December 11, 2002,
cosmetic surgery can do & what it cannot
Before and after cosmetic surgery
surgery can do & what it cannot
A branch of plastic surgery, cosmetic surgery has become a minefield of medical ethics. Its image is not improved by a handful of surgeons prepared to carry out almost any operation a patient requests regardless of the possible outcome as long as the fee is high enough. A conscientious practitioner should, in fact, guide you whether it is worth the cost, time and trouble, or whether a new nose or large breasts can change your life for better. There are many facets of cosmetic surgery. Here are some of them.
Small pox and pimple scars
Though small pox has been totally eradicated, it has left a whole generation scarred and mutilated. These pox marks can be erased by face peeling. In this technique the outer layer of the skin is peeled off thus smoothening the uneven surface. Deeper scars require 2-3 sittings to completely plain the surface. Thus, it is also known as surgical planning. When the same procedure is performed by the application of chemicals, it is known as chemical peeling. The same principle applies for the correction of pimple scars. The precautions include avoiding sunlight for 3-6 months. If it is necessary to travel in sun, then one has to travel in vehicles and apply sun creams to filter UV rays.
The pigmentation of the skin is treated by chemical peeling. A mixture of chemicals is applied on the skin, which causes removal of the outer layer of the skin. The new skin that comes underneath is usually free of pigments. In case there is recurrence, the same procedure can be repeated. Recently laser has been introduced as a mode of treatment for pigmented skin, but its results cannot be guaranteed and it is still under evaluation.
The procedure is used to lift up the sagging skin and spirits. In this technique, the incision is made on the hair-bearing temporal skin and under the shadow of the ear and behind the ear. The skin is undermined. The underlying muscles and fascia are tightened, the loose flap of the skin is pulled into new positions, excess skin is cut and the remaining is sutured into place. The usual age for facelift is the mid-forties and fifties but now the trend has changed. In this highly competitive world one can’t afford to lag behind others, be it education or personality. Girls of marriageable age, models, cinestars, sales girls and receptionists belonging to five star cultures go for face-lifts at the earliest signs of aging. Girls as young as 26 years have undergone face-lift to retain their position in the modelling world.
A good face-lift can make you look younger by 5-10 years. We can revert the signs of aging, but cannot arrest the process of aging. Hence new wrinkles will appear with time, depending on how fast one’s skin is ageing. Usually, one may require a second face-lift after 7-10 years. Younger the patient, longer lasting the result. For optimum result, a patient should loose weight, if required, before surgery. Losing weight post-surgery can lead to the sagging of the facial skin.
Many times, the skin around the eyes becomes loose and needs to be exercised as to give a more youthful look to the eyes. The scars are placed in such a way that they are invisible after 2-3 months.
Nose job (Rhinoplasty)
Nose is not most prominent part of one’s face. It can be reshaped in different ways like shortening, narrowing, straightening, building up or refinement of the tip. You cannot choose the type of nose desired since no two faces are alike and hence no two noses are alike. One must tell the cosmetic surgeon what bothers one in the nose and then let the surgeon decide what is required. Many a time girls have asked for a Sridevi, Madhuri nose. But it is not practical as they can have the noses which will suit their height, build, dimensions of the face and their personality. There are no scars in this operation since operation is performed through incisions inside nose. There is no pain involved in the operation though there is a little discomfort for a couple of days because one has to breathe through the mouth as the nose is packed for two days.
The breasts can be recontoured in many ways. Smaller breasts can be enlarged. Loose breasts can be suspended and bigger breasts made smaller.
Augmenting breasts: It is a simple technique. It involves creating space behind the breast tissue or behind the muscle of the chest wall. An artificial breast prosthesis is inserted into this space via an incision along the lower fold of the breast, or alternatively through an areola or through armpit. The prosthesis is made of silicone gel and is as soft as the breast itself. Breast-feeding is absolutely normal after augmentation.
Reduction of breasts: The most common method of breast reduction is for an incision to be made just around and below each nipple and under breasts. Excess breast mass is removed and then skin folded up like flap and excised. The nipple is positioned in a more natural shape. During this operation the milk ducts are also cut. Thus this procedure is advocated for married women who already have children.
