So you have probably all heard by now that Angelina Jolie was diagnosed with the BRCA1 gene and has undergone a double mastectomy with reconstruction. The actress and director wrote a very poignant, well-written op-ed for theNew York Times. Here is a segment of it:
On April 27, I finished the three months of medical procedures that the mastectomies involved. During that time I have been able to keep this private and to carry on with my work.
But I am writing about it now because I hope that other women can benefit from my experience. Cancer is still a word that strikes fear into people’s hearts, producing a deep sense of powerlessness. But today it is possible to find out through a blood test whether you are highly susceptible to breast and ovarian cancer, and then take action.
My own process began on Feb. 2 with a procedure known as a “nipple delay,” which rules out disease in the breast ducts behind the nipple and draws extra blood flow to the area. This causes some pain and a lot of bruising, but it increases the chance of saving the nipple.
Two weeks later I had the major surgery, where the breast tissue is removed and temporary fillers are put in place. The operation can take eight hours. You wake up with drain tubes and expanders in your breasts. It does feel like a scene out of a science-fiction film. But days after surgery you can be back to a normal life.
Nine weeks later, the final surgery is completed with the reconstruction of the breasts with an implant. There have been many advances in this procedure in the last few years, and the results can be beautiful.
I choose not to keep my story private because there are many women who do not know that they might be living under the shadow of cancer. It is my hope that they, too, will be able to get gene tested, and that if they have a high risk they, too, will know that they have strong options.
Life comes with many challenges. The ones that should not scare us are the ones we can take on and take control of.
I applaud Angelina for coming forward and revealing her diagnosis and treatment. Hopefully this helps to inform people not only about the potential diagnosis and treatment options for breast cancer, but also inform women about their reconstructive options. Studies show that women who undergo immediate reconstruction after mastectomy benefit psychologically a great deal.
To read the rest of Angelina Jolie’s op-ed piece, click HERE.
If you’ve ever wondered how plastic surgeons reconstruct a woman’s breast after mastectomy, there is a very well-written article in CNN.com HERE. I’m quoted in the article, which also describes how Angelina’s reconstruction was likely performed.
This is from an article I wrote for CNN.com that just posted today. Hope you enjoy it:
“Dr. Youn, I want the works.”
Carol, an attractive Caucasian woman in her mid-forties, sat across from me in the consultation room. Her eyes stared into mine, unwavering.
“What do you mean by ‘the works?’”
“I want to enlarge my breasts, flatten my tummy, lift my neck, and skinny my thighs. Oh, and I want my eyes to tilt like Megan Fox’s, and I want you to plump my lips like Angelina Jolie’s.” She puckered and smacked her lips.
“Carol, that’s a lot of plastic surgery. Are you sure you need all this? Why do you want to have so much done?”
She paused. Her face flushed a bright shade of crimson red.
“Because,” she seethed, “My husband left me for a younger woman.
“And I want revenge.”
Revenge plastic surgery is becoming more and more common. A survey by the Transform Plastic Surgery Group in the United Kingdom found that over a quarter (26%) of their patients were recently divorced women. Eleven percent of their patients were newly single men.
Even Hollywood is getting involved in revenge surgery. The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Brandi Glanville recently revealed in her book, Drinking and Tweeting and Other Brandi Blunders, that she spent $12,000 to undergo rejuvenation of her private parts after breaking up with her then-husband Eddie Cibrian. She even paid for it with his credit card.
To read the rest of my article, click HERE to go to CNN.com
There is an interesting article (and accompanying television segment) from plastic surgeon and fellow ASAPS member, Dr. Arthur Perry, on the possible long-term side effects of chemical sunscreens. From his article on www.doctoroz.com:
There are 17 individual sunscreen ingredients that are FDA approved: 15 of these are clear chemicals that absorb UV light and two are made of minerals that reflect UV light. Of these 15, nine are known endocrine disruptors. To be effective, chemical sunscreens need to be rubbed into their skin 20 minutes before sun exposure. They do a pretty good job at blocking UV light, but they actually get used up as the sun shines on them. In fact, some sunscreens lose as much as 90% of their effectiveness in just an hour, so they need to be reapplied often. This is not the case with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, the two mineral, or physical, sunscreens. These two work very differently – they sit on the surface of the skin and physically block UV light.
