Regenerative medicine refers to treatments used to regrow, repair or replace damaged or diseased cells, organs, or tissues. Promoting your own tissues to repair and regenerate can help in many ways, depending on the area and treatment provided. Of the treatments on the market, some are FDA approved while many are not. At Bay Area Esthetics Plastic Surgery, we are up to date on the latest research and regulatory guidelines, and offer our patients treatments that have demonstrated evidence of providing benefit. Below is a list of some of our offerings and reported benefits.
Laser Skin Resurfacing
In the scientific literature, laser ablation by means of vaporization or coagulation of the skin surface has demonstrated efficacy for the treatment of wrinkles (rhytids), including fines lines and texture irregularities, while increasing the amount of sub-epidermal collagen and hyaluronic acid over time for firmer, more youthful-looking skin. Laser treatments have also demonstrated benefit for the treatment of uneven pigmentation / dyschromia, acne scars, surgical or traumatic / burn scars, and various other skin problems.
Fractionated lasers create a pattern of controlled tissue injury, leaving gaps of intact skin. This stimulates skin tightening and collagen formation with less healing / down time compared to fully ablative techniques. Best results are achieved with a series of fractionated CO2 treatments.
Fully ablative CO2 techniques provide skin resurfacing, also known as laser dermabrasion. By removing the entire top layer of skin, the body’s natural healing processes can replace the damaged skin with new skin. Generally, a significant benefit is achieved after one treatment but with more down time compared to fractionated CO2. Although several types of lasers exist, CO2 has long been considered the industry’s ‘Gold Standard’ for skin ablation. Fractionated CO2 is well-tolerated in the office with use of topical numbing creams while fully ablative settings may require sedation. Laser treatments can be combined with microneedling to provide additional collagen and hyaluronic acid formation, skin tightening, and texture improvement.
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Microneedling devices use an array of fine needles to prick the skin. This form of controlled tissue injury, similar to fractionated CO2 treatments, stimulates new collagen and hyaluronic acid formation for improved skin texture (firmer and tightened). Compared to lasers, microneedling can penetrate deeper layers of the skin to stimulate these effects at additional depths. Radiofrequency energy is safely combined with microneedling (RF microneedling) to provide additional tissue coagulation for a more robust healing cascade that may further increase benefit. It can be used to benefit skin texture for a variety of conditions including wrinkles, acne scars, and stretch marks.
RF Microneedling is well-tolerated in the office with use of topical numbing creams. There is minimal down time after RF microneedling, with mild redness typically resolving the same day. We are proud to be one of the few offices in San Francisco that offers the Cutera Secret™ Pro. This platform provides two clinically proven technologies, fractional CO2 laser and RF microneedling to improve appearance and texture throughout all layers of the skin in one session.
Autologous Fat Grafting
Autologous refers to your own tissues. We can remove fat from donor areas of your choosing (i.e. the belly, flanks, or thighs) using small-bore cannulas, and can process it using a variety of methods. We prefer closed-loop fat processing systems when possible, to minimize the risk of contaminating your tissues with the outside air and to increase the chance of survival of the injected fat. Processing your own fat and reinjecting it can be used to add volume to areas of your face and body, to provide lift, and to improve contours where needed. Success of the fat transferred depends on where it is injected (for the fat to “take” or become vascularized). Unlike temporary filling materials like hyaluronic acid, the portion that takes becomes a permanent addition to your body. Autologous fat grafting is safe and well-tolerated in the office for small areas, or in the operating room for larger areas.
Wound Healing Biologics
As reconstructive surgeons as well, we are well-versed in the continually expanding library of products available to help our patients heal. From amniotic membrane, to regenerative templates, to skin substitutes and other biologically active substances on the market, we stay up-to-date on the latest literature to provide our patients with innovative options that demonstrate evidence of benefit. If you are a patient seeking reconstruction for a difficult to heal wound, we are happy to help.
The field of regenerative medicine is always changing and we continually adapt to provide our patients with treatments that we believe to be safe and beneficial. If you have questions about other regenerative techniques out there, we would be happy to discuss them with you and help you understand the options. If you are ready to take the next step and learn more about how regenerative medicine at B.A.E. Plastic Surgery can improve your function and appearance, please contact us online using our confidential form or call / text 415-523-5235 to schedule a consultation.
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