Suspension of breasts: With aging, the breasts may droop down and nipples may point downwards. In youthful breasts the nipples should be pointing in front and outwards. Hence the most important factor is the repositioning of nipples. Excess skin is also cut to tighten the breast tissue.
Search for new lens
Older people whose natural lenses have hardened need not wear reading glasses anymore. A new lens implant could help them restore better vision.
People who suffer from deteriorating eyesight due to cataracts or reduced flexibility of the lenses can normally have the lenses replaced, but they will not have flexible vision and need to wear glasses.
However, an international trial is
underway to find out whether a new type of lens that moves to adjust
its focus can be used widely in cataract surgery. Dr Patrick Versace,
a refractive and cataract surgeon at Laser Sight Centres which is
conducting part of the Australian arm of the research, said that if
the trial goes well, the potential of the lens will be enormous. ANI
Man-made chemicals that are distant relatives of marijuana may eventually become new drugs to combat anxiety and depression, according to a study conducted at the University of California Irvine College of Medicine.
The study is the first to show how anxiety is controlled by the body’s anandamide system, a network of natural compounds known for their roles in governing pain, mood and other psychological functions.
While marijuana relieves anxiety by
working on the same system, laboratory rats given the new drugs don’t
seem to suffer the side-effects produced by THC, marijuana’s active
ingredient. After designing and testing a number of different
chemicals, pharmacology professor Daniele Piomelli and his team found
two chemicals, called URB532 and URB597, which relieved anxiety and
worked in ways far gentler than THC. ANI
NEW YORK: Decaffeinated coffee creates the same buzz as regular coffee, scientists believe. Researchers found increased heart rate, blood pressure and nervous system activity when occasional coffee drinkers drank a triple espresso, no matter whether it was normal or caffeine free.
Those who drank coffee regularly appeared to be protected against at least some of these effects, probably because they had grown to tolerate it. The report, published by Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association, concludes that an unknown ingredient rather than caffeine is responsible for coffee’s stimulant effects. DPA
WASHINGTON: A new study in gastroenterology has revealed that women who drink five or more cups of coffee daily are at lower risk of needing a gallstone surgery.
In a new report from the long-running Nurses Health Study, researchers say that women who drink caffeinated coffee are less likely to develop gallstones.
For the study, a group of over 80,000 women was followed for over 20 years, and their coffee intake monitored. Almost 8,000 needed gallbladder surgery. ANI
Risk factors for heart disease
WASHINGTON: A study of Finnish men has revealed that metabolic syndrome increases the risk of cardiac death by a factor of around three.
Metabolic syndrome is the name given to a cluster of risk factors — high blood pressure, high blood sugar, abdominal fat and unfavourable blood lipid profile. It’s on the increase, probably as a result of obesity and sedentary lifestyles.
Researchers in the USA and Finland have now reported on the first prospective study of the impact of metabolic lifestyle on cardiac mortality. The study suggests that metabolic syndrome should be tackled early on, before it becomes life-threatening. ANI
New contraceptive pill
LONDON: A new study has revealed that a tapeworm, called Ligula intestinalis, and found in fresh water fish, could be the source of a new form of contraceptive for both men and women. Researchers from Keele University said the tapeworm contains a chemical compound that appears to make the fish infertile. The tapeworm suppresses the production of eggs and sperm by interfering in the function of the pituitary gland.
They say this chemical may form the basis of a contraceptive for humans that both men and women could use, reports BBC. ANI
An eye for the sightless
WASHINGTON: Scientists employed with the US government are developing an electronic eye implant which works by stimulating cells around the retina. This in turn stimulates cells in the brain, which they believe may help millions to restore vision.
The researchers said that tests on animals have shown that the tiny microchip, which acts as an artificial retina, would be surgically implanted into the eye to make millions see again. The scientists, who are spearheading the project, believe they may have an implant suitable for human eyes within three years. ANI
First helping, then on and on
WASHINGTON: A new study conducted at the Pennsylvania State University has found that almost no one stops eating after just one normal serving if their plate has extra food — regardless of whether they served themselves or were given a pre-filled plate.