Chemical sunscreens don’t sit on the surface of the skin – they soak into it and quickly find their way into the bloodstream. They scatter all over the body without being detoxified by the liver and can be detected in blood, urine, and breast milk for up to two days after a single application. That would be just fine if they were uniformly safe – but they’re not.
As I mentioned, nine of the 15 chemical sunscreens are considered endocrine disruptors. Those are chemicals that interfere with the normal function of hormones. The hormones most commonly disturbed are estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and thyroid. Endocrine disruptors, like some ingredients in chemical sunscreens, can cause abnormal development of fetuses and growing children. They cause early puberty and premature breast development in girls, and small and undescended testicles in boys. They cause low sperm counts and infertility. Endocrine disruptors that act like estrogen can contribute to the development of breast and ovarian cancers in women, and other endocrine disruptors may increase the chance of prostate cancer in men.
Pretty scary stuff, isn’t it? To be completely transparent, Dr. Perry does have his own line of skin care products, which include the sunscreen Zinc Oxide. However, I’ve met Dr. Perry, read some of his books, and am in a committee with him for the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS). He’s a solid guy and a very well-respected, board-certified plastic surgeon in New York City. To learn about his line of skin care products, go to www.drperrys.com.
Intouch used a photo from years ago on their cover and I hate it! The reason I’ve asked all magazines and blogs to stop using old photos of me is I don’t look like that anymore! I had a nose job to remove skin that was like a webbing in between my eyes. I wasn’t going to tell anyone, but I look so much prettier in my new photos that I don’t want old photos used anymore! I’m so sick of magazines and blogs using old photos! When will they stop? I will never look like that again! Having surgery was the most amazing thing for my confidence!
I’d consider that to be a nice endorsement for good plastic surgery, had she not come across lately as a troubled soul. According to the Daily Mail, she’s also recently admitted to an eating disorder and has shaved half her head! Hopefully she gets some help before something really bad happens.
The ”original supermodel” Janice Dickinson has recently given an interview to In Touch Weekly about declaring bankruptcy, being $1 million in debt, and her enthusiasm for plastic surgery. From the In Touch Weekly website:
The former and now bankrupt America’s Next Top Model judge sits down with In Touch and dishes about going broke, planning her comeback — and the only surgical procedure she won’t consider — “butt implants!”
Despite recently declaring bankruptcy — a chunk of that stemming from “press whore doctors that offered to give me Botox and fix my teeth for free and then slapped me with bills” — Janice says she can’t recall exactly how much she’s spent on surgeries to date. “I don’t remember — all my ex-husbands paid for them!” she confesses to In Touch.
And although Janice admits to her first and only breast augmentation when she was 32 or “in the Jurassic era,” as she refers to her youth, she says her surgery list is short compared to other woman in Hollywood. “I had a tummy tuck and face-lift and currently do Botox and Restylane,” she reveals to In Touch, on newsstands now.
The rest of her face is hands-off! “I don’t get anything in my cheeks. I have perfect bone structure,” the buxom brunette tells the mag, adding, “My lips are mine!”
So she claims that her doctors performed the procedures for free, then billed her afterwards? If true, that’s a strange practice. The only time I bill patients afterwards is if insurance is involved, and they owe for copays or deductibles.
You’ve gotta admit that Janice is pretty hilarious and outrageous. Hopefully she gets back on her feet again soon.
“Arm lifts” have become one of the fastest-growing varieties of plastic surgery, a new study shows.
More than 15,000 women underwent an arm lift in 2012, an increase of more than 4,000% since 2000, according to a report out Monday from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.
The popularity of the procedures isn’t driven by a desire to look as good as Michelle Obama does in a sleeveless sheath.
