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Press Release: December 15, 2003 From the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery

From Restylane® To Facelifts - Checking Credentials Paramount When Choosing Cosmetic Plastic Surgery

Safety Tips from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - With the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) approval of Restylane ® on Dec. 12, and with other fillers on the horizon, the arsenal of cosmetic plastic surgery treatments to attack wrinkles, furrows and folds continues to grow.  For those interested in these new treatments, it is paramount to consider the procedure as they would any medical treatment and check their physician's credentials.

Whether considering injectables or facelifts, patients must determine that their physician is qualified to perform the procedure. Injectables such as Restylane and Botox ® are medical procedures that should be performed by a qualified physician who understands neuromuscular and facial anatomy as well as side effects of the product.

With the growing popularity of surgical and less-invasive cosmetic plastic surgery treatments - more than 6.5 million last year - comes the increase in unqualified practitioners stepping up to take advantage of the growing number of patients.

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"More and more patients are seeking the care of a plastic surgeon to repair facial damage after being treated by someone who does not have the proper training," explains Rod Rohrich, MD , president, American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). "In most states, a licensed physician can perform cosmetic plastic surgery without being board-certified in plastic surgery. Select a plastic surgeon who has a wide breadth of experience not only with injectables, but with surgery - one who will look at you comprehensively."

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons recommends patients follow these guidelines when choosing any cosmetic plastic surgery procedure.

· Check Board Certification: Determine if your physician is certified by a board approved by The American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS). Members of the ASPS are certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery, the only board recognized by ABMS that certifies physicians in plastic surgery of the face and all areas of the body. This ensures that the plastic surgeon has graduated from an accredited medical school and completed at least five years of additional residency, usually three years of general surgery and two years of plastic surgery.

· Ensure Safe Facilities: Everyone who chooses cosmetic plastic surgery has the right to a safe procedure. Injectables should be administered in a setting with appropriate medical personnel and necessary equipment to observe patients and manage potential complications, as well as provide for the disposal of medical waste as required by Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations. ASPS requires all members who perform surgery under anesthesia to do so in an accredited, licensed or Medicare-approved facility.

· Require a Medical Evaluation: When considering a cosmetic plastic surgery procedure, consult with a physician for an evaluation, as well as a full medical history, to determine what is most appropriate.

· Be Informed: Speak with friends and family about the procedure as well as with a physician. When a treatment decision is made co-operatively between the physician and patient, the physician should explain the risks, benefits, alternatives, and reasoning for the proposed treatment, after which an informed consent document should be signed by the patient.

· Look For Specialty Group Affiliation:  Membership in the ASPS ensures that not only is the plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, but that the plastic surgeon regularly attends continuing medical education courses and adheres to a strict code of ethics.  For referrals to ABPS-certified plastic surgeons call the ASPS at (888) 4-PLASTIC (888-475-2784) or visit www.plasticsurgery.org

· Ask Questions:

* Are you certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery?

* What is the best procedure for me?

* Where and how will you perform my procedure?

* What are the risks involved with my procedure?

* Will my procedure need to be repeated?

* How much downtime should I expect?

* Do you have hospital privileges to perform cosmetic surgery?

* How much will my procedure cost?

* Are financing options available?

ASPS, founded in 1931, is the largest plastic surgery organization in the world and the foremost authority on cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgery. ASPS represents physicians certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) or The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. For referrals to ABPS-certified plastic surgeons in your area and to learn more about cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgery, call the ASPS at (888) 4-PLASTIC (1-888-475-2784) or visit www.plasticsurgery.org .

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Awakening BeautyAnthony Napoleon, the author of Awakening Beauty: An Illustrated Look at Mankind's Love and Hatred of Beauty, is a psychologist who has spent many years studying beauty and its impact upon both individuals and society. He has worked with both cosmetic surgery patients and beauty pageant contestants as well as conducting original research into the field. Awakening Beauty is an unprecedented exposé on the subject of beauty. It is both entertaining and thought provoking, a combination that is as unique as it is telling about the author's approach to the subject of this book. The reader is taken backstage into the worlds of beauty pageants, plastic surgery, trophy wives, murderous rage, wardrobe, makeup, Bill Clinton, the events of September Eleven and other provocative topics where beauty has had its effect. Awakening Beauty invites the reader into a world that is as interesting as it is frightening. Readers are transformed as the author shepherds them from their world into his unique perspective and expertise on beauty. Awakening Beauty includes over one hundred tantalizing photographs and illustrations. Awakening Beauty is a compendium of some of the most interesting facts in print. The subject matter of the book along with the author's unique approach to it makes this book a "must read." Get ready to re-think everything you thought you knew about beautiful women and physical attractiveness.

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