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Monthly Archives: May 2017


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Breast Lift Incisions Explained

I wrote some blogs on breast surgery a few weeks ago and then took a break to focus on summer sun precautions.   Now I want to finish the breast series with this blog on scarring and incisions.  Scarring is always a concern when choosing a cosmetic surgery. We want to be able to focus on the beautiful results of the surgery, not the incision scars it may leave behind. Fortunately, with a Breast Lift, there are a variety of incisions, some more inconspicuous than others. However, different techniques may be required based on how much sagging you want corrected. The incision I recommend will be based on your personal goals, existing breast tissue, and the amount of excess skin to be removed. Here is an explanation of each of the possibilities.

Minimal Sagging: Crescent Incision
This incision is very small and traces around the upper half edge of the areola. While this is minimal scarring sounds ideal, it can take away only a minimum amount of skin. This makes it only an option for patients who have very little sagging to correct. For this reason, it is the least frequent incision technique and is usually only done in combination with a breast augmentation.
Mild Sagging: Peri Areolar or “Donut” Incision
The Peri Areolar incision is a circular incision tracing around the outer edge of the areola. This technique can also be used to reduce the size of the areola if that is desired. Like the Crescent incision, this “Donut” incision is commonly performed along with a Breast Augmentation and can address mild sagging.

Moderate Sagging: Vertical or “Lollipop” Incision
Two incisions are required for this technique, as it can accomplish more extensive reshaping of sagging breasts. They form the pattern of a lollipop, hence the nickname. The first incision is around the outer edge of the areola and the second runs down vertically from the bottom center of the areola to the underlying crease where the breast meets the torso, called the inframammary fold. This is a very common incision technique since it allows for the removal of a moderate amount of excess skin and reshaping of the entire breast. Fortunately, these scars are easily hidden in bras and bikini tops.

Extensive Sagging: Inverted T or “Anchor” Incision
Dramatic results for reshaping the breasts are available with the Inverted T incision. Getting its nickname as the “Anchor” lift because of the incision pattern, this technique involves 3 scars. One is around the outer edge of the areola, then another is down vertically from the bottom outer edge of the areola to the breast crease, and the last one is hidden in the horizontal crease of the inframammary fold. This technique allows for the removal of a significant amount of excess skin and sagging tissue. It is also used when the Breast Lift is combined with a Breast Reduction. This gives beautiful correction for reshaping pendulous breasts, which is when the nipple is below the edge of the crease of the inframammary fold and it is pointing downward.

In my expert hands, these incisions will be as minimal as possible, and over time, with your proper care these scars will fade. Regardless of which incision technique is required, your scars will be concealed and far from your mind when you see how lovely your lifted breasts look in your clothes and bathing suit. Contact me for a consultation at www.davinciplastic.com.

Steven Davison M.D.
Board Certified Plastic/Reconstructive Surgeon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SKIN CANCER PROTECTION and PREVENTION

Summer is on its way and people will get more exposure to the suns rays than any other time of year. We’ve all heard the word of caution about too much sun causing skin cancer, but specifically it’s the Ultraviolet (UV) light exposure that is overwhelmingly the most frequent cause of skin cancer.

Since May is Skin Cancer Detection & Prevention Month, and skin cancer affects more than 1 million people in the United States each year, I thought I’d dedicate some time to the topic.

Skin Cancer Causes

Other than frequent, unprotected sun exposure, some significant causes of skin cancer include:
– The frequent use of tanning booths, which, like the sun, expose the skin to harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays.
– Immune system compromise, which impairs the body’s ability to fight disease. A suppressed immune system affects the ability of the body to regenerate and repair at the cellular level.

– Ways to improve the immune system are to stress less and laugh more, drink more water and less alcohol, eat antioxidant rich foods rather than empty calories and sugar, as well as take a probiotic to promote beneficial gut flora.
– Regular exposure to electromagnetic wave of high energy and very short wavelength, such as Xrays.

– And exposure to certain chemicals, such as arsenic and those in tar, oils and soot.

 

People with Greater Risk
Besides outside environmental factors, certain people are predisposed to skin cancer. These are characteristics of people who are at greater risk:
Fair skin that burns easily from the sun exposure and freckles easily
Blond or redheads with blue or green eyes
Depleted skin pigmentation, such as from certain genetic disorders like albinism and xeroderma pigmentosum.
Previous cancer or close family members who have had skin cancer
Birthmark or a large mole, or numerous moles and unusual moles that developed later in life
Experienced a severe sunburn in childhood

“ABCD’s” of Cancer Detection
– Asymmetry: one side not looking like the other
– Border irregularity: rough, jagged or bumpy edges
– Color: mixture of black, tan, brown, blue, red, or white
– Diameter: larger than the size of a pencil eraser (about 6 mm across) or noticeable increase in size

 

Kinds of Skin Cancer
The skin is the largest organ in the body and skin cancer is the most common of all cancers. There are three major kinds of skin cancer:
– Melanoma,
– Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC)
– Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC)
Melanoma is actually the most frequent cancer in people age 25 to 29 years. About a third of all melanoma are diagnosed before the age of 50, although most skin cancers are diagnosed between 50 and 75 years old. Squamous cell carcinomas and basal cell carcinomas, which are the vast majority of skin cancers, are more common in older people. Unlike the Melanomas, the BCCs or SCC usually do not spread to other parts of the body.