Instead, the surgeries are growing because more people are losing massive amounts of weight, usually through obesity surgery, says David Reath, a plastic surgeon in Knoxville, Tenn., and chairman of the public education committee for the plastic surgeon society.
About 200,000 Americans a year undergo some kind of weight-loss procedure, such as gastric bypass, says Jack Fisher, president of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, from Nashville.
While surgery can help people lose weight and fat, it doesn’t decrease the amount of skin, Reath says. People who lose 100 pounds or more can be left with a lot of extra skin.
“Once skin is stretched out, it becomes like a broken rubber band,” Fisher says. “Even when you lose weight, the skin doesn’t go back to its normal shape.”
The number of cosmetic surgeries increased by 3% last year, to nearly 1.7 million, according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. When non-surgical options such as botox injections are included, Americans had more than 10 million cosmetic procedures last year.
Arm lifts aren’t for everyone.
The surgeries can cost $5,000 or more out-of-pocket, Fisher says. And they leave patients with a scar that stretches from their elbow to their armpit.
The problem with the arm lift (aka brachioplasty) is that it leaves a long scar that extends from elbow to armpit. The scar is visible when you wave at someone and lift your arm up. For this reason, it’s usually reserved for people with a lot of excess skin, such as massive weight loss patients. It’s typically combined with liposuction for an optimal result.
For the rest of the USA Today article, click HERE.
We are what we eat. And that refers to how we look. Dr. Robert Tornambe, a board-certified plastic surgeon and member of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) recently published an article on the Huffington Post called “the Plastic Surgery Diet.” These are his recommendations on what to eat in order to maintain youthful, healthy skin. Here are his 10 easy steps to a healthy but delicious diet.
1) Eliminate unhealthy fat intake. Avoid margarine, deep fried foods and foods with trans-fat and saturated fat.
2) Increase your intake of monounsaturated oils. Use extra virgin olive oil, walnut, canola or flaxseed oils.
3) Eliminate the unhealthy “white” carbs. Avoid refined flours, sugars, white rice and foods high on glycemic index.
4) Eat plenty of whole grains. Brown rice and bulgur wheat.
5) Avoid refined and processed foods.
6) Include plenty of fruits and vegetables high in antioxidants. Blueberries, strawberries and dark leafy greens like spinach and kale.
7) Hold the salt and spice it up. Use more anti-inflammatory herbs and spices for seasoning. Curry, ginger, turmeric, cayenne, garlic and onions are all anti-inflammatory.
Eat lean protein sources like chicken. Reduce red meat and avoid full fat dairy products.
9) Eat fish high in omega-3 fatty acids. Salmon, arctic char, sardines, anchovies, black cod, mackerel and even oysters are excellent sources.
10) Drink red wine in moderation. One or two glasses daily
I like it. It’s similar to dermatologist Dr. Jessica Wu’s Feed Your Face diet, which also focuses on avoiding foods with a high glycemic index. To read the rest of Dr. Tornambe’s article “The Plastic Surgery Diet,” click HERE.
To honor Tom Cruise’s new hit movie, here’s a link to an analysis of how I think Tom looks so young, now into his 5th decade. From MSNBC.com:
“I don’t think he’s found the Fountain of Youth, but I think he’s done the next best thing — found a good plastic surgeon,” says Youn, a regular contributor to msnbc.com and TODAY.com. “He looks like someone who has had a plethora of the best cosmetic treatments available.”
Youn, who hasn’t treated Cruise, believes he’s had multiple procedures done. “To look as good as he does, it’s not possible to have had just one thing done.”
