Update on Laser and Plasma skin tightening

We have now had the newest technique in skin tightening for about 10 months with dozens of cases being done.  The new Renuvion Plasma (formerly called J-Plasma) has proven to be well worth the investment as it has taken our skin tightening at lipo to a whole new level.  However, it has not completely replaced our laser tightening but has added a tool that works in synergy with each other.  To review, the laser that we have used for years and still do accomplishes skin tightening by doing micro damage to the back of the skin. As the skin heals, new collagen protein is laid down and contracts giving you a lifting and tightening of the skin during the ensuing weeks post lipo. The plasma system works on the support structures that attaches the skin to the underlying abdominal wall and in essence helps to pull the skin tighter by working on the deeper support fibers.  It also works on the skin itself but in a different fashion than the laser.  I have noticed that the plasma also can improve and slightly thicken the skin in patients with thin wrinkled skin also.  Case in point.  I have had several patients with really loose skin on the thighs that on examination was also thin and crepe like.  Previously in patients like this I noticed only a slight tightening with laser.  Now with the plasma system I am noticing a marked improvement to the quality of the skin and an actual thickening of the crepe like skin, giving a great skin lift and improved appearance. With added laser tightening in select areas on cases such as this it is giving us a better lift and tightening than we achieved with laser alone.  On the neck we are able to tighten all the way to the collar bone and out to the sides more than we could with laser.  In many patients it is helping us acheive a neck lift look without the cutting required in a formal neck lift.

I can say without a doubt that the Renuvion Plasma is a wonderful enhancement to our LipoSculpting program as it is proving to be a valuable addition to the Vaser and Laser we have overlapped for years.  We are proud to be the only provider in South Carolina to embrace this cutting edge technololgy and only one of about 800 physicians in the US and Canada that are providers of this ground breaking innovation.

Dr. ODell

Cosmetic Stuff for Men

It’s June, that first month of summer and the month for Father’s Day. That’s June 17, by the way. So guys…It’s time to take a look in the mirror and think about looking good. Your ladies know how. Getting Botox or fillers to even out the signs of facial aging, getting slimmer and shapelier isn’t just for the women. It needs to be a guy thing too. It’s so not fair that we can have wrinkles and depressions on our faces and it’s called “character lines,” but on the ladies is called old. We don’t need to let the norms of the past define us. Guys need to look smoother and younger too. Now we do have a lot of dudes who get Botox on a regular basis and get fillers when needed, but it’s a very small percentage to the ladies. Come on guys, it’s just about the smallest needle on a syringe you can get without calling it a wire. I promise it’s not that bad, you can do it. Why let her have a smooth forehead face while you have the angry “11’s” between your eyes and garden furrows on your forehead. Ouch. You just made everyone think about why your wife of 30 years is hanging with the old dude.

 

And the shape of guys. Think LipoSculpting. Your ladies do. After trying to eliminate that pooch or those baggy legs with exercise that doesn’t completely work, so many women come to Genesis to get that loose skin tightened and those difficult fatty areas reduced. Men can usually just diet for a short while and maybe increase exercise to get slim again. It works great compared to women of the same age who can’t loose it that fast. However, men of a certain age begin a slow down in metabolism and can’t drop it as readily as they used to. Enter Genesis LipoSculpting. We can get that fat off your belly and in many cases enhance the outline of the abdominal muscles. With the addition of our Renuvion Plasma tightening system we are seeing a faster and more efficient tightening in men as compared with laser alone. It won’t help a true “beer gut” but will help shape your abdomen and love handles to give you a healthier look.

Man boobs, officially called Gynecomastia is something we do a lot of at Genesis. Many men were obese as kids and did not loose that chest fat as they matured and got more muscular. Some men were ok as kids but got obese as adults and did not loose the chest fat as they lost back to a normal weight. Also we see some men who developed gynecomastia as a result of performance enhancing steroids they took for workouts. All can be treated and reduced with our Lipo technique to get you out of having to wear 3 t-shirts on a summer day to hide your chest.

