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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_145575289.jpgRecently, when an 8-year-old Ohio girl underwent a plastic surgery procedure to reduce the size of her ears, many people rejoiced that the child, Tatum Gordon, could finally be happy with her appearance. Gordon had long been teased for the size and shape of her ears, and following the surgical procedure she could finally return to school with confidence. But the surgery raised ethical questions as well - namely, how young is too young for plastic surgery?

"I don’t really think there’s such a thing as an across-the-board age that’s appropriate for plastic surgery," says Dr. Ryan Mitchell, a plastic surgeon from Henderson, Nevada. "In the Gordon case, her ears were reshaped. It wasn’t a surgery that would have benefited her by waiting longer to do. It also was probably not a surgery that would have made sense to perform on her were she any younger."

Mitchell says that many clinics have a minimum age at which they are willing to operate on a patient. In 2007, the FDA ruled that teenagers must be at least 18 to undergo breast augmentation. According to Mitchell, this decision was made for both mental and physical reasons.

"By 18 the body should be done growing and be out of puberty. So, chances are you aren’t operating on a body that isn’t done growing yet," he says. "That, and at 18, legally you are an adult and should be able to make this type of decision for yourself."

But turning 18 doesn’t quite open the plastic surgery floodgates, either.

"The FDA doesn’t recommend women get silicone implants until they they are at least 22 years old," says Mitchell. "It is considered off-label. It can still be done, but it’s not recommended by the FDA. Whether a surgeon will use saline on someone under 22 is up to that surgeon, and is usually done on a case-by-case basis."

For example, sometimes the patient’s skin is too thin to use a saline implant, and the results would not look natural.

"In that case, the surgeon may make the executive decision to use a silicone implant on a patient under the age of 22," says Mitchell.

Mitchell is careful to note, however, that the FDA does state that if there is a "deformity" or a need for reconstruction, silicone implants are appropriate for women under the age of 22.

"Basically, we are trying to make sure that young women are choosing plastic surgery for the right reasons, and that they understand the permanence of their decisions," he says. "Those things come with maturity. But at the same time, we can do rhinoplasty surgery on younger teens, and ear pinning. It really just depends on the patient."

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_113662621.jpgWith medical care costs in the United States among the highest in the world, getting quality care can be difficult for some patients to afford - especially if they lack medical insurance, or if their care is not covered by insurance. As a result, some creditors have created medical-financing programs to help address this issue.

Lenders like CareCredit, Sofi and Lightstream offer private financing for patients seeking to pay for everything from dental surgery to plastic surgery and even pet procedures. But while these credit programs may seem like a straightforward way to break up costly medical bills without having to delay the care you need, many consumers don’t realize some credit programs come with hidden pitfalls that could end up costing them a lot more than they bargained for.

The problems often begin because patients don’t realize they’re enrolling in private financing. That’s because it wasn’t too long ago that many doctors offered payment plans through their practice. Today, while some still offer this service, collecting debts has proven to be too costly and time consuming, and many practices have instead opted to accept private credit plans.

"Private credit plans allow the doctor to receive the payment in full, up front, without the patient having to wait to receive treatment," says Dr. Ryan Mitchell, a plastic surgeon from Henderson, Nevada. "I believe it streamlines the payment process by taking the doctor out of the equation. The last thing your doctor wants to do is nag you for payment."

Unfortunately, while these credit plans do have their benefits, some patients simply don’t understand what they’re signing up for when they apply for financing. For example, some plans offer zero interest if the balance of the loan is paid within a specified amount of time, but some patients miss that crucial last detail.

"The zero interest is only if the patient pays the balance off in full before the time limit is up," says Mitchell.

If the patient fails to pay off the balance, an interest rate will apply - and in many cases, creditors will even tack on retroactive interest based on the full loan amount, not just the current balance.

"We advise all of our patients to pay very close attention to the deal they are getting," says Mitchell. "We want you to get your procedure when you’re ready, but read the terms and conditions of the loan before agreeing to take that money. It’s still a line of credit."

Tagged in: credit

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_189645428_20180330-193003_1.jpgPlastic surgery is one of those topics that everyone has an opinion about, regardless of whether they’ve had it done or not. For some people, it’s considered elitist and only for the rich and famous. For others, it’s considered unnecessary and risky, and to some, it’s just wasteful, because they feel people should just embrace what makes them different. But to a growing number of people, these outdated opinions about plastic surgery are becoming a thing of the past.

