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Peeling Your Way to Perfection

Friday, August 9th, 2013

Chances are if you are exposed to any type of media and who isn’t, then you’ve noticed that chemical peels are getting a little more media attention these days.  In today’s world of cosmetic medicine there are many options when it comes to improving the skin’s surface and complexion.

  • CO2 Micro-Fractional Laser Resurfacing
  • Intense Pulse Light
  • Medical Microdermabrasion
  • Chemical Peels

While CO2 Micro-Fractional Laser Resurfacing typically makes more sense when treating acne scarring, heavier forms unwanted pigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles in lighter skinned patients, effective chemical peels are an excellent option for those with active acne and darker skinned patients who are not good laser candidates.  Chemical peels can offer a nice value for the savings conscious consumer.  They are multi-function tools that provide solutions for acne, sun damage, fine lines, poor texture and dyschromia.

At Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Dr. G. D. Castillo offers several  Chemical Peel options. For most skin issues the Vitalize Peel is my preferred peel of choice followed by its more aggressive counter-part, the Rejuvenize Peel.  I favor the Vitalize Peel because our patient’s do not have to suffer through a harsh recovery of irritated, weeping or scabbing skin as with many of the peel formulas that are being utilized. This peel is self-regulating which means it does not require a neutralizing agent to stop the peeling action, creating a safe, consistent result.

You will notice smoother, clearer skin and a softening of lines and wrinkles and will have little downtime.   The Vitalize Peel is a quick 20 minute treatment and is often referred to as a “lunchtime” peel. You can cover with mineral make-up immediately and return to work.  Because Retinoic Acid is used in conjunction with this peel, you will begin to peel within about 48 hours and will need to discontinue cosmetics until the peeling has deceased.  You will see improvements after your first peel and those improvements will continue to increase throughout the treatment series until a new radiant, clear skin is revealed.

While the Vitalize Peel is an excellent choice for those with acne, those who do not wish to undergo laser procedures, and those with darker skin types, not all patients are candidates for chemical peels. Those with active warts, Herpes Simplex or cold sores in the treatment area should not have this chemical peel as it could cause spreading of those conditions.  Patients with allergies to any of the ingredients such as salicylates (aspirin), those who have used Accutane, had chemotherapy or radiation within the last year as not candidates for the Vitalize Peel.

Schedule a consultation if you would like more information about the chemical peel options available at Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Center.

Yours Truly,

Roxanne Hammond, RMA
Skincare and Laser Specialist
G. D. Castillo, M.D.
COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY

Prevention Through Education

Tuesday, July 16th, 2013

Now that summer sun is in full swing and the kids are out of school it’s time to make sure we as parents and caregivers are doing everything we can to protect them from the sun’s damaging rays while allowing them to still enjoy the great outdoors. 

I know that my kid’s summers were always jam-packed with activities from swim club to day camps and softball games.  We could hardly catch a breath.  Daycare providers, coaches and camp counselors do their best to ensure the safety of our children and that includes applying sunscreen. But with all the commotion that goes on with a group of rambunctious kids, it’s easy to see how remembering to re-apply at the proper time could get over-looked.

 

That is why I like the recommendation from the Skin Cancer Foundation http://www.skincancer.org/Search?q=sun+protective+clothing which says you should use sun protective clothing as the first line of defense. This is a good suggestion as sunscreens break down every two hours and must to be re-applied. Even the best sunscreens like the ones we carry here at Cosmetic Plastic Surgery will eventually break down, even more quickly if your child is sweating, spending time in a pool or other water source this summer. Now this doesn’t mean it is safe to skip the use of sunscreens. You definitely need both forms of protection. Purchase UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) clothing with a UPF + 50 rating. Garments with a UPF + 50 rating will block about 98% of both UVA & UVB rays. http://www.coolibar.com

Sunglasses and hats will give additional protection as well.  When shopping for sunglasses, there are two important factors.  First, choose a pair that not only wraps tightly around the face so that harmful UV rays do not burn your child’s eyes and peri-ocular skin. Second, sunglasses with a protective UV rating of 400 will block approximately 99% of the sun’s ever harmful rays.  Remember baseball caps only provide coverage for one side of the head / neck. This leaves your child’s ears, neck, chest, shoulders and the sides of his or her face exposed.  To provide good protection look for a wide-brim hat with a brim that is 3inches or more.

Trying to choose the sunscreen that will best protect your child is where it gets a little tricky. It can feel like you need a Ph.D. in “sunscreenology.” There are so many choices that most parents just simply look for the one with the highest SPF on the label.  Unfortunately that can be misleading.  We like to share with our patients that the most important qualifier is choosing a good sunscreen is to look for two ”physical sunscreen” ingredients; titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. Once you have the right sunscreen, apply it liberally! And then re-apply it – liberally!

