Category: healthy skin

Non-Surgical Facelift??

With the huge demand for ways to stave off the signs of age medical technology is working overtime. First there were facelifts – but a rhytidectomy (face lift) has significant down time, risk of infection, scarring and is very expensive. A facelift is normally the lower 2/3 of the face and if you add a forehead lift and or blepharoplasty (eye lift) the price will go up.  Typically it runs $20,000 – $50,000. So options were explored for ways to get a more youthful appearance without the full surgery. CO2 resurfacing can smooth the skin and get rid of brown spots, but it doesn’t remove excess skin or give you that “tuck”.

The next evolution uses radio frequency most commonly sold under the trade name Thermage. It markets that it can tighten and smooth the skin non-surgically.  While it can lift and tighten it won’t remove excess skin like surgery can. Thermage describes its Ideal Patent as:

  • Patients who are not candidates for surgical face lift
  • Middle-aged women beginning to show signs of neck/brow/eyelid sagging
  • Middle-aged women beginning to show signs of drooping jowls/cheek folds
  • Patients who want to achieve subtle lift or tightening of the face without invasive surgery
  • Patients who have had a prior face lift and desire further tightening of the skin.
Cost runs from $1000 – $5000 depending on the area to be treated. The skin will look improved immediately but results will continue to improve for several months. By the results from their own studies, about 50% of the clients report being happy to very happy with the results. There is generally no down time or skin discoloration. They state that typically results last about 2 years. The results are permanent but that the natural aging process could indicate the need for one or two maintenance treatments. While this has been a popular service, the discomfort and success rates triggered more research.
Another new technique is using ultrasonic sound waves to transfer heat into the skin in a manner similar to radio frequency. The surface of the skin is not damaged but tiny micro-wounds place at varying depths in the dermis and below trigger tightening and collagen production. Patients have reported that afterwards it feels like the muscles have been doing ab crunches. While there may be some visible tightening this is a long term process where the skin appearance continues to improve over 3 – 6 months. Recent studies have shown that new collagen is still being deposited 2 years following a single treatment. That indicates this is a very long lasting therapy. The ideal patient would be similar to that for Thermage.  Nothing will remove very lax or excess skin outside of surgery.  But if you start younger, before the problem becomes severe, then yes, there are non-surgical ways to lift the face.
Because of post treatment tenderness of the muscles and along bony ridges, patients should wait 4-6 weeks before resuming facial treatments and permanent cosmetic procedures that involve pressure or stretching. A light touch treatment can probably be tolerated well at 2 weeks. If in doubt have the client get an ok from their medical professional.

 

Can Medications Really Affect My Esthetic or Permanent Cosmetic Service?

This is a common question clients often ask and the one word answer is Yes, medications can affect even the most simple skin care services.  Many medications have effects on the body aside from the reason they are being taken.  This is easily demonstrated – just listen to one of the many television commercials for prescription medications.  The list of possible side effects is rather staggering.  Of course not every person has these side effects but they can happen. Be sure to let your esthetician or permanent makeup artist know about all prescription and non-prescription drugs, supplements, topically applied products, eye drops, etcetera.  The more they know about what you use, the better an outcome they can help you achieve.  Do NOT stop taking your medications. Depending on the problem there are often workarounds. If your medication is a contraindication to doing the desired service your technician will probably recommend you talk to your doctor. Or they may request you confirm with your physician that having this procedure is safe for you. Your health and safety is our number one concern.

Cholesterol and blood pressure medications while not blood thinners, work to make the blood platelets not stick together. In permanent cosmetics this often means there may be more chance of a blood droplet coming to the surface. The down side is this molecule is bigger than the tattoo pigment molecule and can wash some of them away.  This leads to more color loss than would experienced on a client not on these medications.

Clients on thyroid medications often need permanent cosmetic procedures re-enhanced a little more frequently.  We have noticed that for whatever reason their color fades a little more quickly.

Blood thinning medications can also cause issues with permanent cosmetic procedures. You may be referred to get clearance from your physician.

Diabetic clients who are insulin dependent often do not heal as well and may be at a heightened risk for infection. They may need clearance from their physician for permanent cosmetic services, waxing or other more aggressive skin care treatments.

Use of retinoids (Vitamin A) or acids like Glycolic, Lactic or blends work to thin the dead skin of the epidermis. This means that a service like waxing, microdermabrasion or other exfoliating therapy increases the risk of skin irritation or even creating a wound.  Be sure to discuss use of any of these products, prescription or over the counter with your technician.

Restasis is a new concern as it has been observed that those who use it have increased sensitivity of the eyelid to the point that a permanent cosmetic eyeliner procedure is not well tolerated. Your technician may want you to discontinue use for 30 days before doing the tattoo procedure.  Do not restart use of the restasis for at least two weeks after your technician has determined it is completed. (Wait until all follow up work is finalized.)

