Joel Schlessinger MD explains stacked tattoo removal

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2015
Joel Schlessinger MD explains stacked tattoo removal

Before and After – 1 single treatment and 2 stacked treatments

When patients want to have a tattoo removed, their first concern is often how long the process will take. There’s no way to remove a tattoo in just one office visit other than via excision, which is reserved for the smallest of tattoos and doesn’t work in many areas, but luckily, there is a way to speed up the process from about a year to just a few months. In this blog post, Joel Schlessinger MD discusses stacked tattoo removal and how this procedure works.

Stacked tattoo removal allows for several sessions of tattoo removal in just one sitting, Joel Schlessinger MD shares.

Since the 1960s, cosmetic surgeons have used lasers to remove unwanted tattoos. With early laser technologies, the results were not always ideal. The tattoos were difficult to remove and often left behind some scarring. Today’s lasers do a much better job of removing the pigment in tattoos. Even if the tattoo cannot be completely removed, many times it can be diminished or significantly lightened.

Stacked tattoo removal is a recent advancement that has made the removal process much quicker and easier for most patients. The stacked treatment offers the ability to perform four sessions in just one sitting. During this treatment, the doctor uses the same basic laser settings and each session is separated by approximately 20 minutes. This can shorten treatment time from a year or more to several months in many cases.

However, it’s important to remember that not all tattoos respond to the same treatment. Many cosmetic surgeons prefer to perform one single session first to make sure the pigments in the tattoo are responsive to treatment and there are no adverse reactions. Once your doctor knows how your tattoo will respond, he or she will be able to determine the best treatment plan to meet your needs.

Joel Schlessinger MD discusses how the tattoo removal process works.

Tattoo ink is made up of tiny particles that are placed into the skin with a needle. The tattoo removal laser works by delivering an intense pulse of light into the skin. When the color of the light matches the color of the ink, the ink heats up and vaporizes the particles. As these particles become smaller, they absorb into your body.

Some tattoos are easier to remove than others. Black, brown and blue inks are usually easier to remove while lighter colors like green, yellow, white, orange or purple can be more difficult. Generally, the ideal tattoo for removal should be no bigger than five inches in length and width. It’s possible to remove tattoos that are larger than this, but the area will need to be separated in to smaller sections and treated over a longer period of time.

Choose a board-certified cosmetic surgeon like Joel Schlessinger MD to remove your tattoo.

When you’ve decided you want to remove a tattoo, it’s important to seek treatment from a board-certified professional to avoid skin damage or other complications. Your cosmetic surgeon should be able to tell you what kind of results you can expect prior to any treatment. Because each tattoo responds differently, the professional you choose should also be comfortable working with various types of lasers.

Joel Schlessinger MD has been treating unwanted tattoos at his practice in Omaha, Neb. since 1997. He has three different lasers available to use, allowing him to treat a variety of colors and tattoo patterns that are usually difficult to treat. Before your procedure, he can answer any questions you might have, including how approximately many treatments you might need, if your tattoo will respond to treatment and what results you can expect.

Do you have questions about tattoo removal for Joel Schlessinger MD? Share with us in the comments.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger recommends the best time of year for cosmetic procedures

Monday, October 12th, 2015

Dr. Joel Schlessinger recommends the best time of year for cosmetic procedures
Deciding to have a cosmetic procedure done is a big decision and you want to make sure that you get the best results possible. Having certain procedures performed at certain times of the year will help you achieve this. Dr. Joel Schlessinger is here to explain when you should schedule your treatments throughout the year.

Treatments on the body may take longer to see results, explains Dr. Joel Schlessinger.

Some procedures require multiple treatments over a period of several weeks. To get your body ready for the beach, you’ll want to have your cosmetic procedures performed in early spring. Laser hair removal generally requires a series of five to seven treatments over a period of eight to twelve weeks to catch the entire growth cycle of hair. It is also important to schedule your appointments in the winter or early spring because laser hair removal cannot be done when skin is tan. The laser targets and destroys the dark hair follicle which is easier to pinpoint when skin is lighter so if your skin is too tan, the procedure cannot be performed.

