejuvenation. Dr. Adrian Gaspar, an OB-GYN associate professor is pioneering this work using low level fractional laser resurfacing of the mucosa of the vagina. He presented microscopic evidence of marked improvement after the procedure. When I spoke with him afterward he commented that with Viagra extending the sexual life of males well beyond historic benchmarks there is a need for women to be sexually functional or we risk a societal rift that could have unintended consequences on the preservation of the marital state. This is really not a trivial matter and his work is very profound.
Lastly, the meeting surprised me with the almost unanimous impression of all of the presenters that low energy absorption therapy, whether it be lasers, ultrasound, or radio-frequency energy can rejuvenate tissue with minimal down-time or consequences. My own presentations involved the use of energy absorption and the use of bio-stimulants like hyaluronic acid and lactic acid to rejuvenate tissue of the entire body. This was echoed by research and experience in most of the European countries and even a panel discussion which was structured to promote controversy among the presenters and had the opposite effect of endorsing these concepts for the future.
All-in-all it was a wonderful trip and a great meeting and now I return to work and the pleasures of home.