Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Plastic Surgery Tax Revisited

I am sure you heard last week that the Senate is once again trying to pass a "5% plastic surgery tax". We did a blog entry this summer on the same topic and based on what is being proposed now our stance remains the same. In my opinion this becomes an issue that is discriminatory against woman, because 90% of plastic surgery patients are women. I find that in Dr. Walden's office most of the woman we see that are seeking plastic surgery are middle class hard working women from 20-50 years of age. Plastic surgery is no longer a service that is just for the uber-wealthy. Most patients save for a long time to get the amount of money needed for their procedure. They are well researched, well informed, and ready to achieve their ultimate goal of surgery. The argument is always the same.....what is another 5% when you are already paying thousands?? I'll tell you....another thousand dollars is a BIG deal to most people and could make the difference between having and not having an elective surgery. Another important thing to consider is with all the popularity of "overseas plastic surgery", there will be a huge surge in this trend and essentially take away business revenue from the United States as people flee to other countries to save money. This will only decrease the quality of medical care Americans will get as other countries do not adhere to the same medical standards the United States follows.

Dr. Walden was recently on Fox News' Neil Cavuto show this week discussing this hot topic. This is one interview you don't want to miss!!

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!!!!

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Results Speak for Themselves

It's no secret that Carrie Prejean had her Miss California crown taken away earlier this year after making controversial statements regarding gay marriage, as well as becoming the latest celebrity to have a private sex tape go public. Then there was the whole debate as to whether or not she should pay the pageant back for the $5,200 they shelled out for the breast implants she requested to better her chances at winning the national pageant title. The pageant people must have agreed it was a good idea since they gave her the money in the first place. Anyway, with so much attention put on who should pay for silicone enhancements I feel not enough focus was put on how fantastic she looks. Whoever did her implants chose a nice size to match her petite frame while still creating a sexy, enhanced version of the former Miss California. She seemed to walk a little bit taller, exuding more confidence than she did pre-augmentation. In my opinion that is what good plastic surgery is all about! A well proportioned "tweak" to the outside can create inner happiness that is often overlooked by society. It's really a shame she ever opened her mouth in the first place because she is a truly beautiful young woman. She has certainly proved to not be a role model for young girls everywhere however, I do hope girls of all ages feel comfortable making changes (by board certified physicians) to their appearance that will ultimately make them enjoy life more. So the pageant might be out a few thousand dollars, and will likely think twice about paying for contestants plastic surgery in the future, but don't worry beauty queens...there is always care credit!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Is Sammy Comfortable in his New Skin?

Baseball season might be over folks, but if Sammy Sosa was looking to lighten is skin-tone than he hit a home-run with the bleaching cream he admitted to using after debuting a significantly lighter complexion at a recent event in Las Vegas. Sound familiar?? How can you not think of the recently deceased King of Pop when a story like this arises. Unlike Michael Jackson, Sammy Sosa is not claiming any skin disorder or medical necessity for the use of a bleaching product. Is this simply a case of wanting what we can't have naturally? I am the first to admit I reach for the tanning cream when getting ready for a big event, and I would be lying if I said I didn't wish my curly hair was straight. I thought Sammy Sosa's complexion looked great pre-bleach and I wonder if people with naturally darker complexions think the same about me after I've been bathing in 'build-a-tan' for a few days. My caveat to Sammy is to not become the 'man in the mirror' (pun intended) scrutinizing every feature, and drastically altering his appearance through surgery. Let's keep our fingers crossed that he doesn't get carried away so we can remember Sammy for his home-runs not his changing face.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Not so "Real Housewive of Atlanta"

Kim Zolciak one of "The Real Housewives of Atlanta" is proud of her not so real parts. In a recent article in "In Touch" magazine Kim is quoted as saying this about being mostly artificial "I just don't think there's anything wrong with it. Some cosmetic enhancement is obvious. A lot of times, the people who aren't talking about it are the ones who look horrible. I do Botox. I've had my boobs done twice. I started getting Botox when I was 25 for migraines. I recommend that to anybody. And VelaShape, I don't know if it shrinks you, but it keeps you tone and taut." Good for you Kim for embracing her new self and being proud of the work she's had done! No matter how you view it cosmetic surgery is a very personal choice and can do wonders to enhance all the little and not so little things that vex us about our own personal beauty. I think we are lucky to live in a world that offers us so many ways to improve ourselves in any way we see fit.

Can We Skip a Mammogram??

This blog entry is a bit different from my usual blog fare here, but I think it is important to side step the fun stuff occasionally to stay informed about topics that can be life saving!! We just left the month of October which is Breast Cancer Awareness month, but we as women should make every month Breast Cancer Awareness month and continue to stay informed 365 days a year!

The New York Times ran an interesting article last week in regards to ongoing data of the benefits of mammograms. For years physicians have been telling their patients that once you turn 40 you should be getting yearly mammograms to screen for breast cancer. That timetable is pretty standard unless you have a family history for breast cancer or are a carrier of the BRCA gene, in which they might even suggest mammograms every 6 months. Now, there are physicians that are going on record to state that this may not be as necessary as once thought. Dr. Laura Esserman, a breast surgeon from the University of California, San Francisco, has written an article on this ongoing debate in The Journal of the American Medical Association. In the article she discusses the issue of "who is helped and who is not" by such frequent mammography. Dr. Esserman says that women over 70 can stop being screened, due to the fact that in this particular age bracket tumors caused by breast cancer tend to be very slow growing and in most cases are not likely to be the cause of death. On the other hand woman in the age group of 50-70 there is good evidence that screening can reduce the risk of death from breast cancer by 20 percent to 30 percent. So this all sounds good right? Well, here is the gray area....what about the woman from 40-50? This is the group where the heat of the debate begins. Many feel that woman in this "gray area" are being "over treated" and "over diagnosed", by being exposed to excess radiation and unnecessary biopsies. She feels that the evidence benefiting screening women in that age bracket is lacking. Some physicians who agree with Dr. Esserman feel this can lead to a larger margin of false diagnosis and just additional stress on the patient.