Patients on chemotherapy drugs have a compromised immune system and may not heal well.  All of these drugs need your doctor’s written permission that this procedure is safe for you.

Botox and injectables are extremely popular today.  Any skin care or permanent cosmetic procedure is fine before having botox or injectables.  If you have had either a neurotoxin or filler injectable wait at least 2 weeks before having a facial massage, other skin care treatment, waxing, or permanent cosmetic.  The manipulation of the skin has a small potential for affecting the outcome and lasting of your injection site.  For a lip coloration procedure the best timing is before any fillers are injected. This has been clinically observed to produce the best most predictable outcome.

Herbs and supplements can also have an impact on the skin.  Some can cause blood thinning or skin thinning.  Be sure to provide your technician with a complete list of everything that you take so that we can avoid unexpected complications and make sure you have the safest procedure with the most positive outcome.

Women’s Health Issues Can Be Sneakier…..

Women need to understand how their bodies work differently than men’s to best protect themselves and respond to undiagnosed health issues promptly and appropriately.  The first and foremost signal is “change”  if you notice a change in your body or how it operates, this can be a clue that something needs to be checked.

As women we are trained from youth to take care of those around us.  Unfortunately, this can mean we disregard our own health signals and this can lead to serious consequences.  In the past most of the symptoms for serious health risks we those for men.  It wasn’t noted how women’s bodies were different and that their symptoms were often more obscure.  Now that this information is coming to light, it is important to educate ourselves, and if you are a service professional, be able to respond appropriately if your client has concerns or you note changes in their health.  While we cannot self diagnose, or diagnose medical issues in others, we can learn when to get something checked.One of the tricky parts is that different medical challenges can often have similar symptoms.  This is reinforcement that if we see the symptoms, we need to get them checked.  In this blog we are going to cover 4 important conditions that can lead to serious medical issues if not checked and treated: dehydration, anemia, heart attack and sleep apnea.Dehydration happens when the water levels in the body drop to unsafe levels. When we become dehydrated more water is moving out of our cells and the body than we are taking in.  With the water loss comes salt loss.  Salt loss can cause the body to become out of balance and severe dehydration can even lead to death.  Existing medical health conditions, diseases that cause diarrhea and/or vomiting, no access to water or a severe injury can all lead to dehydration.  Symptoms include:
Increased thirst
Dry mouth and swollen tongue
Weakness
Dizziness
Palpitations (feeling that the heart is jumping or pounding)
Confusion
Sluggishness fainting
Fainting
Inability to sweat
Decreased urine output
If you note any of these symptoms is is important to seek medical advice.  In the mean time get the person seated and comfortable, try to cool the person down and get moisture in them via water, popsicles, ice chips, sports drinks. If this doesn’t help, get medical assistance.

Anemia is caused by a lack of adequate red blood cells. It is sometimes challenging to address as there are over 400 different types. Medical assistance is important. We know anemia is common in women in child bearing years, but there are women who are genetically predisposed to this condition and fight it their entire life.  Anemia can also be caused by internal bleeding.  This might be triggered by medications being taken for another condition, such as aspirin or ibuprofen for headaches or other aches and pains.  Or it could be caused by other medical conditions.  Anemia can have sneaky symptoms that are often confused with other disorders.  The most common symptoms of anemia include:
Easy fatigue and loss of energy
Unusually rapid heart beat, particularly with exercise
Shortness of breath and headache, particularly with exercise
Difficulty concentrating
Dizziness
Pale skin
Leg cramps
Insomnia
Since there are lots of potential causes that need unique treatments, if someone is experiencing potential anemia symptoms it is important that they see a physician. It is not something that can be addressed by self medication and could make the problem worse.

Heart attacks in women can be very different from those in men.  Part of this may stem from the way a woman’s body handles cholesterol build up different from her male counterpart.  When men develop a plaque buildup it occurs in the major arteries.  They tend to carry their excess fat in the belly. We women on the other hand are hiders and smoothers.  We send the excess cholesterol to the tiniest little arterioles where the blood oxygen interchange is supposed to take place.  We smooth it away across all of our body.  We are excellent at hiding the problem.  So when the body does go into a heart attack while the symptoms can be similar as a mans, more frequently they are not. This is because the problem causers are not in the same place. In a CPR First Aid class I recently took, one of the attendees, a woman told of having a heart attack 8 years ago.  She never had any chest pain.  She had indigestion.  Then she had it again.  She did notice some tiredness and a bit of tightness but mostly indigestion.  Her husband finally took her to an emergency room to get checked up.  The technician on duty noticed her pallor and too intervention steps.  She was having a heart attack.
Web MD says there are 6 symptoms for heart attack in women and if you have one or more signs you should call 911 and seek immediate medical care.  Those symptoms include:

  1. Chest pain or discomfort. Chest pain is the most common heart attack symptom, but some women may experience it differently than men. It may feel like a squeezing or fullness, and the pain can be anywhere in the chest, not just on the left side. It’s usually “truly uncomfortable” during a heart attack, says cardiologist Rita Redberg, MD, director of Women’s Cardiovascular Services at the University of California, San Francisco. “It feels like a vise being tightened.”
  2. Pain in your arm(s), back, neck, or jaw. This type of pain is more common in women than in men. It may confuse women who expect their pain to be focused on their chest and left arm, not their back or jaw. The pain can be gradual or sudden, and it may wax and wane before becoming intense. If you’re asleep, it may wake you up. You should report any “not typical or unexplained” symptoms in any part of your body above your waist to your doctor or other health care provider, says cardiologist C. Noel Bairey Merz, MD, director of the Barbra Streisand Women’s Heart Center at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.
  3. Stomach pain. Sometimes people mistake stomach pain that signals a heart attack with heartburn, the flu, or a stomach ulcer. Other times, women experience severe abdominal pressure that feels like an elephant sitting on your stomach, says cardiologist Nieca Goldberg, MD, medical director of the Joan H. Tisch Center for Women’s Health at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York.
  4. Shortness of breath, nausea, or lightheadedness. If you’re having trouble breathing for no apparent reason, you could be having a heart attack, especially if you’re also having one or more other symptoms. “It can feel like you have run a marathon, but you didn’t make a move,” Goldberg says.
  5. Sweating. Breaking out in a nervous, cold sweat is common among women who are having a heart attack. It will feel more like stress-related sweating than perspiration from exercising or spending time outside in the heat. “Get it checked out” if you don’t typically sweat like that and there is no other reason for it, such as heat or hot flashes, Bairey Merz says.
  6. Fatigue. Some women who have heart attacks feel extremely tired, even if they’ve been sitting still for a while or haven’t moved much. “Patients often complain of a tiredness in the chest,” Goldberg says. “They say that they can’t do simple activities, like walk to the bathroom.”
  7. So if you experience any of these, or more than one, seek help to save a life.
Sleep Apnea is a really sneaky disorder and can be even sneakier in women.  Typically tied into loud snoring this symptom is very typical in men. With the slightly different structural differences in women this symptom can present, come and go, or be completely absent.  A big part of the symptoms will be dependent on the cause.  In most people one side of the nose and sinuses is slightly larger. If the person sleeps with this larger side up there are less breathing issues. But if they sleep on their back or other side, symptoms may be more pronounced.  If the problem is being caused by a physical structural blockage these symptoms may be absent.
This problem is one I had a rather personal encounter with.  In the past I used to have a problem with sometimes loud breathing that was generally not prolonged but rather interrupted with perhaps gasps. But as a physical blockage in my throat became enlarged the symptoms changed and I quit snoring almost complete.  Problem cured 🙂  Not exactly.  It just morphed.  Instead of snoring I had morphed into the more insidious symptom. I quit breathing.  Thank goodness a friend alerted me.  They had sleep apnea and recognized it for what it was.
 At first I wanted to blow it off, but when I researched it online and saw the health ramifications: high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, weight gain, asthma, acid reflux, and car accidents.
 I made the call and saw a specialist in sleep disorders.  I found out that I was stopping breathing for 30-60 seconds many times an hours.  My blood oxygen levels were dropped from the normal 99-100% (normal is above 90%) to 60%.  In the educational discussion I realized that my falling asleep sitting on the sofa at night was probably sleep deprivation from not sleeping anywhere near normally.  I underwent a sleep study, spending the night at the sleep center wired into a computer via probes all over my head and upper body.   They actually interrupted the study after only about 2 hours and pronounced the problem and hooked me up to a fine trickle of oxygen. When they woke me in the morning it was the first time in a very long time I had gotten up without a headache – another symptom of the oxygen deprivation.  They put me on a fast track and in a week I had a device to help assure good airflow and elimination of the problem.  I fully admit it takes a bit of getting used to but the health benefits are well worth it. By the follow up visit the doctor tested my blood oxygen and it was 99%. He even assured me if I missed a night or didn’t have a full night sleep with the device it was just fine.  I was very concerned how this would impact my personal life but found it has not been an issue.  It has however left me with elevated blood pressure which is now being treated and monitored.
When I visited a new PCP in January I was rather surprised to see the signs in the patient room about the symptoms of sleep apnea. Clearly, this disorder is finally being more aggressively treated by medical professionals as controlling it will control many other medical disorders.