Don’t be afraid to talk with your coaches, camp staff and daycare providers about your sun exposure concerns, and ways they can help protect your child. It is important to recognize that sun damage is cumulative.  What does that mean for an unprotected child?  Well the amount of UV radiation they a child is exposed to from the day they are born until present impacts his or her risk of developing a skin cancer and pre-mature aging.  Both of which are preventable with education and the proper development of sun protection habits.

 

 

Yours Truly,

 

Roxanne Hammond, RMA
Skincare and Laser Specialist
G. D. Castillo, M.D.
COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY  https://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/DrCastilloCosmeticPlasticSurgery
800-252-7123 (within IL)
217-359-7508 Savoy (Champaign-Urbana)
309-662-0436 Bloomington

 

Could Zinc be a Botox® Booster?

Thursday, January 24th, 2013

 

The effects of Botox®  and other botulinum toxin injections such as Dysport, and Myobloc are estimated to last about 3 – 4 months for the average patient.  However, in some cases it is observed that the effects can last for a longer or shorter period of time.  It has been observed that the results can even differ from treatment to treatment in the same patient without any real explanation as to why.  Dr. Charles Soparkar, an Oculoplastic surgeon from Texas noticed this in his practice and began to investigate.  He realized there may be a link between Botox® and Zinc.

Dr. Soparkar’s study was recently released indicating the mineral Zinc as a “Botox® Booster.” The study by Dr. Charles Soparkar and his team indicates that when patients in the study took Zinc Citrate 50 mg in combination with the enzyme phytase 3000U for four days prior to the injection, they saw not only an increase in the effectiveness of neurotoxins (Botox® Cosmetic, Dysport, Myobloc) but also in the longevity.

Neurotoxins such as Botox® Cosmetic, Dysport and Myobloc are used to temporarily smooth facial lines and to decrease spastic muscle movement.  Botulinum toxin is thought to require a certain baseline zinc level in the body because each molecule of the botulinum toxin must bind to a molecule of zinc to be effective. Phytase is an enzyme which increases the body’s ability to absorb zinc and is therefore thought to increase the effectiveness and duration of Botox® and the like. In this study, 92% of the patients who took both zinc citrate and phytase had on average a 30% increase in the duration of the Botox® injection and 84% of patients reported an improved effect when compared to Botox® with Zinc only or a placebo only. One thing to consider in this study is that it appears that over half of the patients were over the age of seventy. Could that explain the increased effectiveness of Botox® in this study since Zinc levels are often lower in patients of this age group?

This study was carried out by researchers from Baylor College of Medicine, MD Anderson Cancer Center, the Methodist Hospital and Weill Cornell University.   The patients in this study were being treated for blepharospasms, hemifacial spasms and facial wrinkles.

While this study may offer answers to why Botox® lasts longer in some patients, keep in mind that the author of this study has a patent pending for the use of zinc and phytase for enhancing the efficacy of botulinum toxins injections, which presents a conflict of interest for the author of the study. His pending patent is for a prescription supplement called Zytate, manufactured by OCUSOCT Inc.  Each prescription costs about $80.00 for a five day regimen.

If you find the effectiveness of your Botox® treatments to vary it could be worth testing your zinc levels. I hope the author of this study is on to something as I am sure both Dr. Castillo and our patients would be very excited if we would offer a option for more effective, longer lasting Botox®.  However, I would like to see the results of other large clinical trials on this topic done by other researchers before drawing a final conclusion.

 

Yours Truly,

Can we now offer a "Botox® Booster" to our patients for a longer lasting, more effective result?

Anti-Aging With Grace…

 

Roxanne Hammond, RMA
Skincare and Laser Specialist
G. D. Castillo, M.D.
COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY  https://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/DrCastilloCosmeticPlasticSurgery
800-252-7123 (within IL)
217-359-7508 Savoy (Champaign-Urbana)
309-662-0436 Bloomington

 

 

 

ILLICIT BOTOX™ SURFACES IN THE UNITED STATES

Wednesday, December 26th, 2012

The FDA, through its regulators, reportedly warned 350 medical practices that they may have purchased unapproved (presumed counterfeit) versions of the drug Botox™ from a network of wholesalers controlled by Canada Drugs, an international supplier that has been previously linked to fake cancer medicines.  This was reported in the Wall Street Journal on December 24, 2012.  Although little known to people (patients), physicians can go across the border and buy drugs from Canada.  When a practice does that, they take the risk of buying medications that are not approved by the FDA, and that have a significant potential for being counterfeit.  When one talks about expensive medications like Botox™ in which one vial sells in the United States for close to $700.00, the temptation and potential for abuse is huge.  Not only can these medications be fake and have absolutely no effect, they can also be harmful from the standpoint of the content, and also sterility.