And guys….aren’t you tired of the flat “no butt” look. Yeah, your neck, spine and tail are all on the same line. News flash…your rear end helps to hold up your pants when you stoop or bend over. Without a butt, yikes…didn’t want to see that. The ladies get fat transfer to the butt to look better in jeans, so why can’t you. Believe me, she may say you don’t need it but she’s thinking “oh yes please”. Nothing wrong with a sexy trunk.

So…don’t let macho get in the way of thinking that looking better and having a better shape is not manly. Believe me, she will be glad you changed your attitude about cosmetic treatments. Happy Father’s Day

Botox to stop that excessive sweating (hyperhydrosis)

Summer’s coming soon with increased temps and increased sweating.  If you have been suffering with excessive sweating during these cold months or when in a tense situation then you may be a candidate for Botox treatment to the underarms or other areas where excessive persperation occurs.  Yes, it’s the same Botox used in the face except it can be used to lessen the excessive sweating (hyperhydrosis) that so many people of all ages experience.  I recently had a young lady with marked sweating of the underarms and plams of her hands.  After injection of Botox into the arm pit and the palmer surface of her hands, the excessive underarm sweating was reduced by 85% and her palm sweating went completely away.  It can also be used in the bottom of the foot for those individuals with excessive foot sweating.

Botox works in these areas by  reducing the contraction of the very tiny muscles in the sweat gland that contract to force sweat through the pores.  By injecting every centimeter or so,

dozens of the sweat pores are affected and reduce the excessive output from the glands.  Botox does wear off over time but I have noticed a good longevity of effect on the sites treated.  It may need to be repeated every 4-6 months to get a longer lasting affect.  I do numb the arm pits or other areas with a numbing cream so that the sticks are not felt.

If you are ruining blouse after blouse or shirt after shirt due to uncontrolled sweat poring from your pits, then this treatment is for you.  It only takes about an hour including numbing time but can be well worth your effort to eleminate that embarssing sweating.

Sweating is normal and necessary to maintain normal body temperature.  Excessive sweating in a cool room or without exercise is not necessary for anything except embarassment and aggravation.  Botox could be an answer to that problem.

Sweat less.

Dr. ODell

Too many Carbs, Too much weight

 

In we ring the New Year with hopes and expectations and lots of resolutions for 2018. Some we will keep, some we won’t, and some we completely fail at doing. One resolution that needs to be on your list for 2018 is an absolute resolve to reduce carbohydrate intake for the coming year. Unless you are working out several hours a day, running, or work in a demanding physical job, YOU ARE KILLING YOURSELF WITH EXCESS CARBS.

First of all, what are carbohydrates? Carbohydrates are a necessary food group that provides fairly instant energy to the body for normal metabolism and daily activities. Therefore, it is a necessary part of your diet, but in moderation. Carbs consist of breads, cereals, sugar, everything made with sugar (including sodas and sweet tea), potatoes, rice, and pasta just to name a few. Carbs as I stated provide the energy for metabolism and the breakdown of protein in your diet. However, in most of our normal sedentary life styles very little carbs are required to drive that metabolism. As a matter of fact some studies show, as little 600 calories per day are required to run the basics of your daily function. On average as little as 1500-1800 calories is enough for a moderately active person. Now on to the problem. Look at how many calories you intake just in one day. Most everyone averages about 3000+ calories of daily food and drink intake. If you are not active, and I’m not talking about moving your chair around the office, you are going to store at least half or more of those calories. That storage is called FAT. Now repeat this intake day in and day out and you can see why fat accumulation can occur and why the obesity rates are climbing rapidly all over the US. In fact, SC is now 12th on the list of the most obese states in the US. To our credit that is a change from 8th the year before. (Mississippi is #1)

Obesity has been classified as a disease and excess carbohydrate intake has been pegged as one of the main causes. With the almost exponential increase in obesity rates over the years there has been a parallel increase in Type 2 diabetes where the size of the body and the calorie intake outstrips the ability of the pancreas to produce enough insulin to metabolize the sugars. This leads to more requirements for medicine to increase the insulin output. Ongoing elevated blood sugars can then lead to an increase in heart and vascular disease resulting in poor circulation to the extremities and eventual numbness and possible loss of a limb.