Chemotherapy and your skin

Having to undergo chemotherapy is a challenge in itself but some of the drugs that are necessary to treat the cancer can bring their own set of challenges to the skin. According to Dermatology Times, November 5, 2014 review of a research report from the European Medical Journal Dermatology the new generation of anticancer drugs are more apt to cause skin reactions than their predecessors. In addition to hair loss and drying out of  mucous tissue, skin side effects can range from mild widespread dryness to severe debilitating issues.

Here are 5 key points:

*  Wide spread skin dryness and papulopustular rash (acne like) are known skin side effects of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) inhibitors.  These inhibitors include cetuximab, erlotinib, gefitinib, lapatinib, panitumumab.  EGFR eruptions do not have comedones, instead they present at a rash and their severity is related to improved tumor response and survival.

 

*A side effect called hand foot syndrome because it most commonly occurs on the palms of the hand and soles of the feet occurs in 30-60% of patients.  If you develop these symptoms be sure to advise your doctors so it can be managed.

In mild to moderate hand-foot syndrome, the following symptoms may occur on the palms of the hands and/or the soles of the feet:

Redness (similar to a sunburn)
Swelling
A sensation of tingling or burning
Tenderness (sensitive to touch)
Tightness of the skin
Thick calluses and blisters on the palms and soles
Symptoms of severe hand-foot syndrome include:

Cracked, flaking, or peeling skin
Blisters, ulcers, or sores on the skin
Severe pain
Difficulty walking or using the hands

*Paronychia, an infection that occurs around the nails, affects 10-30% of those receiving EGRF inhibitor therapy.

*Cranial radiation therapy and neuroleptic drugs, (antipsychotic drugs that are now being used to treat other disorders), can trigger a variety of skin rashes.

*Studies have shown that hydration, antimicrobials, sterile tissue, protective ointment, and specific dermatological therapies can reduce the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation therapy.   It is important to be aware of and manage skin dryness and see dermatologist if there are signs of peeling, blistering, bleeding or pain. Your dermatologist or  esthetician may be able to provide you with skin care products with ingredients that have been shown to be helpful in research studies.  These ingredients include: calendula, corticosteroids, topical sodium hyaluronate, urea and allantoin. Plain, non-scented, lanolin-free hydrophilic (water based hydrating) creams may help prevent radiation skin reactions.

Esthetician’s specialty is healthful, youthful skin

Feb 6, 2014

Esthetician’s specialty is healthful, youthful skin

Let’s face it, nobody can live up to the glamour look of Hollywood Barbies. “Not even Hollywood Barbies can,” asserts Judith “Judi” Culp, owner of Esthetics NW Services in Eugene.

But for women and men who want to improve their appearance with younger-looking and healthier skin, the anti-aging specialist has a 34-year career and all sorts of treatments and products at her disposal.

Facials lead to “skin that looks brighter, clearer, plumper and more toned,” Culp says.

For women with problematic skin, the facial includes deep cleansing, toning, disinfecting and hydrating. Facialsto counteract aging combine treatments to exfoliate, hydrate, nourish and firm the skin.

Culp helps women select the best makeup for their skin type, and her beauty treatments range from permanent cosmetics, such as eyebrow enhancements, to concealing age spots and other blemishes.

Patients who commit to ongoing skin-care treatments, notably microdermabrasion and other technologies, see the most lasting results.

“Skin care is much like exercise,” says Culp, who literally has written the book on training estheticians in the science of skin care. “If I go to the gymonce, it’s going to wear off in a few days. If I want to make permanent changes in my body, I’ve got to have a regimen and be diligent about it.

“The same thing is with skin care. If they go once, it will give them a nice cleansing,” or whatever else falls into their budget, she continues. “But if they really want to see changes, it’s going to take a bit of a commitment and a series of treatments.”

Sunny atmosphere

Culp chose warm wall colors and Mediterranean art, including a wall mural in the lounge of her clinic at 81 Centennial Loop in Eugene, for relaxedatmosphere.

“I wanted to bring a Tuscan influence in here, because Tuscan colors are warm and sunny and friendly. So we have an escape from the daily gray,” she says.

Both treatment rooms operate at the sanitary standards of dental offices. A third room is reserved for makeup consultations.

“I have them bring me their face in a bag,” teases Culp in reference to her makeup consultations. She analyzes exactly what makeup her customers use, sometimes in conjunction with a facial treatment. “I’m here to show you how to take best advantage of your

Judi Culp, owner of Esthetics NW Services in Eugene, works with customer Karen Williams. Culp provides a range of skin-care and cosmetic services focused on maintaining healthy, vibrant skin.

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Esthetics NW

Permanent Cosmetics NW
81 Centennial Loop, Suite 3
Eugene, OR 97401

A division of Culp Enterprises, Inc.
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