Our colleagues at Bank Aesthetics have recently won a special award for their work with Obagi! We would like to add our congratulations to Maria and the team and we hope to continue our great relationship with them!
With the rise in reality TV shows over the past decade, we are used to seeing the transformation of very normal people into minor, and sometimes even major, celebrities. With this rise to fame often comes a desire to change, tweak and alter one’s appearance, and it is commonplace to see news articles showing before and after stories of familiar TV personalities.
A concern raised by the British Association of Aesthetic Surgeons (BAAPS) is that with the increased presence of social media comes mounting pressure to look like celebrity idols. With increased demand comes a rise in those who are able to meet this demand. While many of these providers are legitimate, some are not, so it is very important to understand the differences between trained and regulated professionals, and those who have spotted an opportunity to meet a new demand in the marketplace.
Rise in demand for dermal fillers
One procedure that has been growing in popularity is dermal fillers. These fillers are designed to help plump up the skin, leaving it looking smoother, younger and less wrinkly. The procedure is done with a series of injections, whereby the filler is inserted underneath the skin. Depending on the components that make up the dermal filler, these can last weeks, months or years.
The NHS warns “take time to find a reputable practitioner who is properly qualified and practices in a clean, safe and appropriate environment” and this is a sentiment echoed by BAAPS and by qualified cosmetic surgeons like Mr Park.
One such concern is that practitioners might allow younger people to have treatments such as this, when in fact best practice would be that this shouldn’t be allowed for the under 21s.
According to a report published recently by WhatClinic.com and highlighted by BAAPS, “42% of web traffic to lip augmentation pages were from visitors aged 18-24, with the clinics surveyed saying that while they unanimously would not provide lip filler to under 18s, most would provide fillers to under 21s.” Regulated professionals argue that despite a rise in enquiries and interest from the under 21s, this type of treatment should still be reserved for older patients.
Stick with the experts
A plastic surgeon that is a member of an organisation such as BAAPS like Mr Alan Park will have the surgical experience and knowledge to produce optimal results and ensure these mistakes won’t happen. In fact, Mr Park recently taught a maxillofacial cadaver course on fillers to surgical trainees and consultants from the UK and overseas. This degree of training is just not available to or accessed by aesthetic practitioners who will typically undertaken very basic training. If you’re considering a cosmetic procedure such as dermal fillers, do your research thoroughly and make sure you’re speaking with a trusted practitioner.
Mr Park and his son have now completed his charity bike ride, raising the grand total of £3,100 for the Mary Ann Evans Hospice.
Currently, Mr Alan Park is cycling 400 miles in four days – from Warwickshire to Amersterdam – to raise money for Mary Ann Evans Hospice. First leg of the journey is to Calais, then off to Belgium, before reaching the city of Amsterdam. As well as GlynPears, tandem riders Drs Jim and Cathryn Jacob, Mr Park will be joined by his 17-year-old son Cameron.
The Mary Ann Evans Hospice is your local community hospice whose aim is to provide specialised care, support and advice to patients and their families when living with a life-limiting illness.
We also provide expert secondary Lymphoedema care and treatments. We believe everyone in Nuneaton, Bedworth, Atherstone, Coleshill and the surrounding villages in Northern Warwickshire should be offered the choice of quality end of life care.
Our services are delivered free of charge by a team of staff and volunteers who place great emphasis on choice, dignity, respect, compassion and enablement.
This worthwhile charity relies solely on donations.
All surgeries carry risks and rewards, and it is the task of the consultant to help patients understand the balance of these two factors. If the rewards outweigh the risks, patients feel confident and comfortable with their decision to undergo a surgical operation. So if you’re considering having surgery to address drooping eyelids, known as a blepharoplasty, what risks do you need to be aware of?
Setting realistic expectations
The first thing to understand is what a blepharoplasty actually addresses. It is not a fat removal procedure, but is a way of removing excess skin from around the eyelids. Going into an operation with incorrect expectations about what it will achieve will no doubt result in disappointment.
After the operation, patients may experience puffiness around the eyes, blurred vision and bloodshot eyes. Although these symptoms can be expected in the short term as part of the normal healing process, sometimes patients will pick up an infection as their incisions heal. This can make these symptoms last longer. Your surgeon will offer advice about healing times and if you feel your eyes are taking longer to heal than they should, you may need a short course of antibiotics to treat an infection.