Obesity appears in some studies to have a negative effect on cancer risk, recurrence, and mortality. In a position statement by the American Society of Clinical Oncology as many as 84,000 cancer diagnoses each year are attributed to obesity with implications of 15-20% direct mortality related to obesity. There has been a direct link to an increase in breast cancer due to obesity.  As it relates to orthopedics and joint problems, THE KNEE AND THE HIP JOINT WERE NOT DESIGNED TO CARRY SEVERAL HUNDRED POUNDS and, therefore, are prone to wear out earlier in life.

What can be done? Understand that Carbs are the most addicting food group. Simple carbs have a way to drive your appetite center to want to eat more and order more food. That good smelling bread that is put on your table at the restaurant can drive your appetite to order more food.  As fat builds up, a hormone in the fat called Ghrelin can further drive the appetite center to crave more and more food. See the endless cycle? Control is not easy. When going on a weight loss diet the hardest thing to do over the first week or two is to not eat carbs. Once that time frame has past it seems most patients aren’t grabbing for the carbs.

Drinks have carbs and count in the overall calorie intake. Many patients think drinking several sodas daily doesn’t count. A 12-ounce regular soda has 135-150 calories, all from carbs. A 20-ounce soda has 250. Drink 2 or 3 a day and you are at 300 -750 calories of that total intake. Add some sweet tea (usually 120 plus calories per glass) and you may exceed any recommended total daily intake for food and drink.

It’s a New Year, a new beginning. Make determinations that an obese life does not have to happen to you. Stop the Carbohydrate poisoning that is ruining your life. Look for ways to decrease your carb intake and take advantage of every opportunity to eat smaller portions and healthier choices. If you don’t exercise, don’t commit to a gym that will only be a memory in a month. Start small by short walks where you live. Park away from the door at work. Take the stairs at work or at church instead of the elevator. Do multiple small things each day and then work toward a longer walk or workout. Most of all commit to be healthy. Get the grilled chicken without the bun, use the vinaigrette dressing instead of the Ranch and don’t get fries with anything. Water is good too especially with a little lemon squeeze. If you must get dessert, only a bite or two will do. Remember, GET LEAN IN ’18.

 

Live lean, Live happy

 

New plasma energy for skin tightening and resurfacing

Every year it seems that new technology emerges in the field of aesthetics and lipo suction.  I always listen to the sales people and read what they have but take a critical view of each new device that comes out as many of them are a re-make or a combination of older devises.  Last year in 2017 I started looking at a completely new method for skin tightening with lipo that also can be used for facial resurfacing.  I glanced at it at first then saw a presentation on it at a national meeting on lipo and fat transfer.  Wow, a new game changer was on the market.  After spending some time with one of the pioneer users I am amazed at what it can do.  Presently it is called J-Plasma but soon will be marketed as Renuvion. 

What makes it unique?  The Bovie corporation who have made coagulation units for the OR for over 50 years was able to combine Radio-frequency energy with Helium to produce a cold plasma stream that is shown to tighten skin and also resurface facial skin giving an almost “face lift ” appearance….all without any surgery.  Radio frequency energy has been used alone in several devices for years for external skin tightening.  You would come in, get a 20 minute treatment with the device and repeat in a few days.  Some skin tightening was evident but in my opinion was not great especially in larger patients.  Now Bovie has taken that energy and as I said used it in a stream of Helium gas and created a plasma beam.  This was first used for precision cutting in open surgery cases but is now being utilized under the skin during liposuction and giving an almost instant contraction of the skin that continues for several weeks. I am seeing skin laxity decrease at a much faster pace than what I was seeing with using the laser for skin tightening.

