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Ask Our Expert: What type of surgeon should I consult with for micro-fat transplantation to my face?

Thursday, April 10th, 2014

Question:  What type of surgeon should I consult with for micro-fat transplantation to my face?

Answer:

Dear reader,

There are a few important factors to consider when choosing a surgeon:

  • Board certification – It is always important to have surgery and/or procedures done by a physician who is board-certified in the specialty associated with that procedure.  For fat transplantation to the face, you would look for a surgeon who is board-certified in facial plastic and reconstructive surgery.
  • Experience – Once you locate a board-certified facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon, the next step is to find out how much experience the surgeon has with fat transfer procedures and particularly, micro-fat transplantation to the face.  Experience of greater than 20 cases would be essential.
  • Real Patient Photos – I would ask to see some pictures of patients in his or her practice who have had this procedure done by him or her.  Surgeons who are experienced in this area should have a collections of before and after photos to show their work.

 

G.D. Castillo,M.D., FACS
Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Center

 

 

 

 

 

Ask Our Expert – Outpatient Surgical Facility Vs. Hospital

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013

 

Question: Why do you prefer to perform surgery in an outpatient facility rather than the hospital?

Dr. Castillo’s state-of-the-art outpatient surgical facility.

Answer – Dr. Castillo: Actually, about 90 percent of cosmetic plastic surgical procedures are now done in outpatient surgical facilities for the following reasons:

 

Safety

The surgical procedures done in an outpatient surgical facility are done by a staff which is dedicated to doing only outpatient surgical procedures, so they are better focused, the staff is better experienced and dedicated to a single task.  This increases safety and provides the patient with knowledgeable people that are experienced in state-of-the-art outpatient surgical procedures.

*    Infection

The rate of infections in hospitals varies anywhere between 2 to 12 percent.  The rate of infection in outpatient surgical facilities is much smaller.  In fact, in our outpatient surgical facility, infection is a nearly non-existent problem and we say that because it only presents itself every few years.  That is, the rate is so small that it is difficult to quantify.  You may ask yourself, why?  The reasons are multiple but for the most part it has to do with carrying out procedures that are done in patients who are healthy and not suffering from disease and/or infection.  Also remember that in our facility, we do not do what is referred to as a “dirty case,” that is, procedures that involve entering the intestine, colon or areas that typically have bacteria.

*     Cost

The cost of care in a hospital facility is often unknown and extremely high.  The reasons have to do with hospitals having fees that are much higher than the real expenses to be able to cover the uninsured and establish artificially high rates that can then be applied to different insurances.  The reason why this is possible is that generally insurance have no choice but to pay a fee while in our facility, the choice is yours.  That is, you are the patient and you elect whether to pay or not pay the cost you know beforehand to be – that is, you approve of that cost.  What this results in is a great competitiveness and a much reduced cost for the surgical procedure.

*        Scale

When you go to a hospital, you immediately become part of literally hundreds or even thousands of people who may be at the hospital for one reason or another.  That makes you one of many and the services are going to be diluted, meaning you are not likely to have individual care.  In comparison, an outpatient surgical facility like ours has staff that is dedicated to only you and no other business to take care of during the time that you are at the facility.  Consequently, you have a staff member that remains with you throughout your surgical procedure.  There are no delays and this results in expedient care and a much reduced level of anxiety.

*     Comparative Services

Are the outpatient surgical facilities like ours able to take care of you in an emergency?  The answer is yes.  Our facility is equipped to respond to an emergency in the same manner as a hospital would be.  The level of response, equipment, drugs and supplies is par with a hospital.  What the outpatient surgery facility has that the hospital does not, is the experience to deal with the type of surgical procedure, that is, cosmetic surgery, which you are going to have.  This is an area, like in most areas, where expertise is not only important but is often the determinant for the degree of satisfaction and success that the procedure has.

So regarding the question, are you better off having your surgical procedure in a dedicated outpatient surgical facility doing cosmetic surgery only?  The answer is a qualified yes for the above reasons.

 

G.D. Castillo,M.D., FACS
Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Center

 

 

Melanoma – Are You At Risk?

Wednesday, May 11th, 2011

 

Are you at risk?

May is National Melanoma Awareness month.  Did you know that Melanoma takes more lives than any other skin disease?  Do you think you are at risk for this life-threatening skin cancer? Actually, anyone who is over-exposed to sunlight or UV radiation is at risk for melanoma and other forms of skin cancer.

Melanoma manifests in the pigment producing cells of the skin called melanocytes.  The purpose of melanocytes is to protect the skin from harmful UV light from the sun and tanning devices.  Because UV radiation reduces DNA’s ability to repair itself, when the skin becomes over-exposed to UV light, it can cause melanocytes to grow abnormally and develop into skin cancer.

