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CosmeticSurg Blog

Dr. Rodriguez discusses Plastic Surgery, Medicine, and Stem Cell Research

About Leeza Rodriguez

Leeza Rodriguez has B.S. Petroleum Engineering from LSU. She is Operations Manager for both the Plastic Surgery Practice and the Surgical Facility, in addition to publishing the CosmeticSurg website and blog.

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Here are my most recent posts

woman saving money in piggy bankPatients who call our office looking for breast augmentation information are usually also gathering total surgical cost prices as well as financing information. This week, our office did a little bit of secret shopping to find out what the average cost of a breast augmentation procedure costs in Baltimore.

Remember that breast augmentation total costs depend on whether you select Silicone or Saline Implants. We compared costs of both. >> Continue reading How much does Breast Augmentation Cost in Baltimore, Maryland?

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IFATS logoThis year marked the 10th anniversary of IFATS, the International Federation for Adipose Therapeutics and Science, an organization which includes scientists and Medical Doctors from a wide range of specialties. The conference was held in Quebec, Canada and included over 100 abstracts, most of which focused on on Adipose Stem Cells. Abstracts and keynotes were presented form three categories of research: basic science, translational science, and clinical research. There were many exciting findings, but here’s a summary of highlights we found most interesting. >> Continue reading IFATS 2012 Conference: All about Adipose Stem Cells

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Adipose Stem Cell Clinical Trials July/August 2012It’s been over two months since I updated my database of Adipose Stem Cell Clinical Trials. I am tracking registered Clinical Trials in the ClinicalTrials.gov database. A lot has happened in only two months! Eight new Clinical Trials have been registered in the ClinicalTrials.gov database since June 1, 2012. This brings the all time total of Adipose Stem Cell Clinical Trials to 62.

Adipose Stem Cells are currently being used in Clinical Trials to treat and cure a wide range of diseases. My original project summary detailed the conditions under study. Conditions include Arthritis, Autism, Crohn’s, Fistula, Kidney, MS, Pulmonary, Diabetes, Cardiac, Neuro, Orthopedic, Reconstructive, and others.

Since June, the conditions with the highest number of new registered Clinical Trials using Adipose Stem Cells included the Brain and Orthopedic conditions. Other conditions in the newly registerd studies include Fistula, Heart, Neuro, and Pain.

All of the new trials are using autologous Adipose Stem Cells, except for the trials studying Brain conditions. Clinical Trials to study Brain conditions are using both autologous and allogeneic Adipose Stem Cells (ASC’s). In Taiwan researchers are studying Severe Brain Injury with autologous ASC’s, but using allogeneic ASC’s to treat Cerebellar Ataxia. Autologous stem cells are your own stem cells, and allogeneic stem cells are from another person. >> Continue reading Adipose Stem Cell Clinical Trial Update- August 2012 (part 4)

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Spain Adipose Stem Cell Trials

Spain…..Soccer World Superstar. But what about Stem Cells?!

If there was a World Cup for Stem Cells, Spain would get that too! While Spain is the world leader of Soccer, they are also the dominant player in a new arena of Stem Cell Research. According to information publicly available at ClinicalTrials.gov, Spain is the leader in Clinical Trials using Adipose Stem Cells.  And just like Soccer, compared to other countries, it’s not even close!

Adipose Stem Cell Clinical Trial Leaders

As of early June 2012, Spain has registered at least 18  different Clinical Trial locations using Adipose Stem Cells. Mexico and  Korea are next with 11 and 10 trials respectively. And what of the great USA, the hot bed of medical innovation? We have a grand total of 3 trials .   We pose the question: Has any U.S. money gone to funding these overseas trials? Have any of these trials been funded by U.S. charitable organizations, institutions, or American Venture Capital?   While we are happy to see the sector forward *anywhere*, it is somewhat disappointing that U.S. patients have such a limited access to these promising new therapies. We welcome your thoughts on this. >> Continue reading Adipose Stem Cell Clinical Trials by Country-- Spain dominates (part 3)

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Chart: adipose stem cell clinical trials by donor sourceThis week I will focus on whether each of the 54 existing adipose stem cell trials used autologous or allogeneic stem cells. This analysis therefore includes all adipose clinical trials, regardless of recruitment status. Why is knowing whether a clinical trial used autologous or allogeneic adipose stem cells important? It is important because each category represents a different sector of the health care industry. Thus, it gives a hint as to whether Pharma, Device Makers, or Personalized Medicine are leading the new era of Regenerative Medicine. >> Continue reading Adipose Stem Cell Clinical Trials by Donor Source (part 2)

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stem cell clinical trial disease indications graphAnyone who reads this blog knows that we are passionate about the future of adipose stem cells, the stem cells that are derived from your own fat. Many people know about their ability to enhance fat grafts for breast reconstruction, but we hear very little in the general media about their ability to cure and treat many diseases. Unless you are a biotech investor hanging out in Cytori message boards, you may not know that many Phase I clinical trials with adipose stem cells have even been completed. >> Continue reading Adipose Stem Cell Clinical Trial Update June 2012

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We so often see photographs of celebrities that have duck lips. If you don’t know what I am referring to, please tune into the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and take a look at most of the women.