Prevention
It is important to self check using the “ABCD’s” and to regularly be checked by a dermatologist. A doctor can send away a biopsy of a questionable mole or marking to tell if it’s cancerous. Fortunately, you can reduce your risk of getting skin cancer. This is one of the main reasons why I recommend safeguarding yourself when you enjoy the beautiful weather with sunscreen, protective clothing, sunglasses and a hat.

Prevention and early detection are key with skin cancer. Enjoy the beautiful summer weather, but please do so safely. If you have any more questions, please consult your dermatologist.

Steven Davison M.D.
Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Safe Sun Protection Part 2

The sun provides some wonderful health benefits, but as I’ve recently shared in previous blogs, there is good reason to protect yourself from its skin damaging UV rays. Here are the main ways to protect yourself when in the sun.

Sunscreen
Sunscreen can definitely be helpful in protecting your skin from the UV rays, but some sunscreen has toxic chemicals that should be avoided. For example, a recent study published in Environmental Science Technology has demonstrated that the common sunscreen ingredients, methoxycinnamate, oxybenzone and PABA are estrogenic chemicals linked to cancer.

Mineral sunscreens are preferable, as they are considered “broad spectrum” and protect against both UVB and UVA rays. They contain titanium or zinc, which do not breakdown in sunlight and are therefore more effective at also blocking UVA rays. These minerals are non allergenic and not usually absorbed into the bloodstream so they don’t affect the body’s hormones.

Clothing
You can’t go wrong by wearing a hat, sunglasses and protective clothing when in the sun. There is even special clothing that is enhanced with greater protection against UV radiation and laundry detergent that adds sunscreen to your clothes. The laundry detergent doesn’t add much, but a plain white Tshirt that normally only provides 8 SPF can be boosted up to 15 SPF with a sunscreen detergent. The main benefit to SPF laundry detergent is that it’ll help keep some SPF in the garment for longer, as it does tend to start to slowly wear off after 3 or 4 washings.

UPF vs SPF
Most commonly you’ll see the terms UPF (Ultra Violet Protection) on sun protective clothing, while the sunscreens say SPF (Sun Protection Factor). UPF measures a fabric’s protection against both UVA and UVB. Sunscreen’s SPF only rates its protection against UVB rays, which cause sunburn.
What does the number mean?

A UPF rating of 25 means that only 1/25th (or 4%) of the UV radiation can penetrate the fabric, giving a 96% protection against both UVA and UVB rays. A minimum UPF 15 clothing is good (94% protection), but 50+ (98%) is excellent, especially considering the effectiveness of sun protection will lessen over time, you’ll have longer lasting protection.

Regarding the measurement of sun protection, SPF is a bit more variable as the number is calculated based on increasing the amount of time you can spend in the sun before getting sunburned. For example, if the average person would burn after 20 minutes in the sun, a sunscreen with SPF 30 is supposed to protect against sunburn for about 10 hours. This effectiveness varies widely because some people’s skin burns more easily, the mid day hours have more intense UVB rays, and even most water repellant sunscreens wear off with sweat and water. Also, the SPF calculation does not account for the UVA rays.

Diet

Most people haven’t considered that foods and supplements that can actually help protect your skin, too. The American Cancer Society states that oxidative damage can increase your cancer risk, including skin cancer. Fortunately, there are lots of delicious, healthy foods that help reduce oxidation.

These are some suggestions for foods and the antioxidants they contain that help your skin:
Salmon and fish oil contain astaxanthin and omega 3 fatty acids.

  • Green and white tea contains catechins.
  • Red wine, blueberries and red grapes contain resveratrol.
  • Almonds, asparagus and pumpkin seeds contains Vitamin E
  • Carrots and red bell peppers contain Beta carotene.

I hope you take these sun protection tips and have a safe, fun summer!

Steven Davison M.D.
Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer Sun Fun – Part 2

I shortened my last blog so I could wrap up with the UVA/UVB info that is so often mis-understood.  It is important to understand the following things:

The Long (UVA) and Short (UVB) of It
While UVA rays are longer and less intense than UVB, we are exposed to more throughout our lifetimes because they are equally present during all daylight hours throughout the year.

UVA can also penetrate clouds and, unlike UVB, can go through glass. This is why it’s important to consider sun protection even when you’re not at the beach or pool.

It has been thought that while both play a major part in skin aging, UVB has been the main contributor to skin cancer. UVB is the chief cause of skin reddening and sunburn, affecting mostly the superficial layers of skin.

But even though UVB has a more concentrated negative effect, UVA causes cumulative damage over years and years, which may also initiate the development of skin cancer. Most skin cancers occur in the basal layer of the epidermis and studies have shown UVA damages cells in this layer, as well.

Bottom line is that while the sun provides wonderful health benefits, we still need to take precautions to only receive its benefits and not its damaging effects. In my next blog, I’ll continue the subject and talk about how to protect yourself, including helpful clothing, sunscreen and diet tips.
If you’d like more information on rejuvenating your skin, visit www.davinciplastic.com.

 

Steven Davison M.D.
Board Certified Plastic/Reconstructive Surgeon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Schedule Your Consultation With Dr. Davison

The initial consultation with your surgeon is critical! It should always be face to face with your surgeon during which time he/she listens closely to your concerns. Dr. Davison believes this time spent with you is critical to both you and to him. It is during the consultation that he comes to fully understand your concerns, evaluates them correctly and is then able to make the recommendations and develop the treatment plan thats right for you. Dr. Davison invests the time to sit down and talk to you face-to-face.

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3301 New Mexico Ave. Suite 236

Washington D.C.