Dr. Walden was on Fox News this weekend discussing this important topic, and I thought there were some great points made. First of all is know yourself! In other words, if you are in your 40's and you are post menopausal and on hormones, or if you have extremely dense breasts it is probably wise to make sure you are screened regularly. As always, Dr. Walden suggests that you follow the  current recommendations of the American Cancer Society (yearly mammography one you hit age 40) and your personal physician first and foremost. BUT, it is always important to keep an ear to the ground and pay attention to the ongoing research on this topic. Anything that is going to keep us ladies ahead of this terrible disease is a step in the right direction, and I really believe an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure! So, until we find the cure for breast cancer let's always keep ourselves "in the know". Take a look at the Fox interview featuring Dr. Walden below.

Have a great Monday!!!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Hell's Kitchen Chef Gordon Ramsay Gets Stuck

Gordon Ramsay has undergone a very popular cosmetic procedure to fill in the trademark lines on his chin.  He says he took the advice of Botox fan Simon Cowell, who advised that, if he wanted to increase his star power stateside, he might want to polish his rugged features.

"Simon Cowell suggested that, now I'm a success in America, I should do something. So I had a filler put under the deep crevices," he told the British weekly Radio Times. "It hurt." He spent around $650 on an off-the-shelf filler like Restylane, which can be injected underneath crevices to plump them up.
(Restylane and Juvederm are hyaluronic acid fillers that help to plump wrinkles and add volume to lips, the laugh lines, and cheeks).  He will apparently need to get the procedure a couple of times a year to keep up the smooth-chin look, according to reports. (Source: New York Post)

Interestingly, his decision to get fillers came a year after his publicist laughed off reports that the quick-tempered chef had any work done. "Gordon would be the first person to take the piss out of anyone that has had surgery," the publicist said at the time.  "My mother said they were smile lines," Ramsay told the magazine this week. "I could deal with that at 21, but not at 42."

Tough-guy Ramsay remarked on how uncomfortable the procedure was, but -- on the pain scale of cosmetic procedures these injections are relatively well-tolerated, with needle sticks causing transient pain. Local anesthetic blocks like the type you get when you visit the dentist and numbing cream applied to the skin can help take the sting out of the needle sticks.

Here you can see me on Inside Edition dishing on soft tissue fillers and what to expect as far as downtime and recovery after they are done!

Arnold Schwarzenegger Signs Donda West Plastic Surgery Law in California

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger recently signed the Donda West Law, which requires anyone undergoing plastic surgery in the state to receive a mandatory physical examination first, according to the Los Angeles Times. Hopefully this will set a precedent and other states will follow suit in the name of patient safety.

The bill was written in response to the death in 2007 of Kanye West's mother, Donda, 58, who died of complications related to cosmetic surgery. Dr. West's family reportedly believe that a pre-op physical exam would have uncovered coronary artery disease. West underwent several plastic surgery procedures (breast lift and tummy tuck with liposuction reportedly) without medical clearance, and her coronary disease and postoperative factors are believed to have contributed to her death.

Dr. West's niece, Yolanda Anderson, was one of the primary movers behind the bill, which also requires a mandatory written clearance before surgery. Schwarzenegger vetoed the first pass of the bill in February 2008, then signed it on Monday after it was resubmitted this past February.
"Sometimes patients may think they are well enough for cosmetic surgery, but in reality are not," said Assemblywoman Wilmer Amina Carter, one of the leading sponsors of the bill. "This bill will potentially save lives."

After his infamous run-in with Taylor Swift at the VMAs last month, Kanye West told talk-show host Jay Leno that his mother would have been disappointed in his behavior. West also said that the pain from his mother's death still haunts him and that after two years of nonstop touring, recording and performing.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Who's that girl?

I was looking at some pictures in a magazine recently when I came across this picture. It took me a couple of minutes to register who it was. At first glance I thought, wow that is a pretty woman, and then a second after that it hit me...that's Nicole Kidman! Always a beautiful women in my book. She is just so elegant and her features are so refined but this picture threw me. I do admit I still think she is just lovely even though it is fairly apparent that she has had some filler work done to her beautiful face. Plumper cheeks and much fuller lips and even a little Botox. I have seen some other, not so flattering pictures of her post procedure, that were pretty blatant overuse of products but here someone got it right. She looks fresh-faced and healthy. Based solely on this photo she is a work of art. She looks very much like she did back when she was just starting out as an actress in her mid 20's. Look at these pictures and guess which one is the recent one. You will only be able to tell by the lips but everything else looks as youthful as it ever has. Good job whoever the plastic surgeon was here. It is a fact that as we age our lips become smaller and we loose the plumpness in our face. From my perspective and it could just be mine, I think she looks just great. Finally here is an example of plastic surgery done well. Recapturing a little of her youth while boosting her amazing features in a natural way. Really nicely done. This is how it is supposed to be done and when it is done right it gives us all hope of finding that ever elusive fountain of youth.