One of the other side effects that can occur is that the skin around the eyelids is tightened too much, leaving little ‘hollows’ underneath the eyes. This is entirely down to the skill off the surgeon; and a skilled, accredited and regulated surgeon will be well aware of these risks and work to mitigate chances of this.
The best way to avoid this is to ensure that you are seeing a professionally accredited surgeon. Coventry and Leamington cosmetic surgeon Mr Alan Park is a member of three professional associations, the Royal College of Surgeons, the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons and the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons. This means that you can be assured that he operates to the highest industry standards.
Look at previous examples of blepharoplasty
Another good idea is to ask to see photos of blepharoplasty procedures that your surgeon has undertaken previously. Mr Alan Park has an extensive catalogue of images he will be happy to take you through so that you can have a look at his approach and have confidence in the expected outcome.
If you are planning on taking a surgical step to improve your facial features, this article from Coventry and Leamington cosmetic surgeon Mr Alan Park gives you an insight about what to expect from the procedure, and the problem areas that a facelift is designed to tackle.
A facelift primarily targets skin that, through the aging process or weight gain/loss, has lost some of its natural elasticity and is has changed in appearance.
The skin may look as if it is drooping and you may have more wrinkles than you are prepared to accept. The facelift procedure is designed to help address these aesthetic complaints, and the areas of the face that are most typically improved by a facelift are the cheeks and neck areas.
During the operation, the surgeon will lift the skin around the cheeks, neck and temples, pulling it backwards and tightening it. Alongside this, the surgeon may also lift the layer of tissue underneath the skin, which compounds the effect and makes the result look more natural – and likely to last longer.
The outcome will be that the skin appears firmer and tighter (although not unnaturally so). Many women believe that the procedure gives a more youthful appearance and helps restore lost confidence, which can be caused by the appearance of aging or saggy skin.
What can’t a facelift do?
One common misconception is that a facelift will help address sagging skin around the forehead and the eyes – this is actually not the case.
If these areas are troubling you, then you need to speak to your surgeon about a brow lift (which tackles the forehead) or a blepharoplasty (which tackles the eyelids). These can often be performed in tandem with other operations, such as a facelift.
In terms of scarring, the good news is that the incision sites from a facelift are usually concealed within the hairline, so you can be confident that there will be hardly any negative tell-tale signs that you have undergone surgery. Over time the scars will fade and will be very difficult to see, so eventually you will be able to wear your hair in any style you wish.
Facelifts are typically expected to last between five and ten years. They are subject to the continuity of the aging process, so over time they will start to gradually soften and nature will once again take control. When, or if, you feel you are ready to talk to your surgeon again, book a consultation to understand whether any follow up work is necessary.
Blepharoplasty is the technical terminology for eyelid surgery, which is designed to help boost confidence in people who feel that the skin around their eyes is drooping, and making them look older than they feel or than they would like to. This is a condition that happens naturally as skin gets older and loses some of its elasticity.
There are a wide variety of creams on the market that claim to offer fixes to this condition, however these are limited in what they can realistically expect to achieve. Some may have subtle, short term benefits, but none will be able to actually reverse the ageing process.
Making the decision to go under the knife is a big decision that should not be taken lightly. There will be pros and cons of any appearance-altering surgery, so the most important thing to do is to ensure you have weighed up the potential benefits versus any potential negatives, to conclude whether the decision is right for you.
When is the time right for me?
One of the more common questions patients ask when they are considering a blepharoplasty is when it is considered to be medically necessary. To answer that, the motivations for the operation must be considered.
If the reason you are considering this type of operation relates to aesthetics, then there is no set age or life stage when this is considered ‘correct’. The decision sits with you – you must consider how you feel, whether the skin around your eyes is causing you worry or confidence concerns, and how prepared you are to live with it.
When eyelid surgery isn’t just about looks
Alternatively, for some people, the drooping skin around the eyes can actually impair their vision, meaning that it is more important to get a medical assessment and consider whether a blepharoplasty will improve your overall quality of life.
Saggy skin over they eyes that impairs vision may render you unsafe to drive or operate machinery, so if you feel that this is the case then it is important to treat the situation before it results in a more serious implication.
If you are worried about the skin around your eyes and wish to get a professional opinion, schedule an appointment to talk this through with Coventry and Leamington cosmetic surgeon Mr Alan Park, who will be able to help advise on all options available.
