Botox to stop smoking

Allen Gabriel from Vancouver offers an interesting treatment for patients wanting to smoke:  . He injects Botox into the lip. This paralyses the orbicularis oris muscle which purses the lips. Apart from other, probably undesired effects it makes is physically difficult to smoke. It seems to work. However the arises if smoking is a physical or mental problem. The physical addiction should have worn off by the time Botox stops to work (usually 3-6 months). If smoking is a mental problem, then this might only be a temporary fix.

Brains over looks?

In a recent article in the Cosmopolitan Anne March (pseudonym) demonstrates the mixed feelings many women have about breast implants: . In fact as a plastic surgeon I often hear comments suggesting that cosmetic procedures are something superficial and shallow. A study in “Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery” (Handel et al 2006 Mar 117(3):757-767) shows a high level of satisfaction of 4.4 out of 5 scores in women who had cosmetic augmentation despite some surgical complications. An online survey in “Aesthetic Surgery Journal” (Young et al 2004 Mar-Apr;24(2):117-35) found increased confidence in 82% of women following breast augmentation.

Many cosmetic procedures done in appropriate patients can lead to high satisfaction and improved self-confidence and are just the opposite from being shallow. The main outcome parameter for a successful procedures in my view is not the cosmetic outcome but the satisfaction. People are different and while some are happy with the way they are, others feel better after surgery.

Is there a such a thing as a healthy sun tan?

The BBC published statistics showing a 10-fold increase in skin cancer from the 70s .  Although this is partially due to holidays in hot countries, most of my patients seem to have lived and worked in hot countries or served in the forces abroad. I think another reason for this increase is earlier detection of skin abnormalities by increased awareness. New skin cancers nowadays appear to be smaller than in the early days of my training.

Cream for tattoo removal

A canadian PhD student is developing a cream for tattoo removal. This cream seems to selectively target macrophages. Macrophages are cells which take up the tattoo pigment and remain in the skin. If it works, tattoo removal could be much cheaper and scarless. My guess is that this method has some limitations, because some of the pigment will remain in the tissue and be taken up by new macrophages later. Interesting concept though:

Cosmetic surgery for men on the increase

According to Cambridge-News there is an increase in men looking for cosmetic surgery. The top procedures are for:


1. Breast Reduction

2. Rhinoplasty (Nose Job)

3. Blepharoplasty (Eyelid Surgery)

4. Otoplasty (Ear Correction)

5. Liposuction


and for


 1. Breast Augmentation

2. Abdominoplasty (tummy tuck)

3. Blepharoplasty (Eyelid Surgery)

4. Breast Reduction

 5. Rhinoplasty (Nose Job)


New website

Thanks to for designing a great website. You have done a great job and been very helpful during the whole process!