Another use of this technology is to go over the skin (after numbing) to resurface the facial skin and tighten it.  Before and after pictures are showing stunning results.  It is necessary to have about 7-10 days of down time with the facial resurface as the skin has to grow back after the resurfacing.  The doctor I trained with told me he has completely given up doing face and neck lifts since starting use of this plasma technology.  It’s that good.

Genesis is once again proud to be the first in South Carolina to incorporate this new technology into our lipo and facial program.  Staying on the cutting edge with the right devices and treatments is what we always want to bring to our patients.  We will be posting more info on our web site soon.  Again, Bovie corporation will be changing the J-Plasma name to Renuvion in the next couple of months and you should be seeing more ads and info about it as they begin to promote this platform in multiple magazines and on television.

In the meantime…..stay healthy……stay beautiful

Dr. ODell

Labiaplasty

As more awareness on facial and body cosmetic looks has been trending over the last several years there has also been more interest in the functionality and appearence of the labia minora/majora.  While most women don’t really give the appearence of the labia a second thought there are a lot of women who have been suffering with enlarged and mis-shapen labia. Sometimes the enlargement occurred just by going through puberty.  Sometimes it occurred  after childbirth where the labial swelling of pregnancy did not retract completely.  Most of the time these women complain that it is affecting their appearence in tight fitting garments or causing pain with activity and sexual intercourse. So many patients are embarassed by this and afraid to bring it up to their doctor.  However, many avenues of help are now available to give you a more normal appearance and to reduce enlarged labia that may be getting uncomfortably pulled when walking, running or with sex.  At Genesis we are able to reduce the labia both surgically or with our FemiLift laser.  Which one used depends on the size and irregularity of the labia.  With minor uniform enlargement and/or pigmentation, an attachment to the FemiLift can be used to shrink the tissue by using the same laser used to tighten the vagina in the FemiLift.  A tightening of the labia and fading of any pigmented tissue then occurs over the next couple of weeks.  There is no discomfort or downtime associated with this technique.  We do suggest 3 treatments a month apart to get the best result.

However, we are seeing many patients who have marked appendage like projections of the labial tissue that need surgical repair.  This is done in our GYN O.R. at Genesis using oral sedation and local numbing.  Either the wedge resection or an edge resection technique can be utilized depending on the amount and location of the tissue needing to be removed.  Most patients notice discomfort for the first day or so but are quickly back to light activity and even work in a few days.

There is no need to be embarassed by your bottom.  Labial deformity is a common problem in most women.  If it is causing a decrease in your self-esteem, embarassment with how you look in tighter pants, or pain with movement or intercourse then it’s time to do something about it.  We can help at Genesis.  Give us a call for a consultation where we can determine what would give you the best look and functionality.

Be well

Dr. ODell

 

FemiLift ..an excellent treatment for vaginal dryness, laxity, and incontinence

Well, it’s been a year since we started using Femilift for Vaginal Laxity, mild urinary incontinance, and vaginal dryness.  The results have been truly AMAZING.  I first blogged on this revolutionaary devise a little over a year ago and I am happy to say that there has been virtually 100% satisfaction to date.  We have had a mixture of patients come in with single complaints to many with multiple complaints listed above.  One patient who had dryness from menopause could not use the vaginal creams due to irritation nor take the oral treatment due to extreme side effects.  Vaginal lubricants burned so badly she could not enjoy sex.  After one treatment she noted a 40% improvement in her symptoms after about 2-3 weeks.  After the second treatment it was 90+% better to the point that she had a return of vaginal moisture and no further burning.  Multiple patients treated for the minor incontinence are reporting similar results with no leaking on running or other activities that required a pad before treatment.  All patients have experienced a tightenting of vaginal caliber and more fulfillment with sex for both her and her partner.  I know it sounds too good to be true but it has been 100 % satifaction reported by all my treated patients.  Now if you are having bulging from the vaginal opening with incomplete emptying of the bladder or a large amount of leakage then this may not be the cure as some of the more severe cases may need surgery.  That can be determined by a simple pelvic exam.