Procedures that help reduce fat around the stomach, abdomen and thighs require multiple treatments. CoolSculpting, a non-invasive procedure, targets and eliminates fat cells by freezing them. The fat cells are gradually eliminated over a period of several weeks following your treatments. UltraShape is another non-invasive fat reduction procedure that delivers bursts of energy to target fat cells that dissipate over a period of a few weeks. With both of these treatments, it can take a couple of months to see the full results so Dr. Joel Schlessinger suggests having the treatment performed in the spring before you have to hit the beach.

Anyone who is looking to reduce the appearance of fat around the neck and chin can treat the area with Kybella. During a series of two to six sessions, the treatment is injected into skin and eliminates fat cells without harming the surrounding tissue. After the treatment, the area can swell for up to three days to a week so you want to avoid having the procedure performed right before a big event. . Generally, patients see results in six to eight weeks so now is the best time to schedule the procedure so you are ready in time for the holiday season.

Fillers and BOTOX®, explains Dr. Joel Schlessinger, can be performed any time of year.

Treatments that reduce the appearance of wrinkles around the eyes, nose, mouth and forehead can be performed any time of year. Occasionally, fillers can cause bruising so you do not want to have them done immediately before a big event. Dr. Joel Schlessinger recommends having the treatment performed at least two to three weeks before the event.

Hyaluronic acid fillers such as Restylane and JUVEDERM generally only require one treatment and the results can last up to six months. JUVEDERM VOLUMA™ XC is an FDA-approved hyaluronic acid filler that adds volume to the cheek area. The injectable gel gently lifts skin to create a fuller and more youthful contour. This treatment lasts up to 18-24 months so it is the best option for anyone who is not able to schedule an appointment every six months.

BOTOX® works by preventing repetitive muscle contractions that cause deep furrows on areas such as the forehead and between the brows. Dysport™ is similar to BOTOX® and is a newly approved FDA wrinkle relaxer that reduces the appearance of frown lines and wrinkles. With both of these treatments, you will see a relaxing of lines anywhere from three to four days after the treatment.

Do you have a question about these treatments for Dr. Joel Schlessinger? Ask him in the comments section!

Dr. Joel Schlessinger shares an article linking tattoos and bacterial infections

Thursday, August 20th, 2015

Dr. Joel Schlessinger shares an article linking tattoos and bacterial infections
Over the years, several studies have focused on the risks of tattoos, including the safety and sterility of the facility. A recent review in The Lancet looked at these health and safety concerns and found that one to five percent of people with tattoos contract bacterial infections, while others have an allergic reaction to the ink. In this blog post, Dr. Joel Schlessinger discusses these risks and why it’s best to think twice before permanently inking your skin.

Tattoo ink is not currently regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, which puts consumers at risk, Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains.

In many countries, tattoos are classified as cosmetics. While the skin’s barrier keeps topical cosmetics out of the body, tattoo ink is injected into living tissue. This is why many dermatologists and skin care professionals believe tattoos should be classified in a separate category. Tattoo parlors are currently regulated by each state and training requirements for artists vary widely.

Contaminated ink could lead to bacterial and viral infections, Dr. Joel Schlessinger says.

Much like the parlors and artists, tattoo ink is also fairly unregulated. There is no standard in place for ink ingredients. Most tattoo inks contain organic pigments, but some also contain dangerous preservatives, as well as contaminants like nickel, lead and arsenic. These additives can trigger infections and allergic reactions, especially in those with sensitive skin.

As a board-certified dermatologist and cosmetic surgeon, Dr. Joel Schlessinger has seen many patients with infections and other complications after getting a tattoo.

“As with any procedure, it is very important to be aware of the risks associated with tattoos, including infections,” he says. “We have seen both bacterial and serious viral infections with tattoos so my advice is to think twice before getting a tattoo.”

Dr. Joel Schlessinger also stresses the importance of seeing your dermatologist if you have any concerns. Experts believe the majority of tattoo complications go unreported and this further contributes to the problem.

“If you have a tattoo and are worried it may be infected, go to your dermatologist for an evaluation as it is best to treat it early,” Dr. Joel Schlessinger says.

Do you have a question about tattoos for Dr. Joel Schlessinger? Share with us in the comments.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains how firming body lotions work

Friday, July 31st, 2015

Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains how firming body lotions work

Plenty of skin care creams promise to tighten and tone skin while reducing cellulite. These firming body lotions might sound like a miracle, but there’s really no quick fix for dimpled or “orange peel” skin. In this blog post, Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains how firming body lotions work and what kind of results you can expect.