Recently, plastic surgery social network RealSelf released the findings of a survey on attitudes toward plastic surgery, and the results show signs of a major shift in thinking about the field.

"The good news is that when asked if their partner's desire to get a cosmetic procedure would change how they felt about their partner, 45 percent of respondents said it wouldn’t change how they felt about them," says Dr. Ryan Mitchell, a plastic surgeon from Henderson, Nevada. "Another 38 percent said it would depend on what procedure their partner wanted. Only 13 percent said it would make them think negatively of their partner."

While RealSelf did not provide any data for attitudes toward plastic surgery from previous years, Mitchell says it should be interesting to watch the changes from today on.

"Hopefully they will make this a regular survey and can monitor the changing attitudes toward this field over time," he says. "Because I think the more people see their friends and family and neighbors are accepting of this kind of surgery, the more they’ll be accepting of it themselves."

Other interesting things to note: Users in the 45-and-older age group were the most accepting of plastic surgery, while respondents from the Midwest had the highest instance of negative feelings toward plastic surgery.

Posted by on in Upper Face

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_74507461.jpgIt’s safe to say that big behinds are having their moment in the spotlight these days. With celebrities like the Kardashian sisters, Jennifer Lopez and Nicki Minaj stealing headlines left and right, all eyes are on them - and their curves. So, it’s not surprising that across America, women are flocking to plastic surgeons’ offices for silicone butt implants and Brazilian Butt-Lifts. But many patients don’t realize that these procedures come with a lot of different risks, as well as pluses and minuses. We asked Henderson, Nevada, plastic surgeon Dr. Ryan Mitchell what patients should know before they head to a plastic surgeon to pump up their posterior.

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_307246082.jpgAs the adage goes, "everyone loves a bargain." After all, what’s not to love about saving money? But sometimes that great deal isn’t so great after all. Take plastic surgery, for example. While patients may think they are being smart consumers by calling around to find the best price, that can easily backfire. Dr. Ryan Mitchell of Henderson, Nevada, explains why.

"The problem with doctor-shopping for plastic surgeons is that the fee you pay is based on the doctor’s skill," he says. "It’s not like getting a good deal on a toaster. You’re not getting an identical product for less by going with the lowest price."

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_240864379.jpgNo matter where you live, chances are you’ve experienced a challenging time or two in your life. But what sets us apart from each other is how we cope with those challenges. For the people of Greece, a surprising trend has emerged from the economic depression that has devastated the country. Dubbed the "lipstick effect," a record number of Greeks are turning to plastic surgery to help perk them up in this time of crisis, and it’s left a lot of people scratching their heads.

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_565403683.jpgA New York district judge has ruled that Springfield Medical Aesthetic, PC of Roslyn, New York, violated the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) when it denied breast-reduction surgery to three HIV-positive men in 2015. The lawsuit was initially filed by Mark Milano, and two other patients joined suit shortly after.

U.S. District Judge Analisa Torres ruled that the doctors at Advanced Cosmetic Surgery of New York failed to adequately evaluate the medical facts of each individual case when they declined to perform surgery on each of the three patients involved in the suit due to their HIV diagnosis.

Posted by on in Breast Augmentation

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_714361729.jpgChoosing to get breast implants can be a life-changing decision, but once you’ve made the decision to get them, many patients simply don’t know what to do next. Should you get saline? Silicone? "Gummy bear"? What size? And what if the implants are too small once they’re in - or too big? There are so many questions, but there’s no need to stress! Here’s a helpful guide to assist you in your breast implant decision-making process.

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-33.jpgMall bangs. Permanent lipliner. Bell bottoms. Trends come and go - some of them not soon enough - but when they’re here, they can cause quite a stir. This is nowhere more apparent than in the world of cosmetic surgery. A field that used to be associated with breast implants and rhinoplasties for the rich and famous just 20 years ago is now more commonly associated with Brazilian butt-lifts, Botox and hyaluronic acid lip injections for the selfie crowd.

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_53998624.jpgFor the average consumer, plastic surgery is an investment procedure, something that either requires financing or, at a minimum, a lot of budgeting to afford. But women in Hong Kong are reportedly taking matters into their own hands, spending money on at-home, do-it-yourself devices that promise to correct a lengthy list of problem areas without surgery. But do these so-called DIY devices really do anything at all? Plastic surgeon Dr. Ryan Mitchell of Henderson, Nevada, weighs in.