Femilift takes about 5 minutes to do and can be done over your lunch break or even after work on the way home.  No anesthesia is required although a numbing cream can be used if desired.  However, to date, no one felt that numbing was necessary as any discomfort was described as a slight pinch on one or two pulses of the laser. ( we usually do 30-70 pulses depending on the vaginal depth).  There is no down time afterward.  Yes, it takes three treatments a month apart to get the complete lift and tightening but most patients are reporting that they are very satisfied after two sessions.  The third one, I feel, will give you greater longevity of the treatment.

Femilift uses a fraxelated CO2 laser that divides the laser beam into about 16 small pin dots. These small pin dot lasers make micro damage into the collagen support layer of the vagina and also stimulate lining cell growth in the vagina.  As healing and new collagen is formed there is a thickening of the lining cells and also a thikening and lift to the collagen support of the vagina.  This results in an improvement of the vaginal looseness and a thickening and lift around the bladder stem or urethra that corrects the minor incontinence.  Because of a return of normal lining cells or epithelium an increase in vaginal lubrication is evident.

Again I am so amazed at this revolutionary treatment that is so easily performed in the office at Genesis.  If you are having any of the triad… vaginal laxity, minor leakage, vaginal dryness…then call us for more information and a consult about Femilift.  Our number is 843-669-2220.

Stay healthy

Dr. ODell

Stretch marks..New treatment options

Stretch marks…YUK.  Whether it’s from pregnancy or weight gain and loss they are there, they are ugly, and they need to go.  Over my career I have seen all the hopes and creams come and go to get rid of the stretch marks.  Using various food creams didn’t work, Liebfraumilch cream was a bust, Accutane was tried and failed, Various external lasers and other energy sources did not work either. Then you tried hours at the gym only to find your waist line got some better but the stretch marks didn’t budge much.  Stretch marks have been an everlasting challenge in aesthetic medicine.  Stretch marks are nothing more than markedly damaged skin protein (collagen) that has stretched beyond the normal ability to heal.

Now there is a better solution.  About 5 years ago I attended the national meeting of the American Society of Cosmetic Physicians (ASOCP) and heard an amazing lecture by a Dermatologist from Brazil.  Her before and after stretch mark pictures using her therapy were outstanding with at least a 90% reduction or disappearance of stretch marks after 3 or so treatments.  She was using CO2 injections, also known as Carboxy therapy, under the stretch marks.  Whoa… isn’t that that greenhouse gas stuff you hear about?  Truth is CO2 has been in use for decades as a treatment for skin conditions and wound problems. It has been used for over 40 years in laparoscopic surgery around the world without any problems.  Problem was the FDA had not approved it for skin usage in the USA. …..Until now.

So how does Carboxy Therapy work?  Basically when an area of the body has an excessive buildup of CO2 the brain thinks there may be tissue damage that needs to be corrected.  What happens is that there is a massive shift of Oxygen to that area with the CO2 being taken away  then exhaled by the patient.  In fact, there results an even greater O2 concentration in that area than what can be acheived by direct O2 injection. In addition, because you have fooled your body physiology into thinking there is damaged tissue, a large amount of platelets and growth factors also stream into the injected area.  What results is marked oxygenition of the stretch mark and a rebuild of the damaged collagen protein.

I know this treatment sounds far fetched but I have found in my own patient research that is not only works but works exceptionally well.  It does take about 3-5 treatments for the best result spaced about a month apart.  I have one patient with pigmented stretch marks that is showing good fading and healing of the marks.

The treatment is simple.  You come in about 45 minutes before your treatment appointment to apply a numbing cream to the area. A small injection needle is then used to direct the CO2 just under the skin of the damaged area.  It takes about 15 minutes.  No downtime.   The treatment is then repeated in a month.   It takes about 2 weeks after the treatment to start seeing the results.  It can also be used to thin raised scars on the body.

I am so excited to bring this innovative yet simple treatment to South Carolina.  If you are tired of the stretch marks or raised scars, this may be what you have been waiting for.