Firming body lotions work by moisturizing skin, Dr. Joel Schlessinger says.

The creams that promise to firm and tone skin are a temporary fix, meaning these formulas might initially provide results but they aren’t going to eliminate cellulite for good. Cellulite’s characteristic dimpled appearance is the result of uneven fat deposits under skin. Firming lotions provide a much-needed dose of hydration to smooth the appearance of skin. This moisturizing action also helps minimize fine lines and wrinkles, helping skin look more youthful and radiant. Additionally, firming products that are specifically designed to target cellulite often contain caffeine, which acts as an antioxidant and can help improve circulation.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger says the best way to fight cellulite is by combining a firming lotion with professional treatments.

Diminishing cellulite requires a combination of healthy diet and exercise, but sometimes even this isn’t enough. Fortunately, there are professional treatments that can help diminish the appearance of stubborn cellulite. Dr. Joel Schlessinger recommends VelaShape, a non-surgical procedure that uses elos technology to tone, contour and shape targeted areas.

There are also several at-home treatments to prolong your results following an in-office procedure. bliss FatGirlSlim Lean Machine is a vacuum massager that targets cellulite with a combination of rolling, lifting, suction and pulsing motions. The device provides temporary results, and best results are seen when it is used alongside healthy diet and exercise. SkinCeuticals Body Tightening Concentrate tightens, firms and lifts targeted areas with a cooling sensation. This treatment helps smooth and tighten skin on the abdomen, buttocks, thighs and upper arms in as little as eight weeks. ResolutionMD Cellulite Treatment System contains a body wash, a firming moisturizer and a renewal cream to firm, tone and tighten skin. When used as directed, this three-piece system provides results after six to eight weeks of use.

Do you have a question about firming body lotions for Dr. Joel Schlessinger? Share with us in the comments.

Joel Schlessinger MD discusses Botox for hairstyles.

Tuesday, July 28th, 2015

Joel Schlessinger MD discusses Botox for hairstyles

From correcting wrinkles to easing migraines, Botox has a wide range of applications that continue to evolve with changing trends. Most recently, Botox has been used to rectify excessive sweating in patients who suffer from hyperhidrosis, a condition that involves overactive sweat glands. Now, the process is being used to combat scalp sweat, keeping hair cleaner and more voluminous as a result. In this blog entry, Dr. Joel Schlessinger responds to an article from Medical Daily called, “Women Are Getting Botox Injections for Their Scalps to Keep Hairstyles Intact.”

Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains Botox.

Botulinum toxin type A, or Botox, is a neurotoxic protein used for a variety of medical and cosmetic procedures. It is typically injected in small amounts over a set period of time. Botox is most commonly used to correct wrinkles by limiting the ability of nerves to make muscles contract, essentially relaxing muscles to keep skin looking firm and youthful. Botox injections are also capable of decreasing nerve stimulation of sweat glands. This process is often used for underarms, hands and feet to reduce the activity of sweat glands in those areas. Now, the process is also being used to combat scalp sweat.
Botox injections to the scalp decrease the amount of sweat produced by sweat glands in the scalp. This keeps hair cleaner and helps maintain style and volume long after you’ve left the salon. Botox injections in the scalp are similar to injections in the face but affect a greater surface area. Typically, a dermatologist will inject around 20 units of Botox to the face. For the scalp, about 100 units of Botox are injected to cover the entire surface area.

Botox for the scalp has potential, says Dr. Joel Schlessinger.

The FDA has yet to approve Botox injections for the scalp. As a result, the procedure is not being widely performed by dermatologists, but Dr. Joel Schlessinger says that Botox injections for the scalp have potential. “While this sounds intriguing, I still have yet to do it,” explains Dr. Schlessinger. “I do think it would work well and lengthen the time between styling of hair. Clearly, there is work to be done before this is ready for prime time but it could be something that is common in 10 years so I wouldn’t dismiss the possibility!”

Ask a dermatologist, like Dr. Joel Schlessinger, about Botox injections to the scalp.

