Plastic and reconstructive surgery … in brief

New web-based research has quantified the attractiveness of the female form.

Using morphing software, German researchers manipulated the features of one woman into 243 variations with differing leg lengths, weights, bust sizes, and hip and waist widths. Then more than 34,000 people judged the attractiveness of the images. While the woman’s face remained exactly the same in all of the photos, researchers found that participants judged those images with smaller waist-to-hip ratios and lower body weights as being more attractive, confirming previous findings that these features are the most important predictors for an ‘ideal’ figure. This study appears in the March 2009 issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, the official medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

By The Numbers:

– Nearly 302,000 liposuction procedures were performed in 2007, according to ASPS statistics.

Doing a Double-Take

A new study takes a unique approach to evaluate the efficacy of different face lifting techniques on two sets of identical twins. Four different surgeons performed four different techniques (lateral SMASectomy with extensive skin undermining, composite rhytidectomy, SMAS-platysma flap with bidirectional lift, and endoscopic mid-face lift with open anterior platysmaplasty) on each of the four patients. An independent surgeon then photographed the patients at one, six and ten years postoperatively. The overall questions examined by the researchers, who were all ASPS Member Surgeons from Texas, New York, California and Maryland, were if there is a ‘best’ technical approach to facial rejuvenation and whether different technical approaches produce different aesthetic results. While researchers did have some differing opinions, it was noted at the 10-year mark that ‘everybody had a really good result and there were more similarities than differences [among the siblings].” This study appears in the March 2009 issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, the official medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

By The Numbers:

– According to ASPS statistics, more that 118,000 facelift procedures were performed in 2007, a 14% increase from the previous year.

Sutureless Smiles

A new article describes a unique sutureless skin closure technique for cleft lip repair. The authors, from New York, suggest that this method allows young patients to feed, use pacifiers and bathe immediately, does not require them to be restrained in any way and does not call for continued wound care. Traditionally, surgeons use sutures–either nonabsorbable, which require removal and brief anesthetics, or dissolvable, which may leave some permanent scarring. While it’s known that using tissue adhesives for skin closure is a successful method, the authors of this article have developed a novel technique for adhesive application. Suspended sutures are used along the incision line to provide traction, but they are not tied off. Then, after the adhesive is applied but before it is dried, the sutures are removed. This article appears in the March 2009 issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, the official medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

By The Numbers:

– According to ASPS statistics, more that 18,000 cleft lip and palette procedures were performed in 2007.

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