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News briefs from the American Society of Plastic Surgery

Faces Lose Volume, but Lower Eyelids Get Fatter with Age, Study Finds

Have you ever wondered how those pesky under-eye bags got there? This study examined why lower eyelids get bulgy with age by looking at the faces of people in three different age groups (12 29 years old, 30 54, and 55 to 80) via magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). In the study, plastic surgeons discovered that while the rest of the face loses volume with age; lower eyelids actually get fatter. This significant increase in orbital fat is the primary cause of under-eye bags. Previous studies have hypothesized that the "bags" were caused by swelling from fluid buildup or sagging/drooping of the eyelid/upper cheek area. This study confirms that excision or removal of the fat, during eyelid surgery, not just repositioning, plays a clear role in the treatment of under eye bags. More than 240,000 eyelid surgeries were performed in 2007, according to ASPS statistics. Eyelid surgery was the fourth most popular surgical cosmetic procedure last year. (Study title: Magnetic Resonance Imaging Characterization of Orbital Changes with Age and Associated Contributions to Lower Eyelid Prominence)

Plastic Surgery after Gastric Bypass: Who's Doing it?

This study looked at the socioeconomic factors influencing post-bariatric surgery patients in their decision to have body contouring. Although a previous PRS journal study found that the majority of post-bariatric patients want to have body contouring; this study revealed only 11.3 percent of gastric bypass patients actually have body contouring. Additionally, this study found that patients further out from their gastric bypass surgery, with a larger change in BMI were more likely to have body contouring. Of the 105 patients who had body contouring after gastric bypass surgery, 35 patients paid out-of-pocket for their surgery and 68 had insurance that covered all or some of their initial plastic surgery. Nearly 67,000 body contouring procedures after massive weight loss were performed in 2007, up 2 percent since 2006, according to ASPS statistics. (Study title: Patterns of Plastic Surgical Use after Gastric Bypass: Who Can Afford it and Who Will Return for More)

Fat Removal with Innovative Technique Generates More Effective, Healthier Fat for Injections

Fat injections have long been used for rejuvenating the face, lip, hand and body. As a soft-tissue filler it is abundant, readily available and inexpensive. One of the main drawbacks; however, is the high rate of absorption over time, sometimes up to 70 percent of the injected volume. For long-term survival, the fat must remain alive and healthy before implantation. This study looked into two fat removal techniques and found one technique to be superior over regular liposuction because the fat collected had more healthy and viable cells. More than 46,000 fat injections were performed in 2007, according to ASPS statistics. (Study title: Coleman Technique for Fat Grafts)


Contact: ASPS Media Relations
American Society of Plastic Surgeons

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