Stretch Marks no more.

Dr. O’Dell

 

BOTOX…..It’s not just for wrinkles anymore.

Botox has been around now for 15 years and has been a game changer in the world of wrinkle smoothing.  Basically it partially paralizes the muscles in the forehead and around the eyes giving marked relaxation to those muscles and an improvement or elimination to the wrinkles.  It has also been used in kids with cerebral palsey to relax the contractured muscles seen in that unfortunate condition to allow physical therapy to the affected muscles.  Next came a wonderful breakthrough in the treatment of migraine headaches where Botox can be injected in the “trigger” muscles in the scalp, back of the neck or other areas giving marked relief of the headaches in both severity and recurrance.  TMJ syndrome is also treated quite well with injection into the Masseter or chewing muscle which greatly reduces or eliminates the teeth grinding at night.  Tired of those pucker lines around the mouth or that bulging chin?  Botox injections properly placed can reduce those lines and also give your chin a more tapered normal look too.  Injeciton into the “neck bands” and neck wrinkles is showing promise for a more youthful neck.

Over the last several years more and more innovative uses for Botox have immerged that are proving once again to be game changers in medicine.  Many patients present with a wide face from a thickened Masseter muscle.  Injection into that muscle (the chewing muscle) tends to relax it and “thin” its profile so that the face has a slimmer profile without doing any surgery.  An amazing treatment we do at Genesis is injection of Botox to reduce excessive sweating known as HYPERHYDROSIS.  In this condition excessive sweating occurs even if you are in a cold room, giving you that ugly ring under the arm.  It also occurs in the palms of the hands and soles or the feet.  Injections of Botox into those areas relaxes the small muscles in the sweat glands so that less sweat is secreted.  Now no more embarassing sweat rings on your shirt or dripping wet hand shakes.  Best of all while most cosmetic Botox treatments wear off in 3-4 months, Botox for headaches and hyperhydrosis tends to last 5-8 months in most cases.

An article was written a couple years ago and new research this year has shown an association with Botox usage and an improvement in depression.  While not a cure for depression the newest research is promising for those with mild depression.

Botox can be combined with facial fillers such as Juvederm so the combination gives a more youthful “lifted'”face by working in synergy on the wrinkles and the volume loss in the face.

Botox…. It’s not just for facial wrinkles anymore.

Stay healthy…..and non wrinkled

Dr. ODell

New inside, Bodysculpting and self confidence

For the uninitiated and those who need little cosmetic work done it is easy to look at those who do need it and judge them that they are somehow vain and selfish.  I will repeat what a famous General in WW2 said about surrender….NUTS.  Yes, there are those who look great already but continue to want more and tweek their look into something not natural.  But what we do goes way beyond the visible.  What cosmetic transformation does for the majority of my patients is give them back not only a better look but an inner self confidence that many have not had for years.  I recently had a young woman who has been obese since her teen years and is now 30.  She was tired of being relegated to the larger, loose clothes and other than work did not want to go out in public or participate in any social activities.  We did our Genesis Signature LipoSculpting on her abdomen and flanks with attention to contouring details that would develop as her skin retracted.  Because of her size a minor touch up on the abdomen was done to further stimulate the skin to retract.  Now at 5 months out from her first procedure she is smiling and wearing form fitting clothing that was denied her for over 10 years.  She admitted that she now realizes that her size made her depressed and that drove her to eat more which made her bigger then more depressed which drove her to eat more…get the endless cycle.  Lipo has given her body back to her and in turn her diet is healthy now and her social life is exploding.  A recent picture she sent in was a wonderful “wow” moment for me and my staff.   I am not implying that all obese people lack self confidence and are ashamed.  Many live life to the fullest. But so many don’t due to self conciousness about their size.  If you are one of those consider a combination of Lipo at Genesis along with a re-focus of your diet and lifestyle.  You may be the next one for that “wow” moment.

Live healthy

Dr. ODell