Posted by on in Liposuction

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-19.pngThose looking for the next big trend in plastic surgery needn’t look farther than the thighs. That’s because these days, thighs are quite literally getting their moment in the sun. With thigh-high slits appearing on runways and red carpets alike, the thigh is the body part celebrities and fashion icons will be showing off this year. For those fortunate enough to have naturally shapely thighs, the fashion options are endless, but for everyone else there’s a new series of procedures called thighlighting.

Posted by on in Upper Face

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-48.jpgWisdom can be a tricky thing. After all, we’re all raised to listen to our elders - but what happens when mother really doesn’t know best? When it comes to your skin care, your mom might mean well, but she may not realize that age-old wisdom she’s handing out is dangerously dated. Check out this list of top beauty myths and don’t keep making the same mistakes!

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-3.jpgA question we get asked a lot this time of year is, "Can I use my FSA or HAS account to pay for my plastic surgery procedure?" Of course, this varies by provider, but when considering using the remaining balance in your FSA or HSA account, consider the following.

Posted by on in Upper Face

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-10.jpgA recent study in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology found that a majority of American adults do not regularly wear sunscreen. According to the data, less than 30 percent of women and about 14 percent of men regularly apply sunscreen to their face and exposed skin before heading outdoors, and about 42 percent of women and 18 percent of men regularly apply sunscreen to their face only.

Though the study didn’t address why Americans are so lax about applying sun protection, it’s easy to theorize. It can often be difficult to remember an extra step to your routine, especially if you don’t think you need it. But even driving in your car to work or walking outside to the mailbox exposes your skin to dangerous UV rays. Worse yet, with an estimated one in five Americans expected to develop skin cancer in their lifetime, keeping your skin safe at all times has become especially crucial.

Posted by on in Skin Care

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-9.jpgIf you are one of the approximately 30 percent of American women or 14 percent of American men who regularly wear sunscreen when going outdoors, you should be proud of yourself for doing your part to prevent the damaging effects of the sun’s UV rays on your skin. But a recent study has revealed that if you’re drinking even one glass of alcohol per day, you could be increasing your risk of developing a form of skin cancer known as basal cell carcinoma (BCC) by 7 percent and your risk of cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (cSCC) by 11 percent!

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-8.jpgA recent study of 2,000 British women sponsored by United Kingdom-based Sanex Zero% found that British women experience 72 "bad skin days" per year. More alarming, those 72 days a year (or six days a month) are affecting the "mental well-being" of 61 percent of respondents. Though the causes of bad skin days vary - respondents cited everything from acne breakouts to dryness - most troubling are the effects those bad days have on the lives of the respondents.

That’s because, according to the survey, a full 25 percent of respondents have canceled dates over bad skin, and one-fifth have canceled plans with friends.

Posted by on in Skin Care

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_520982902.jpgSofter, clearer, younger-looking skin is something we all aspire to have. But unfortunately, sometimes in the pursuit of younger skin, we end up making skincare mistakes that make us look older than we are. If you are looking for ways to recapture that youthful glow, check your diet and your routine for some of these common skin-aging mistakes!

Posted by on in Non-Surgical Procedures

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_527745967.jpgWhen headlines recently alleged that celebrity Kylie Jenner may be pregnant, many wondered if the reality star would continue to get her signature lip fillers during pregnancy. In recent years, Jenner has become equally as well known for her allegedly cosmetically enhanced physique as she has for her reality show. But what many people may not realize is that cosmetic treatments like lip fillers and Botox aren’t safe for pregnant women - and no reputable doctor will perform them on a pregnant patient.

Why? Because there have been no studies proving the effects of Botox or fillers on an unborn child. While there have been cases of women getting these procedures without knowing they are pregnant and going on to deliver healthy babies, there is no guarantee that this will be true for every patient, and it's simply not worth the risk.

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_158562764.jpgShe’s beautiful, she’s polished and she’s becoming one of the most requested faces in plastic surgery today. Following in the footsteps of her fashion-mogul stepdaughter Ivanka, Melania Trump’s face is rising in popularity among patients looking for plastic surgery procedures.

Posted by on in Mid Face

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_290399447.jpgIt used to be that when people thought about plastic surgery, they considered it a luxury reserved for those in the very top tiers of society, such as celebrities and socialites. Today, thanks to lower prices and more surgeons, plastic surgery has become more accessible to the middle class, and though it is still often thought of as a luxury, an increasing number of Americans have undergone plastic surgery procedures.

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