 

As a consumer, it would be advisable that you would find out from your medical provider if the Botox™ that you are receiving comes from an approved source; that is, a legal representative from the company Allergan, which markets and has registered Botox™.  While physicians and patients can save big money by going outside of the United States and buying drugs in Canada or elsewhere, the potential for counterfeit, useless or harmful medication is high.  At Cosmetic Plastic Surgery with offices both in Champaign-Urbana (Savoy) and also in Bloomington-Normal, we stock and provide our patients with only 100% Botox™ that has been obtained through legal distributors in the United States from the company Allergan, where safety has been monitored through multiple steps, not only by the company, but by FDA representatives through their mandated and approved procedures.

Yours Truly,

G. D. Castillo, M.D., FACS
COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY https://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/DrCastilloCosmeticPlasticSurgery
800-252-7123 (within IL)
217-359-7508 Savoy (Champaign-Urbana)
309-662-0436 Bloomington

The Pregnancy Mask

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012

ASK OUR EXPERTS:

Q:  I developed Melasma on my upper lip while I was pregnant.  It’s been months and it is still there.  What can I do?

Over-production of melanin is also stimulated by UV radiation which makes it a complex issue that is difficult to treat, because your body has already kicked melanin production into over-drive and that is compounded further by recurring stimulation from UV rays. Sometimes Melasma will go away after pregnancy or lighten enough to cover the discoloration with cosmetics but unfortunately it often returns with additional pregnancies, hormonal changes and sun exposure.  The good news is there are treatment options that offer hope.

It is important for you to understand that sun is your ENEMY and it will remain your greatest nemeses. Melasma is a chronic condition.  There is no magic cream that will guarantee to banish it forever. I find that Melasma is one of the most difficult skin issues that we treat at Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Skin Rejuvenation and Laser Institute.  It is frustrating for both myself and my patients.  Therefore, I want to express the importance having realistic expectation before you decide if or which treatment option is right for you.

There are a few things you can try to improve your Melasma.  The first and most important one is simply applying medical-grade physical sunscreen with either micronized Zinc Oxide or Titanium Dioxide every day, 365 days a year, without fail. You can get this from a dermatologist or plastic surgeon like Dr. Castillo. Avoid trying to sneak by with just the SPF of 15 that is in your make-up or moisturizer, it won’t cut it.  Because even the best sunscreen cannot block all UV radiation, other protection should also be used such as a wide-brimmed hat or umbrella. There is no such thing as “water-proof” sunscreen, only “water-resistant” sunscreen so if you are sweating or swimming you will need to re-apply every 80 minutes.

Prescription Bleaching creams, which I prefer to call “lightening” creams can also be helpful. They are used initially on only a short term basis but can be repeated in the future as a form of maintenance. You must be very faithful to your sunscreen regimen with using lightening agents.

If changing your oral contraception or hormonal therapy is not an option, and you haven’t gotten the type of improvement you desire then it may be time to consider more aggressive treatment options.  At Cosmetic Plastic Surgery we find the most success using CO2 Micro-Fractional Laser Resurfacing in combination with a lightening agent, medical grade sunscreen and sun avoidance. Other treatment options may include series of medical grade peels or IPL treatments.  Again, sun is your ENEMY.  It can very rapidly undo any successful treatment with sun exposure.

 

Yours Truly,

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roxanne Hammond, RMA
Skincare and Laser Specialist
G. D. Castillo, M.D. FACS
COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK
800-252-7123 (within IL)
217-359-7508 Savoy (Champaign-Urbana)
309-662-0436 Bloomington

 

Ask Our Expert: What is the best type of sunscreen?

Wednesday, August 22nd, 2012

 

Q: What is the best type of sunscreen?

A: Historically, it has been shown that physical sunscreens provide the best protection against both UVA & UVB radiation and are less likely to cause skin irritation.  Dr. Castillo, cosmetic surgery and anti-aging expert  https://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com/ recommends medical-grade, physical sunscreens to all his patients.

There are two divisions of sunscreen ingredients; physical and chemical. Physical sunscreens reflect the UV radiation while chemical sunscreens absorb the UV radiation and break it down within the skin. Some sunscreens contain both a physical and a chemical component.

