Lesser known cosmetic procedures can be effective

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Everyone knows about facelifts, eyelid lifts, nose jobs, mommy makeovers, and various breast procedures. But there are also some less well-known surgical and nonsurgical procedures that can make a big difference.

Have you ever heard, "You can always tell a person's age by looking at their hands"? There are multiple solutions for this, according to the individual's problem.

Atrophic skin revealing veins, bones and tendons can be treated quickly with injections of various fillers, such as Restylane or Juvederm products or fat. The effect is immediate and dramatic.

For age spots, the Fraxel laser or LaserGenesis tightens skin and reduces the spots.

For saggy brows, fillers can be used in the forehead and under the brow itself. Brows can sag from loss of the youthful mound under the brow and into the forehead.

This takes just a few minutes and the result is immediate.

The Fraxel laser and LaserGenesis are additional procedures that further raise the brow and augment the youthful appearance of the forehead.

Large earlobes seem to occur with age and heavy earrings, resulting in these thin, droopy appendages.

If earlobes are too thin, a filler can work with Restylane or Juvederm products.

If they are too large, a minor surgical procedure will reduce them. Often, a combination might be necessary for optimum results.

Pencil-thin eyebrows were a fad years ago. Many women over-plucked their eyebrows. The treatment for missing brows is a hair transplant from the scalp.

The result will look very natural and is permanent. Anesthesia is local and down time is minimal.

As we age, we lose size in our maxillary bone (the bone our upper teeth are attached to). This can result in a droopy nose.

A long-term filler, such as Voluma, can be injected over the maxilla just under the center of the nose, and the nose will turn up beautifully.

Crooked noses can often be treated effectively with fillers injected into depressions to create symmetry.

With age, upper lips get thinner and longer. This increase in length can be reduced with a "buck-horn" lip lift, an excision of about 0.5 to 0.6mm of skin just under the nose to achieve the ideal length of 14 to 15mm.

The name refers to the shape of the excision and is done under local anesthesia in a few minutes. Fillers and-or Fraxel lasers can be used for perioral wrinkles.

Non-surgical reduction of fat and skin tightening can be achieved with radio frequency, as in the ThermiTight, or ThermiVA (for vaginal restoration and stress incontinence).

The fat reduction appears to be permanent, and the skin tightening lasts a year or two.

Treatments are typically to the neck, arms, abdomen, thighs and "love-handles."

It would be effective for mild to moderate "man-boobs" (gynecomastia) as well. Either general or local anesthesia are needed with minimal recovery time.

E. Ronald Finger, MD, FACS is a board certified plastic surgeon with offices in Savannah and Bluffton. www.fingerand associates.com

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