You know the story–the lips protrude out like duck bills because too much filler is put into the lips. While Taylor wins the prize, Kyle is catching up to her. It does look terrible. So, how can YOU have fuller lips without getting duck lips? >> Continue reading Getting Rid of those Real Housewives Duck Lips!

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While Friday the 13th may be bad luck for some, such was not the case for the U.S. stem cell industry. On Friday, April 13, the Texas Medical Board (TMB) approved the first set of regulations which will allow physicians to offer autologous adult stem cell therapies. And on Monday, April 16, the Wall Street Journal posted an Op Ed piece written by the former FDA commissioner in support of stem cell therapy. Read on to learn why these recent news items may just spell good news for the stem cell industry, and regen medicine. >> Continue reading Texas Medical Board and WSJ OpEd: Tipping Point for Stem Cell Industry

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What are the most common sizes of breast implants used in breast augmentation?

To find out, we did an analysis of the last 125 cases of breast augmentation procedures performed by Dr. Rodriguez in our surgery center located in Baltimore, Maryland. So what styles and sizes of implants were most popular? Glad you asked! >> Continue reading Top 5 Breast Implant Sizes for Breast Augmentation

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It is no secret to biotech investors that stem cell stocks suffered dramatic declines in 2011. To be more specific, they were taken out to the woodshed and beat to smithereens. Robin Young summarized that the market capitalization of all the public stem cell sectors declined by 25% in 2011 compared to the previous year. In 2011, total market cap of the entire publicly traded stem cell sector was only $ 3.4 Billion. Every single publicly traded stem cell stock declined in value, except for one company, Mesoblast (ASX: MBX).

At this year’s Stem Cell Summit in NY, Robin Young attributed the steep sector decline to ‘regulatory pushback’. That is code speak to mean that the FDA reversed some of the previous favorable decisions from the past. In one example, an allograph product fom Allosource was already approved, but now the FDA was reclassifying the product from tissue to drug causing major upheaval in the industry.

However, the good news is that 2011 is now over! The thinking is that the stem cell space is emerging from the ‘valley of death’, or the ‘trough of disillusionment’. Find out what the next mind-blowing application in stem cell therapy is and what companies are projected to lead the marketplace… >> Continue reading 2012 NYC Stem Cell Summit: It's Darkest Before the Dawn

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Several years ago we became fascinated with the potential of adipose stem cells for both cosmetic and medical purposes. However, we soon discovered that nothing in the written FDA guidelines specifically addressed the use of autologous adipose stem cells. Thus began our journey for an answer. In June 2009, we sent a letter to the FDA asking for a position statement on adipose stem cells. Our request focused specifically on autologous, freshly isolated, adipose stem cells for use in reconstruction. These stem cells are from your own fat, for your own usage, and not culture expanded in a lab.

After a very long wait, we recently received a written response from the FDA. First, a little bit of background for any stem cell newbies…. >> Continue reading FDA: Stem Cells from Your Own Fat are a Drug

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Nearly everyone has heard of Groupon, the coupon site for daily deals. If you are on the receiving end as a consumer, it can be a great way to get some great deals. For over a year we have been seeing other plastic surgeons and dermatologists sell Botox® at huge discounts. Not wanting to be outdone by our competitors, we decided to explore our options for selling facial injectables such as Botox, Restylane, Juvederm and Sculptra via Groupon. Find out why we won’t be offering Botox discounts via Groupon. >> Continue reading Groupon Daily Deals for Botox - Violation of State Regulations?

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Unless you are a science major, understanding the topic of stem cells can be daunting. The mainstream media has provided some good articles on the topic of Stem Cells, but there is a lot of misleading information out there.

Often times mainstream media lumps all stem cells into one category to imply that all therapies are a decade away and that very little clinical data exists. That is simply not categorically true. In an effort to give you a mile high view of the stem cell world, we made a graphic, Stem Cell Types – Debunking Misconceptions. >> Continue reading Adult, Embryonic, and Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells - Who's ready for prime time?

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President Obama ordered federal agencies, such as the FDA, to search their books and strike any overburdensome regulations. In June, the FDA quietly posted a request for comments to any existing regulations that are burdensome or outdated by technology. We passed the link on to Professor Mary Chirba who then submitted comments to the FDA regarding autologous stem cell therapies. She has graciously given us permission to post her comments here on our blog. >> Continue reading FDA Stem Cell Regulation and the English Language: switched at birth?

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Fat grafting, also known as fat transfers or fat injections, is a plastic surgery procedure which removes fat from unwanted areas of your body, carefully processes the fat, and then reinjects your own adipose fat tissue where more volume is desired. Fat injections can help rejuvenate your face, your buttocks, your hands, or your breasts. Fat injections are also being used in breast reconstruction surgery. Fat grafting will restore volume to the breast and can be performed with or without an implant.

Lately we have seen some plastic surgery blogs expressing concern regarding how fat injections to the breast affect mammograms. We feel that both sides of the story are not being told, so we would like to address that here. >> Continue reading Fat Grafting to the Breast - Will It Affect Mammograms?

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