There are two types of physical sunscreens available; zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. Both provide broad spectrum UVA and UVB protection. Today, these ingredients can be found in finely micronized, nano-sphere  form which allows for ease of daily use. Not only does zinc oxide and titanium dioxide provide needed broad-spectrum coverage but they are also beneficial to those who have sensitive skin or are irritated by chemical ingredients.

You will typically find multiple active ingredients listed in chemical sunscreen.  Each chemical ingredient protects only against a specific portion of the UV spectrum. Be aware that at this time many over-the-counter sunscreens protect against UVB rays only, although there are a few chemical ingredients like Oxybenzone that do offer UVA/UVB protection. Therefore, when purchasing over the counter sunscreen, it is important to examine the label for the claim “broad-spectrum.”  Also look for a sunscreen that says “very water resistant.”  However, keep in mind that even the best water resistant sunscreens can only protect you for 80 minutes.  Then you will need to re-apply.

With inconsistent OTC product labels and the idea that active ingredients in sunscreens differ from manufacturer to manufacturer it can be difficult to decipher all of them so I have provided at chart of the more common ingredients found in sunscreens.  When in doubt whether a sunscreen will effectively protect you and your family, I recommend selecting a medical grade sunscreen from your local cosmetic surgeon, plastic surgeon or dermatologist. Our patient’s favorite sunscreens are:

Sun Defense by Castillo MD Skin Science, which offers medical grade 12% Zinc Oxide, 7.5% Octinoxate broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection

Prime Defense by Castillo MD Skin Science, which offers 10% Titanium Dioxide, 4% Zinc Oxide broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection with an added skin primer.

 

Chemical & physical ingredients found in sunscreens.

Ingredient:                                            Ray Type:

Avobenzone UVA
Dioxybenzone UVA/ UVB
Homosalate UVB
Octocrylene UVB
Octyl methoxycinnamate UVB
Octisalate UVB
Oxybenzone UVA/ UVB
Padimate O UVB
Mexoryl UVA/UVB
Titanium dioxide UVA/UVB     broad spectrum
Trolamine salicylate UVB
Zinc oxide UVA/UVB     broad spectrum

WARNING: You must actually apply the sunscreen to your skin.  Just purchasing it will not provide sufficient protection! lol

 

Roxanne, Skincare & Laser Specialist

Roxanne Hammond, RMA
Skincare and Laser Specialist
G. D. Castillo, M.D.
COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY                                                                 https://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/DrCastilloCosmeticPlasticSurgery
800-252-7123 (within IL)
217-359-7508 Savoy (Champaign-Urbana)
309-662-0436 Bloomington

Say Goodbye to Chest Lines, Wrinkles and Brown Spots!

Wednesday, August 8th, 2012

 

Roxanne performs CO2 Micro-Fractional Laser Resurfacing to remove lines and brown spots of the chest.

I was speaking with one of Dr. Castillo’s breast augmentation patients during a skin rejuvenation consultation.  She explained to me that a few years back she had breast enhancement https://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com/cosmetic-surgery/breast-enlargement.cfm in Dr. Castillo’s Cosmetic Surgery facility in Savoy, Illinois and that she couldn’t be happier with her results and the entire Cosmetic Plastic Surgery experience.

However, she has some fine lines and wrinkles on her chest between her breasts along with a moderate amount of brown spots. She expressed that she would like to show off her new cleavage https://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com/photo-gallery/results.cfm?Category=10 without being embarrassed about having wrinkles between her new, perky breasts.  She asked if G.D. Castillo M.D. and Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Skin Restoration and Laser Institute offered skin treatments to remove the wrinkles and brown spots of the chest.

I explained to her that the vertical lines and brown spots she was describing are common among those who have been over-exposed to the sun. The sun breaks down elastin and collagen of the chest, creating lines, wrinkles, and sagging skin.  It also causes melanocytes (pigmented cells that create brown spots she is seeing on her chest) to over-populate the surface of the skin in attempt to protect itself from damaging UV radiation.

I explained to her that yes, we can help with her chest lines and brown spots.  To improve the look of her damaged skin, first, she would need to begin to protect her décolletage using medical grade broad-spectrum sunscreen 365 days per year.  UV radiation will create more severe damage to areas such as the chest, neck and hands. The characteristics of the skin of the chest, neck and hands simply cannot tolerate the same amount of UV radiation as the face. The skin of the chest is not as forgiving as skin surfaces such as the face when it is repeatedly over-exposed to the sun. The skin of the chest is thinner, containing less elastin / collagen.  As the elastin is broken down, lines, wrinkles and sagging of the skin WILL occur.

Unlike the face, skin of décolletage does not contain an abundance of oil glands.  Why is this a problem?  Having an abundance of oil glands is important because as oil glands cells divide, they can become almost any other type of epidermal cell.  Therefore, when cells get damaged, they provide new cells to help to restore your damaged skin.

