Considering cosmetic dermatology? Take your time in learning about and evaluating procedures, especially those that make permanent changes. For example, I see many people who get permanent eyeliner-type tattoos and want to know how to get them removed 3 or 4 years later. Although some are delighted with permanent cosmetic procedures, ideally you should consider something that lasts at most 2 years. Most treatments that we offer last 6–12 months.
Most cosmetic dermatology procedures are minimally invasive. Some of the more popular procedures include:
- Botox® injections – treatments that relax facial muscles that cause unwanted lines and wrinkles
- Restylane – a filling agent that smoothes out lines and wrinkles
- Intense pulsed light (IPL) therapy – a laser-like device that treats wrinkles, evens skin tone, removes hair, and corrects some sun damage
- Alpha-hydroxy acid treatments or “peels” – acids applied to the face that remove outer layers, increasing skin fitness and rejuvenation
- Microdermabrasion – fine crystals projected onto the skin to treat fine lines, some pigmentation spots, acne, and acne scars
- Mesotherapy – tiny injections of medications into the middle (meso) skin layer to smooth cellulite and remove fat tissue
When considering a cosmetic dermatology procedure, here are 10 questions you should ask:
- Does a board-certified physician perform the treatments?
- What happens if there are complications or unwanted side effects?
- How long has your clinic been providing these treatments?
- How many treatments has your clinic provided by a board-certified physician?
- Are there “before” and “after” pictures of patients who have been treated in your office?
- Who is the medical director of your clinic, and is he/she board certified?
- Can I have a consultation with a board-certified physician?
- Does the medical director treat patients at your clinic, or does your clinic use their name and credentials in exchange for financial compensation?
- Before treatment, is a complete medical history taken and reviewed by a board-certified physician?
- Does anyone in this clinic have any sanctions filed with the applicable state board agencies?
You should never feel pressured into accepting a treatment. Good physicians want their patients to be relaxed and well informed.