Enjoy Every Sandwich

Enjoy Every SandwichAs those of you who read my blog know, I am a music fanatic.  I listen to all types, English and Spanish.  My operating room is never silent, and I think it helps the patients at Yager Esthetics feel more comfortable when they enter the surgical suite.

Warren Zevon, a musician most famous for “Werewolves of London”, died of cancer.  He knew the end was coming, and that despite his fame and success, he could not stop it.  He decided to write an album, “Enjoy Every Sandwich”, to deal with the situation.

The title implies that we never know when the end is coming, so we should treasure every moment, even eating a sandwich.   This is great advice.

As a board certified plastic surgeon, I know a lot of things about a lot of things.  I eat right, exercise, don’t smoke, rarely drink, and see my own doctor every year.  I realize, however, that today could be my last day on earth.  No one gets a guarantee.

My advice today is to be grateful for the blessings you have, and to not be angry about what you do not.  Tell the people in your love who mean something to you how you feel, and do not stand on pride and resolve your conflicts.

Enjoy every sandwich.

Botox, Dysport, & Xeomin

Nearly 20 years ago, I watched the former Chairman of Plastic Surgery at Columbia Presbyterian, Dr. Norman Hugo, place a needle in the forehead of a woman with an electric wire attached so that he was sure it was in the muscle. The solution he injected was Botox, a medication that relaxes muscles. Now, Botox is a household name used by many, a billion dollar drug with many uses. Erasing dynamic lines, stopping sweating, relaxing muscles, treating lazy eyes, and the list goes on.

The techniques for using the muscle relaxers have advanced, and good predictable results can be obtained. Since I opened Yager Esthetics in 1997, the price of botox for physicians has gone up significantly, mainly due to demand and a lack of other similar products. All of this changed when Dysport, another Botox-like product hit the market about 2 years ago. I have used this product, and find it also works well, with pricing similar to Botox.

On November 1, 2011, a new product from Merz comes out-Xeomin. It is supposed to work as effectively as Botox, but with a true reduction in cost that I can pass along to my patients. I have been chosen as one of the first centers to receive the product. It will not be available to other doctors until February, 2012. It is FDA approved with the same indications as the other products.

I will update you with the results in 4-6 months, or you can call the office to be among the first to try Xeomin. I am very excited about its potential.

image: Istockphoto.com

How to fix chubby cheeks

More and more often, patients at Yager Esthetics are coming in to talk about fullness in the face. The area in question is usually just below the cheek bones, in the side of the face. The key to fixing this problem is knowing the cause.
Sometimes the face appears full because a patient is simply overweight. In cases like this, losing a few pounds can resolve the issue without surgery or expense. If the facial fat is out of proportion to the body fat, sometimes careful liposuction with very small instruments is appropriate.
Plastic Surgeons are doctors, and we need to rule out medical causes for this appearance as well. Mumps, as well as other viral infections can cause a swelling of the parotid gland ( a gland in your cheek that helps produce saliva in your mouth), and can need medical therapy.
The parotid gland can also develop tumors or cancer, and we always are careful in our examination. If any doubt exists, we can do an MRI or CT scan. This is rarely seen in my practice.
The cause that I get the most satisfaction out of curing is called the buccal fat fad. Around the parotid gland, there is a special layer of fat. If it is excessive, we can remove it through a small opening inside of the mouth. This leaves no visible scar on the face. The results can be extraordinary.
You can test this for yourself with a good mirror. Simply open your mouth while looking into the mirror, push in right under the cheek bone and see if a large bulge appears inside the cheek in your mouth.
I will be posting before and after pictures, as well as pictures of the fat on the website, www.dryager.com, in the next month. If you want more information, call us for a consultation about buccal fat.

Image: Gettyimages

Reality TV and Plastic Surgery

I was recently approached by a television production company about doing a reality TV show in my office. The idea was to follow patients through the consult, surgery and recovery processes. The drama would include a profile of Yager Esthetics and interviews with me, the staff, and anesthesiologists. They offered real money to film a test of 6 episodes here in Washington Heights.

In researching the production company, they were legitimate, with several programs that are currently on television. I decided not to go through with it.

The purpose of my practice, Yager Esthetics, is to serve the Hispanic community with the highest level of safety and professionalism. To have cameras, interruptions in my schedule, and inconvenience to my patients is just not acceptable. I am blessed to be busy, and would be unable to attend to as many people that need me.

I guess stardom will have to wait. Maybe in the future, if the right offer came along in the Spanish language, I would consider it. To have a wider platform to educate my community on the does and don’ts of plastic surgery is intriguing. Until then, you will just have to come and see me in person.

Social Media and Plastic Surgery

Social Media and Plastic SurgeryI have to admit, I have never been into social media. I do not go on Facebook as often, do not spend hours tweeting and following people on Twitter, and do not even utilize Youtube as much as I should. My practice, Yager Esthetics, is very active on all of these fronts. Why? Because it is a way to reach out and connect with a new generation of patients.

When I founded Yager Esthetics in 1997, social media wasn’t even a blip on the radar. I was busy building a practice and taking care of the Hispanic community and did not give it a second thought. As my practice expanded and grew, more patients were interested in connecting with me and what I did. We expanded the website, www.dryager.com, and then I started blogging every week.

Last year, we started our Facebook page for Yager Esthetics, as well as a Youtube channel and a Twitter account, (drjyager & yspany). The response has been good, and we are now going to offer more to our followers and those who like us. One of our clients told us that we should consider setting up an Instagram page next. We could share pictures of some plastic surgeries we’ve done that day, which might drive more business in. She also told us that there are ways to get more instagram followers for free which is good to know. The more followers, the more professional the business appears to the public. Perhaps that’s the next thing we’ll look into to advertise our business. We are even aware of companies that can help businesses manage their social media reach, for example, a company similar to SidesMedia specializes in helping businesses manage their social media growth and audience engagement.

We have not even begun to tap the power of this outreach, and I look forward to creating something special that lives up to the high standards that we have created with our Yspa Medi Spa and Plastic Surgery and Laser Centers.

So, visit our Facebook page, follow me on Twitter, and check out the videos on Youtube. I promise to be more Social this year!