The good news is there are a few ways to correct or at least improve the skin of your chest.

  1.  First, and most importantly, PROTECT your chest for the sun.  Use a medical-grade, broad-spectrum, physical sunscreen  every day of the year. I recommend one of two  physical sunscreens:  Sun Defense or Prime Defense By Castillo MD Skin Science.  Both have high percentages of physical block ingredients (Titanium Dioxide and / or Zinc Oxide) making them superior  choices for sun protection.
  2. Avoid tanning beds as UVA rays will only create more damage to your skin.
  3. Use UV protective clothing and a wide brimmed hat to provide additional protection.
  4. Consult G.D. Castillo M.D. or another Cosmetic Plastic Surgeon regarding the following treatment options:
    1. CO2 Micro-Fractional Laser Resurfacing – This will decrease the lines of your chest (décolletage) while building collagen within the treated skin.  It will also make a significant improvement to the texture of your skin and decrease or remove your brown spots or discoloration. More than one treatment may be necessary due to the delicate state of the chest skin.  Did you notice that I highlighted, underlined and italicized the “CO2” in CO2 Micro-Fractional Laser Resurfacing?  That is because CO2 is the key there!! CO2 Micro-Fractional Laser Resurfacing far surpasses other non-CO2 laser technology using a “similar” name such as “fractional” or “Fraxel”… https://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com/cosmetic-surgery/laser-skin-rejuvenation.cfm
    2. Medical Microdermabrasion – Multiple microdermabrasion treatments https://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com/cosmetic-surgery/skin-resurfacing.cfm will soften the appearance of your chest lines and lighten the brown spots over time.  Be aware that this treatment will not build collagen, provide tightening or remove the lines and wrinkles on your chest.  It is meant only to brighten the skin by removing the build-up of dead skin cells.
    3. Medical Grade skincare products – There are effective medical grades skincare products created to specifically treat the chest area.  These products will not solve your problem alone but work well to support and prolong the effects of the above mentioned treatments. Medical grade means that they are of a higher strength and must be over seen by a physician therefor these are not your average over-the-counter disappointments.

Zap ya later,

DSC_0475G. D. Castillo, M.D.
COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY  https://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.comLIKE US OR RECOMMEND US ON FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/DrCastilloCosmeticPlasticSurgery
800-252-7123 (within IL)
217-359-7508 Savoy (Champaign-Urbana)
309-662-0436 Bloomington

Ask Our Expert: Retin-A

Friday, July 20th, 2012

RetinA postQ:   My dermatologists gave me a prescription for Retin-A, but after a few days my skin became very red and irritated.   My Doctor explained that several weeks of skin irritation is often just par for the course when using Retin-A.  He asked me to try applying it every other night instead of every night, to be patient and that eventually the irritation would resolve itself.  I stopped using the Retin-A because the irritation was worse than my aging skin.   Is there anything else I can do?

A:  I am happy to report – YES!  Both our Bloomington area and Champaign area Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Clinic patients have found success with a few simple adjustments to the way they apply their Retin-A, Renova, Tretinion, etc.

1.  After you cleanse your face, pat it dry and wait at least 15 minutes (to assure your skin is completely dry) before applying your Retin-A.

2. Apply a pea size amount.  This is typically all you need for the entire face. Remember that more is not better in this case. 

3. Avoid combining other exfoliating or skin regenerating products like glycolic acids, with Retin-A, at least until your skin is able to easily tolerate the Retin-A.

4. Always apply a moisturizer on top of your Retin-A.  This is a very important step in the success of your regimen so resist skipping it. (If you find that you are still experiencing dry, irritated skin after trying all of the suggestions here,  you can try mixing your moisturizer and Retin-A together as this will reduce its potency. )

5. Begin applying your Retin-A every third night.  As your skin tolerates the Retin-A, increase use to every other night, then every night.

6. Remember that Retin-A and like products will cause increased sensitivity to the sun.  Therefore Retin-A should only be applied at night only, never during the day.  Wear a medical grade broad-spectrum suncreen every day, re-apply the sunscreen when needed and avoid excessive sun exposure.

If despite all of the above suggestions, you find that you are still unable to tolerate Retin-A, you may want to consider medical microdermabrasion.  It is a pain-free, even relaxing way to keep your skin well exfoliated and looking fresh.  For more information on medical microdermabrasion.

Roxanne, Skincare & Laser Specialist

 

 

 

 

COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY
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https://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com
800-252-7123 (within IL)
217-359-7508 Savoy (Champaign-Urbana)
309-662-0436 Bloomington