I just returned from the annual meeting of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), the premiere society for cosmetic plastic surgeons. It took place at the Javits Convention Center in Manhattan, and was attended by the top aesthetic surgeons in the United States. This is THE meeting where the hottest new treatments are introduced, scrutinized, and demo’d, and plastic surgeons describe the newest ways to perform surgeries with less downtime and better results. Here are some highlights:
1. I was privileged to be invited to be on the Media Relations committee for ASAPS, along with several other very prominent plastic surgeons. Although our committee is small, it’s a virtual who’s who in famous ‘media’ plastic surgeons today, including Dr. Andrew Ordon from “The Doctors,” Dr. Brent Moelleken from “Extreme Makeover” and “Plastic Wives,” Dr. Arthur Perry who co-authored the “Me” books with Dr. Mehmet Oz, and Dr. Steve Teitelbaum, chair of the committee and frequent television commentator. I look forward to working with these great doctors to exert a positive influence on today’s media.
2. “Hot Topics” is my favorite session at the annual meeting, as this five hour course reveals the most newsworthy items in our field. Some highlights included Exparel (a new medication that might make pain pumps obsolete), the Lifestyle Lift, Nonsurgical Fat Reduction, and the award for the worst, overhyped gimmick of all (the fad of thread lifts).
3. Two of the most talked-about subjects in plastic surgery are the new FDA-approved Natrelle 410 breast implants (aka the gummy bear implants) and use of Strattice for treating breast implant capsular contracture. My old friend and colleague, Dr. Brad Bengtson, revealed his experience using Strattice to treat recurrent capsular contractures, with impressive results. If only the Strattice wasn’t so expensive!
4. I had the pleasure of reconnecting with Dr. John Trupiano, an old friend who is now a practicing plastic surgeon in Fargo, North Dakota. We had a nice dinner together and then watched “Oz: The Great and Powerful.” If you’re in Fargo, he’s a great guy to see.
I’m looking forward to the next ASAPS meeting next year, scheduled to take place in San Fran!
For more about ASAPS, or to find an ASAPS doctor in your area, visit www.surgery.org.
I was recently asked to demonstrate a novel, take-home device for tightening the skin of the face for “the Ricki Lake Show.” This is a one-of-a-kind device, and although not the same as the laser treatments in the office, can be a nice way to rejuvenate your skin at home.
I’ve liked actress Hayden Panettiere ever since she debuted as the indestructible cheerleader on “Heroes.” The star of “Nashville” has been photographed wearing a bikini with a suspiciously larger chest. Some photos even appear to show wrinkling that is consistent with saline breast implants. You can see a photo of it, along with my comments on Radar Online.com HERE.
So what can Hayden do to reduce her possible implant wrinkling? Implant wrinkling is typically improved by switching to a silicone implant, injecting fat into the breast tissue, or placing a sheet of Alloderm (acellular dermal matrix – radiated cadaver skin) over the implant. Or she could gain weight, which would thicken the fat on her breasts.
I recently wrote an article for CNN.com about tattoos that has gotten a lot of views and comments (over 2000 of them!) If you haven’t read it yet, here is the first part:
A few years ago I interviewed a handyman to do some work on my house. I noticed a teardrop tattoo at the top of his left cheek. Prior to hiring him, I searched online for what this design signified. My mouth dropped when I found out.
A teardrop tattoo can mean he murdered someone.
So I hired someone else.
Plastic surgeons and dermatologists are seeing more and more people who want their tattoos removed, often because they worry that the
tattoos could cause problems with employment. According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), the number of people undergoing laser tattoo removal increased 43% from 2011 to 2012. This is consistent with a recent survey from the United Kingdom which found that nearly one-third of people suffer from tattoo regret.
Several years ago elaborate designs on the lower back became all the tattoo rage, until someone began calling them “tramp stamps.” Now I suspect that thousands of women (and maybe even a few unfortunate men) regret getting them. Other tattoo fads which have come and gone
include the barbed wire around men’s arms and the Chinese letters which may, or may not, mean what you think they do.
And it’s not just the common folk who regret their tattoos. Several celebrities have taken steps to have their tattoos removed. Johnny Depp committed the most common tattoo faux paux: he inked then-girlfriend Winona Ryder’s name on his shoulder. A short time later they broke up, prompting Depp to morph “Winona Forever” into “Wino Forever.” Megan Fox recently underwent laser treatments to remove the massive Marilyn Monroe tattoo on her arm. And some celebs have even embarrassingly misspelled their tattoos. Actress Hayden Panettiere misspelled the Italian phrase “Vivere senza rimpianti,” adding an extra “i” where it didn’t belong.