Some people have a higher risk of getting melanoma than others. Did you know that even dark-skinned people and those who tan without burning can get melanoma?

Risk factors for melanoma sited by Mayo Clinic:

  • Fair skin: Having less pigment (melanin) in your skin means you have less protection from damaging UV radiation. If you have blond or red hair, light-colored eyes, and you freckle or sunburn easily, you’re more likely to develop melanoma than is someone with a darker complexion. But melanoma can develop in people with skin of color.
  • A history of sunburn: One or more severe, blistering sunburns as a child or teenager can increase your risk of melanoma as an adult.
  • Excessive ultraviolet (UV) light exposure: Exposure to UV radiation, which comes from the sun and from tanning beds, can increase the risk of skin cancer, including melanoma.
  • Living closer to the equator or at a higher elevation: People living closer to the earth’s equator, where the sun’s rays are more direct, experience higher amounts of UV radiation, as compared with those living in higher latitudes. In addition, if you live at a high elevation you’re exposed to more UV radiation.
  • Having many moles or unusual moles: Having more than 50 ordinary moles on your body indicates an increased risk of melanoma: Also, having an unusual type of mole increases the risk of melanoma. Known medically as dysplastic nevi, these tend to be larger (greater than 1/5 inch or 5 millimeters) than normal moles and have irregular borders and a mixture of colors.
  • A family history of melanoma: If a close relative, such as a parent, child or sibling, has had melanoma, you have a greater chance of developing it too.
  • Weakened immune system: People with weakened immune systems have an increased risk of skin cancer. This includes people who have HIV/AIDS and those who have undergone organ transplants.

Though Melanoma is the deadliest of skin cancers, the rate for survival significantly improves with early detection. It is important to become familiar with the appearance of your freckles, moles, spots and other skin markings so that you are able to identify changes should they occur.  During your self-examination, watch for changes in the size, texture, or color of moles, freckles or spots,  shiny pink or red lesions that appear suddenly or slowly grow in clusters, or a sore that does not heal.  A spot or growth that continues to itch, hurt, crust, scab, fade, or bleed can also be a warning sign that will require a visit to your dermatologist.

Through-out the year there are free skin cancer screenings available through the American Academy of Dermatology.  Information on these local screenings can be found at www.aad.org/public/exams/screenings/index.html.

To reduce your chances of developing skin cancer, Dr. Castillo, Medical Director of Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Clinic suggests following these simple sun safety rules:

  • Sun rays are the strongest between the hours of 10 AM – 4 PM, avoid exposing your skin during these times whenever possible.
  • Practice the Australian slogan – “SLIP, SLOP, SLAP & WRAP” – slip on a shirt, slop on some sunscreen, slap on a hat and wrap-around sunglasses.
  • Choose a sunscreen that is labeled “broad-spectrum” UVA/AVB protection. The ingredient label should list titanium dioxide or micronized zinc oxide, 4% of higher and an SPF of 45 or higher.
  • Most rays can penetrate through the clouds, so use sunscreen every day of the year, even on cloudy days.
  • Re-apply sunscreen every 2 hours, while exposed to the sun.
  • UVA rays are highly present all year, even on snowy or cloudy days. These rays penetrate deeper into the skin than UVB rays. Therefore, UVA rays may not give us the signal (red, tanned skin…) that we have been over-exposed to the sun. Remember, UVA rays can penetrate car windows and loose woven clothing as well. It is important to use sunscreens on exposed skin all year round.
  • Keep skin well hydrated by drinking plenty of water and using quality moisturizing skin care products. Dry skin is more easily affected by the sun.

For Children Under One Year Of Age:

  • Babies need extra protection from the sun, even if they have naturally dark skin.
  • Keep them out of direct sun light; use shaded areas, an umbrella, or stroller canopy.
  • Dress them in light weight clothing that covers the whole body. Use a wide brim hat to protect their ears and face.
  • When applying a sunscreen, apply a small amount to a limited area and watch for a reaction before continuing to apply it all over an infant. Choosing a physical sun block with titanium dioxide or micronized zinc oxide, rather than a chemical sunscreen may help to avoid a skin reaction.

As the Medical Skincare and Laser Specialist for Cosmetic Plastic Surgery and Skin Restoration Center, I am available to answer any additional questions regarding sun-protection you may have. You may contact me at both our Savoy (Champaign-Urbana area) location.

Savoy location at 217-359-7508

Roxanne Grace
Skincare and Laser Specialist
G. D. Castillo, M.D.
COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY

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