As with any medical procedure, Botox injections to the scalp come with certain risks. Typical side effects of injection, such as swelling, pain and bruising, are possible. If you are interested in exploring Botox injections for your scalp, it is important that you choose a board-certified dermatologist and cosmetic surgeon who has the skills and expertise to provide the best treatment for your needs.

Joel Schlessinger MD discusses navigating the cosmeceutical market on DermTube Journal Club

Friday, July 24th, 2015

Joel Schlessinger MD discusses navigating the cosmeceutical market on DermTube Journal Club
From the publishers of Practical Dermatology, DermTube offers a wealth of educational videos developed specifically for dermatologists and other industry professionals. Joel Schlessinger MD serves on the advisory board for DermTube and frequently contributes his expert knowledge through videos and other methods. In a recent video titled “Navigating the Cosmeceutical Market,” Joel Schlessinger MD talks to Nancy J. Samolitis MD about how cosmeceuticals are evolving and what effect this has on the skin care industry.

Dermatologists carefully consider products before recommending them to patients, explains Joel Schlessinger MD.

Ever since cosmeceuticals hit the market, many dermatologists have incorporated these products into their practices. Joel Schlessinger MD says that the only way for doctors to know which products are the best for their patients is to try each and every one.

“There are a huge variety of products out there and the benefit that we have as dermatologists is that we don’t just evaluate them based on the color of the tube or whether the product smells good, but we’re going to evaluate them based on their merits,” he says.

Dermatologists evaluate each product by looking at several factors including ingredients, clinical data, safety and affordability. This means that patients can feel good about using products recommended by their dermatologist.

“I think that there are a lot of things that we look at as dermatologists and we scrutinize with a much different eye than the average consumer.”

Joel Schlessinger MD discusses the possibility of the FDA regulating cosmeceuticals.

Recently, there has been some talk of the FDA starting to regulate cosmeceuticals. Joel Schlessinger MD discussed how this could potentially change the cosmeceutical market.

“Based on the FDA’s willingness or unwillingness to introduce sunscreens, I’m a little concerned about . . . the FDA getting cosmeceuticals under their purview,” he says. “At the same time, I like the thought of having some science behind cosmeceuticals and having the ability for companies to have a different track for approval of cosmeceuticals.”

When recommending products to his patients, Joel Schlessinger MD always returns to a few favorites.

Joel Schlessinger MD has tried many products over the years and he always comes back to a couple tried and true formulas.

“When I look for a sunscreen, it’s almost always going to be EltaMD,” he says.

Two of his favorite products from this brand are EltaMD UV Clear Broad Spectrum SPF 46 Sunscreen – Untinted and EltaMD UV Clear Broad Spectrum SPF 46 Sunscreen – Tinted.

“Additionally, we love products in our practice that have unique things that they treat,” Joel Schlessinger MD continues. “My son and I actually came up with a product called FixMySkin with 1% hydrocortisone in it. This product is a little balm that we can put on and it helps patients that might have dry skin issues, eczema, psoriasis or facial dermatitis.”

Joel Schlessinger MD and Practical Dermatology have partnered up several times over the years.

Practical Dermatology has been a co-sponsor of Cosmetic Surgery Forum since its inception in 2009. Led by Joel Schlessinger MD, this multi-specialty educational symposium focuses on the latest research, treatment and techniques in dermatology and cosmetic surgery. Practical Dermatology has been a valuable partner to Cosmetic Surgery Forum over the last seven years. Recently, the publication has also made significant strides in developing creative outlets to bring relevant content to the field.

Do you have a question for Joel Schlessinger MD? Share with us in the comments.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger discusses ATX-101, a new drug to treat double chins

Friday, April 3rd, 2015

Dr. Joel Schlessinger discusses ATX-101, a new drug to treat double chins
ATX-101, a new treatment designed to address excessive fat on the chin, was recommended for approval by an FDA advisory committee this week. Along with his staff at the Advanced Skin Research Center, Dr. Joel Schlessinger has conducted studies on this treatment over the past several years. Dr. Schlessinger has enjoyed working with ATX-101 since the beginning and is excited to add it to his practice.

ATX-101 offers a new way to treat excessive fat on the chin, Dr. Joel Schlessinger says.

This in-office procedure is a new treatment option to address double chins without invasive surgery. Dr. Joel Schlessinger has seen great results during clinical trials and is looking forward to offering ATX-101 for his patients.