To read the rest of the article, click HERE to go to CNN.com
Here in Michigan, Spring has finally arrived! This past weekend was beautiful, a nice change from the freezing temperatures otherwise. A couple years ago I did a series of “Getting Your Body Ready For Bathing Suit Season” with the local Fox News affiliate. Here is a video on treating cellulite with Dermosonic:
I was recently interviewed by the National Enquirer about Monica Lewinsky. Apparently she is in the running for the upcoming Fox show Celebrity Swan. Here are my quotes:
And celebrity plastic surgeon Dr. Tony Youn, who has not treated Monica, tallied up what he thought her wish list would be. It includes $25,000 worth of liposuction, another $20,000 to tighten up her skin after the lipo, $2,000 for lip enhancement, $1,000 for earlobe shortening, $2,000 in filler injections, a $15,000 tummy tuck and $10,000 for a nose job.
“ROUND IT OUT WITH CELLULITE treatments for $3,000, an arm-lift for $10,000 and facial chemical peels and laser treatments for $2,000,” Dr. Youn told The ENQUIRER.
Check out their story with photos and a couple other plastic surgeons’ opinions HERE.
Have any of you heard of the extremely popular radio program called “Coast to Coast with George Noory?” It’s a late-night radio show dedicated to a wide variety of strange, supernatural, and fascinatingly different topics. I was fortunate enough to be a guest on this nationally syndicated program a couple times in the last two years. If you haven’t listened to it, it’s on in virtually every major city in the US late at night. You can find listings HERE.
So George has recently begun a talk show on Gaiam TV called “Beyond Belief With George Noory.” It’s a television version of his radio show, with each episode focusing on a specific interesting topic and guest. George and his producer invited me to be a guest on the program to discuss the weird, strange, and fascinating aspects of my favorite subject: plastic surgery. We taped the segment in their studio in Boulder, CO a couple weeks ago, and I think it turned out great. George and I discussed such topics as plastic surgery urban legends, black market plastic surgery, and the most popular plastic surgeries for men. We also discussed the trend of plastic surgery disasters by phony plastic surgeons. I think you’ll find the show is a lot of fun.
Here is the official promo: From black market procedures to extreme body modifications, plastic surgery has become the Wild West of modern medicine. Learn how to protect yourself from the dangers of plastic surgery with board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Anthony Youn in this interview with George Noory originally webcast April 5, 2013.
A cosmetic surgeon was charged Thursday with causing a former model’s death by liposuction.
Oleg Davie, 51, pleaded not guilty to manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide charges for operating on Isel Pineda in May of last year — even though she’d previously had a heart transplant and was on anti-rejection medication.
Pineda, 51, who was described by ex-husband Jeffrey Mayer as a “beautiful, stunning” person, suffered from heart disease and underwent heart transplant surgery in 2004. The procedure was performed by TV’S famed Dr. Mehmet Oz.
But before heading off on a planned vacation last year, Pineda felt unhappy with her appearance and decided she wanted to have liposuction done on her thighs. Davie agreed to perform the procedure, even though her cardiologist noted she had “no discernible body fat” when he examined her earlier that year, said Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes.
Pineda collapsed in Davies’ office after the outpatient procedure, and was rushed to Coney Island Hospital, where she was pronounced dead from a heart attack just hours after the procedure.
“Doctors are well aware of the fact that they are discouraged from performing liposuction and similar procedures on patients with heart disease,” said Hynes, noting that Davie didn’t even bother to reach out to Pineda’s cardiologist. “It is shameful that a medical professional would disregard his patient’s safety, putting her in serious danger.”
Davie, who faces up to 34 years in prison if convicted, was released on a $175,000 bail. He declined comment after his arraignment. He surrendered his medical license after the incident last year.