Often when patients attend their consultation for Breast Augmentation (often referred to as Boob Job) Surgery they have an idea of what size implant they’d like, sometimes they have seen a celebrity whose implant size has been reported or a friend has had surgery and they think that size would be perfect for them, however it is important to recognise the many factors that contribute to the overall result of breast surgery.
A certain implant size in one patient may look very different in another, why is this?
By understanding a patients anatomical structure, by measuring the base width, the thickness of the breast tissue, and the degree of sagging (ptosis), it will become clear which implants will be suitable for your body shape and whether this will result in the look you are hoping to achieve.
At your consultation you will be given the opportunity to try gel sizers that will give an idea of the result you are likely to achieve, however prior to your consultation the rice test can help give an approximate indication of the size, this involves filling a stocking as below
Amount of Dry Rice
(cups) to Implant Volume Simulated in cubic centimeters
0.53 cup 125 cc
0.63 cup 150 cc
0.74 cup 175 cc
0.85 cup 200 cc
0.95 cup 225 cc
1.06 cups 250 cc
1.16 cups 275 cc
1.27 cups 300 cc
1.37 cups 325 cc
1.48 cups 350 cc
1.59 cups 375 cc
1.8 cups 425 cc
2.01 cups 475 cc
2.22 cups 525 cc
2.43 cups 575 cc
2.64 cups 625 cc
2.96 cups 700 cc
There are also variations in the profile of implants available, a low profile, moderate or high profile. Again these options will determine the result, a low profile will give a flatter result, a moderate a more natural look and high profile will give a fuller and rounder looking breast. A high profile does not mean it sits higher on the chest it means the implant will project forward the most.
Like with all Cosmetic Surgery it is best to attend your consultation with an open mind and a realistic approach but there is no harm in doing your research before you attend, this will give your surgeon the best idea of whether the result is one that’s achievable and in line with your expectations.
If you are considering Breast Augmentation and would like more information, please visit www.alanjpark.com or to arrange a consultation at one of my clinics in Warwick, Coventry or Nuneaton, please call 07468 418 419
Baaps announced a fellowship training programme for cosmetic surgery at their annual meeting which I attended last week. It is very true indeed that training in the NHS is sadly lacking. Many cosmetic surgery procedures that were fairly common in the NHS even ten years ago are simply not undertaken there anymore. As such, newly qualified consultants begin private practice with very little if any training in certain procedures. This is not right. Hopefully, more fellowships will appear. BAAPS has started the ball rolling.
In my practice, I undertake procedures I am happy performing. Breast augmentation, facelift, abdominoplasty I do quite happily. However, due to the nature and complexity of Rhinoplasty, I chose not to undertake them, even though I can do them and am perfectly competent.
For a consultation in Warwick , Nuneaton or Coventry areas, please call me on 01926 436332 or 01926 436310
I would stress that this is something we always say to our patients, whether they are new patients or who have had previous procedures. We always allow a good cool off period of two weeks and counsel patients until we are absolutely sure and they are absolutely sure that surgery is a good option for them. It’s the right and proper thing to do. If any provider is not doing this, they are letting their patients down.
Cosmetic surgery is a serious subject, despite many stories we see in the media that in our view trivialise it. It’s your body. Put it in good hands.
Many people read articles daily on the subject of plastic surgery. Normally, it is related to a new aesthetic technique available in a high street clinic or maybe a story in relation to a celebrity. This article quite rightly highlights the great work done by plastic surgeons around the work for the patients we see with cancer. Although we do all our initial training in the NHS, we do a huge amount of courses, meetings and conferences every year to ensure we are aware of the newest techniques. Recently I attended a facial flaps course and was a speaker, something I am always delighted to do.
Without the NHS providing us with incredible training over many years, we would not and could not have a private practice. I am a great believer that patients should have the ability to fund their own surgery if they want a procedure in the private sector. However, I also believe that the NHS work we do is absolutely to society as a whole and to the development of future plastic surgeons. This is why I have been clinical lead in The University Hospital of Coventry and Warwickshire for some years now. It gives me huge satisfaction to see the development of many young surgeons who will treat patients in our NHS hospitals for years to come.
My NHS practice is based in Coventry. My private practice is also based in the same area.