Achieving A New Face With Toxins, Laser, & Peels


Jo resizeA Family Savvy reader asked Dr. Herzog about various options for facial rejuvenation. In today’s post, Dr. Herzog continues the discussion that she also addressed in these previous posts:  Fillers: Non-surgical Options For Rejuvenating An Aging Face and Face Lift or Fillers? Best Options For The Aging Face.

Dr. Jo Herzog

Over the past few weeks, we have talked about different things that can be done to rejuvenate an aging face. Last week, we discussed several of the fillers that are used to “fill” and add volume to the lines that we see when the face is at rest. Today, we will look at how to treat lines caused by movement – wrinkles that occur when the face is not at rest. These are the lines across the forehead, the “11’s” between the eyes, and crow’s feet (lines around the eyes).  Some of the lines around the lips fall into this category. Lastly, we will briefly discuss a few options to improve facial texture, coloration, and tightening.

Lines and wrinkles:

While fillers are used to fill in lines we see when a face is at rest, toxins are used to treat lines and wrinkles that occur with movement. These toxins include Botox and other newer yet similar drugs, Dysport and Xeomin. These drugs all work the same way but have minor variations in structure, in how they are mixed and stored, and in the units measured. I have used them all and find that results last about the same length of time if administered by a qualified injector.

Studies show these drugs to be equal in effect (with only one study that I know of showing Dysport to be superior for crow’s feet). These drugs stop the movement of muscles and thus the formation of wrinkles caused by this movement.

Injecting these drugs is a simple procedure involving several small “prick-like” injections. The cost varies based on how much a patient needs, but the average person’s cost ranges from $200’s to $500’s. We physicians who use a large amount of a particular toxin can usually buy that toxin at a better rate and pass the savings along to our patients. I often have my Dysport at 20% off for special events.

As with other injectables, more expensive does not necessarily mean better, and one should beware of extremely deep discounts. Before getting these procedures, patients should ask who is doing the injecting and where the product is coming from.  It is nice to see the bottle in the room when your injections are being drawn up. There is no down time with this treatment.

Facial texture, coloration  and tightening:

Facial texture, tone, and color can be improved with lasers and chemical peels. My favorite laser is the Fractional CO2.  I can use this for slight tightening and smoothing of skin, elimination or improvement of acne scars, and for ridding the face of dark spots and wrinkling. Many years can be taken off with one treatment.

With the Fractional CO2, there is some down time. Most of my patients stay home for a couple of days after this procedure. If you desire similar effects to a lesser degree, you can try TCA peels which are less aggressive than is the laser.

If you live in the Birmingham area and would like to talk one-on-one about how to look fabulous for 2014, we will be having private personal consultations on January 9th, by appointment (205-824-4441). We will remind you about this again after the holidays and hope to have some surprises that we will announce then, too.

Have a great week and be well,

Dr. Jo

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