Until the government enacts laws prohibiting doctors from performing procedures outside of their formal residency and fellowship training, these types of stories will continue to occur and people will continue to suffer at the hands of docs who’re masquerading as real plastic surgeons. This doctor hasn’t been convicted yet, so the charges are still alleged, but horror stories are happening everywhere. If you are thinking about plastic surgery, do your homework!
For my article on How To Choose A Plastic Surgeon, click here.
The Doctor Oz Show recently aired a segment about plastic surgeons giving discounts for patients who have undergone a recent divorce. According to a survey conducted by the program, 19% of plastic surgeons offer discounts to women going under the knife! This trend is somewhat troubling to me, as a board-certified plastic surgeon. I often see patients who come to see me for surgery after undergoing a divorce, but would never try to discount surgery in order to subtly coerce them into undergoing the procedure. Sometimes these women (and occasionally men) are in vulnerable psychological states, and I strongly believe it’s wrong for a plastic surgeon to take advantage of that.
The show had an interesting discussion between two plastic surgeons and a psychologist that got a little heated at times. I agreed with many of the points the psychologist made, but completely reject her statement that most plastic surgeons don’t turn down patients for surgery when they aren’t psychologically good candidates. I turn down about one out of every 4-5 patients who come to see me, mostly because of unrealistic expectations or psychological issues.
You can catch snippets of the show on the Doctor Oz Show website links below:
Pretty gruesome photo, huh? Kim Kardashian has reportedly undergone the “Vampire Facial” on her Kim and Kourtney Take Miami television show. I didn’t see the episode, but I hear that she underwent the following: Kim’s blood was drawn, the platelets and growth factors were isolated, her face underwent microneedling, then the platelets and growth factors were placed onto her needled face. It’s described as the Vampire Facial. So what really is it?
I first started hearing the “vampire” term associated with the use of platelet-rich plasma for cosmetic use. Basically, blood is drawn from a patient, the platelets (which are chock-full of growth factors) are isolated from the blood by spinning it down, and these platelet-derived growth factors are then injected into the deeper layers of the skin. The idea is that the growth factors will stimulate new collagen production to act like a filling agent to fill out wrinkles. But does it work?
I’ve performed injections of platelet-rich plasma in several patients with modest results. I don’t perform it anymore, since I feel that the cost of the procedure outweighs the benefits. Some doctors remain gung-ho about the procedure, though, and have incorporated it with other filling agents.
One website that describes a cosmetic ‘vampire’ procedure is here.
Allure Magazine published a very interesting slideshow on the 11 most overrated cosmetic surgery procedures. Some of these procedures I’ve introduced on various programs, others I’ve cautioned against. At this time, I do not regularly perform any of these ‘overrated’ procedures. Here they are:
1. Vampire Facelift - I don’t perform this.
2. Laser Liposuction - Some doctors believe it tightens skin. Others don’t. If there is some tightening involved, it is pretty modest.
3. Stem Cell Facelift - The future of facelifts… but not the present.
4. Sculptra and Artefill for the lips - Don’t do this! Permanent lumps galore! Sculptra is great for the cheeks, though.
5. Silicone Cheek Implants - One doctor says it’s three surgeries: one to put them in, one to reposition them when they go out of place, and one to remove them altogether.
6. Ulthera – I’ve demo’d this on TV but don’t perform the procedure.
7. Fat Injections To The Breasts - I perform this procedure sparingly, only when absolutely indicated.
8. Brachioplasty – Great procedure for people with really droopy arms. Scar is too long for mild to moderate droopiness.
9. Butt Implants - I prefer using fat for enhancing the buttocks.
10. Zerona Fat Melting Laser - I believe it works, but expectations are difficult to meet. My patients lost an average of 3-4 inches when measuring four areas, and were still unhappy. It’s not like real lipo.
11. Foot Lifts - I am SO not interested in operating on feet!
To see the Allure slideshow, with accompanying doctor comments, click HERE.