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CosmeticSurg Blog

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

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 In June, the FDA quietly posted a request for comments to any existing regulations that are burdensome or outdated by technology.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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We attended Robin Young’s 6th annual Stem Cell Summit which was held this year on March 1st in New York City. Also in attendance were scores of public and private stem cell companies. Presentations included 21 adult stem cell companies, 3 embryonic companies, 7 device/instrumentation companies, and a panel of medical experts discussing Spinal Cord Injury. Each company gave a 10 to 15 minute presentation but we most enjoyed Dr. Arnold Caplan’s keynote address. Not only is he well known in academic circles, but he is no stranger to the biotech financial community, as he was the founder of Osiris Therapeutics (Nasdaq: OSIR), a publicly traded cell therapy company. Here are some highlights we took away from Caplan’s keynote speech entitled, The State of MSC’s in 2011. If you are interested in stem cells from adipose tissue, you don’t want to miss this! >> Continue reading Stem Cell Summit: Adipose Tissue has more Stem Cells than Bone Marrow

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SupermanA reader of our blog posed a very interesting question having to do with stem cell activation. Briefly put,

“why do you need to inject stem cells into an area if the normal tissues in that area already have some stem cells present?”–Charles

To understand why, we will talk about two concepts with adipose derived stem cells: the stem cell niche, and stem cell activation . Adipose stem cells are stem cells that are derived from your own fat tissue.

The Stem Cell Niche

Stem cells usually exist in a low grade resting state in a controlled environment called a niche. The niche contains mesenchymal stem cells, also known as MSCs. The mesenchymal stem cell niche is usually located in the blood vessel wall itself.

The status quo for a niche is not full blown stem cell activity, but a level of activity finely attuned to its surroundings. These cells like to keep a stable environment  (on the vessels) within the niche. They will only respond in a very specific way, to certain kinds of stimuli.

In a chronic disease state such as scar tissue or aged skin, the stem cells present in that tissue are responding in many small and measured ways to whatever is happening in the tissue. Stem Cells are trying to maintain balanced conditions, this is called homeostasis. There are no big changes, just a low-grade adaptation to aging or scar process. This is why the stem cells in the local tissue are not doing what you would like them to do. To get a stem cell to do what you want it to do, something else needs to happen. It needs to get activated. >> Continue reading Stem Cell Niches, Stem Cell Activation, and Superman

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As if you didn’t know it already–big, prominent, perky butts are in! The February issue of Juicy Magazine featured a story on Brazilian Butt Lifts. Our own Dr. Rodriguez was interviewed for the story and is quoted with a pink shout out next to Kim Kardashian! >> Continue reading Juicy Magazine Features Dr. Rodriguez in Bootylicious Article

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crystal ball2010 ushered in the new promising decade for the use of adipose stem cells. Stem cells from your own autologous fat, also known as adipose stem cells, have the power to rejuvenate tissue, heal wounds, and cure diseases.

Taking the pulse at the various Stem Cell conferences around the country in 2010, we found that more clinical researchers are gravitating to adipose tissue as a source of stem cells. Bone marrow has historically been the default source of adult stem cells for researchers. Likewise, the volume of peer reviewed publications and research papers attesting to fat as an abundant source of stem cells has seen a tremendous increase in the past year.

So what’s in store for 2011? Fat is phat again! >> Continue reading Plastic Surgery Predictions 2011: Fat Stem Cells 2.0

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New evidence points to an improvement in vascularity and blood flow when stem cells are more concentrated in the fat to be transplanted. For therapeutic approaches, reproducible protocols of adipose-derived stem cells isolation and a large amount of cells are necessary, in order to respond to the increasing demand. Therefore, to practically understand what happens when adipose tissue is manipulated in the operating room, we studied the most common methods of fat processing employed by most plastic surgeons, in order to see which method yields the highest quantity of stem cells. >> Continue reading Centrifugation of Fat Tissue Yields More Stem Cells than Originally Thought

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Looking at your breasts the way a doctor does can be an emotional event full of new information which may be hard to process, but it is essential that you and your doctor are ‘on the same page’ regarding the type of implant and surgical approach that will be used.

Learn what 7 questions you should discuss and answer during your initial breast augmentation consultation. >> Continue reading 7 Questions To Answer Before Your Breast Augmentation

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At the 2010 IFATS conference in Dallas, Dr. Sydney Coleman concluded that the high density fractions of lipoaspirate are superior to the low density fractions in terms of fat survival because they have a higher percentage of stem cells. What does this mean for fat grafting patients? >> Continue reading 2010 IFATS Conference : High Density Fat Better for Fat Grafting

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Highlights from the 2010 ASPS Plastic Surgery Hot Topics Panel
We recently attended the annual ASPS National Plastic Surgery Meeting in Toronto. We particularly enjoyed the ‘Hot Topics’ panel session and have written an analysis of the notable presentations on Adipose Stem Cells by Dr. Robert Singer and Dr. Peter Rubin. >> Continue reading Plastic Surgery Hot Topics Session - Adipose Stem Cells

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A recent study published by a team from University of Pittsburgh Medical School is encouraging for researchers, clinicians, and medical device makers who are developing adipose stem cell treatments for breast reconstruction. Learn about the history of fat grafting and the safety conclusions of the Pittsburgh study. >> Continue reading Stem Cell Enhanced Fat Grafting for Breast Reconstruction

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Lately, my patients have been quite educated about the various techniques that surgeons use for the Lip Lift procedure. Recently a patient asked me if my technique would cut muscle or nerves. This is a good question and I would like readers to know that my technique does NOT cut muscle or nerves!

In summary, this is a description of the lip lift technique that I have been using for many years:

1) An incision is made at the base of the nose in the natural ridge between lip skin and nasal skin.
2) Skin is elevated only to the level where preoperative markings were made, leaving the muscle intact.
3) We spread muscle fibers at 5 points to reach the membrane covering the septum and nasal bones. Three tunnels are made centrally: one through the septum and the other two on either side of i, corresponding to the middle and ridges of the philrum in the upper lip. One tunnel at the outer border of the nostrils.
4) The sutures are tied to the underside of the lip skin. The sutures do not tie muscle, and do not tie nerves. There is no cutting of any structure once we cut skin. >> Continue reading Lip Lift - A Technical Description of the Procedure

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While much of our web site is dedicated to learning about cosmetic surgery and preparing for your procedure, we would like to talk about the recovery period following any cosmetic surgery procedure.

In your pre-operative appointment, which usually occurs the week before your surgery, Dr. Rodriguez and the Surgical Coordinator will review your post op instructions. They will give you a description of what you should expect following your cosmetic surgery. Dr. Ricardo Rodriguez uses smart cell phone technology to keep in touch with his patients during the immediate post op period. >> Continue reading Using technology in your Post Operative Recovery Period

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