“Based on the clinical trials, I am quite excited to have this in my clinic and will be using it for many of my patients who have issues with excessive fat on the chin,” he says.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger says this treatment is ideal for patients who want to address chin fat without liposuction.

“I don’t think it will entirely take away the need for chin liposuction, but it will clearly treat many individuals who have too little fat for liposuction but still have a clear need,” he says. “This is a huge bonus for our specialty and patients!”

The studies performed by Dr. Joel Schlessinger played an integral role in ATX-101’s success.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger and his team worked hard to see ATX-101 through its preliminary stages. Now with the treatment one step closer to receiving FDA approval, Dr. Schlessinger is excited to add it to his practice.

“Having worked on ATX-101 since 2007, it feels like my ‘child’ has been born at this point,” he says. “It has been a wonderful experience to be involved with this exciting new treatment option from the beginning.”

Do you have a question for Dr. Joel Schlessinger? Share with us in the comments.

Laser tattoo removal remains the best way to remove unwanted ink, says Dr. Joel Schlessinger

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

Laser tattoo removal remains the best method, says Dr. Schlessinger.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It is estimated that around 40% of adults have at least one tattoo, so it is no surprise that a tattoo removal cream would be in high demand. Alec Falkenham, a PhD student in pathology at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, is currently developing a topical cream that he hopes will eventually remove tattoos. However, Dr. Schlessinger believes it is too early to tell if this cream will be effective.

Bisphosophonate liposomal tattoo removal cream works by expediting the natural tattoo fading process.

When a tattoo is received into the skin, the ink pigments get eaten by macrophages, or white blood cells, to protect the surrounding tissue from the foreign substance. The cells then form the tattoo that is visible on the skin, and as macrophages are replaced over time, the tattoo fades. Falkenham’s cream targets macrophages with bisphosphonate to expedite the natural fading process.

Inspired by the connection between his pathology work and the tattooing process, Falkenham set to work creating the method for what he refers to as bisphosphonate liposomal tattoo removal. This technique allows the bisphosphonate drug to reach into the skin via a topical cream, eliminating the cells that contain tattoo pigment while leaving other skin cells untouched.

“There are many hurdles for this scientist to go through,“ Dr. Schlessinger says.

Dr. Schlessinger finds the idea of bisphosphonate liposomal tattoo removal intriguing, but cautions that those with tattoo regret not get too excited just yet. So far, research is still in its earliest stages, and studies have only been conducted using mice. Among the challenges are getting the bisphosphonate to actually penetrate the skin and testing the cream through what will probably amount to millions of dollars in clinical research.

“There is a lot of interest in this topic, but the future of the project and the cost estimates are unclear,“ says Dr. Schlessinger.

For now, he recommends that those considering a new tattoo carefully weigh that decision, and that those with tattoo regret seek a skilled, experienced dermatologist who can help them achieve their best laser tattoo removal results.

Do you have a question for Dr. Joel Schlessinger about tattoo removal? Let us know in the comments section.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger answers: are varicose veins dangerous?

Friday, December 26th, 2014

Dr. Joel Schlessinger answers: are varicose veins dangerous?

Varicose and spider veins leave many people unable to wear shorts or dresses because of their unsightly appearance. More than 40% of women experience varicose veins as they age but there are methods that can be used to treat this condition.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains what varicose veins are and what causes them.

When vein walls become weak and fail to circulate blood properly, pools of blood can form in the veins causing them to bulge. Varicose veins are most common in the legs and thighs and are often seen in individuals who spend a lot of time on their feet. This issue can also be hereditary and is more likely to appear if an individual is overweight, has a history of blood clots or experiences hormonal changes such as during pregnancy.

Varicose veins are common and generally painless, however they can cause discomfort and pain when walking or standing for long periods of time. In some cases, varicose veins can cause serious conditions such as venous stasis ulcers, or painful sores that occur when the vein does not provide enough drainage. Infection is also a risk if there is a buildup of fluid in the veins.

Treating varicose veins can prevent the risks, says Dr. Joel Schlessinger.

There are several treatment options as well as lifestyle changes that can help you deal with varicose veins. Maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly and avoiding long periods or sitting or standing can help reduce the likelihood of unsightly leg veins.

Other treatment options include laser therapy and sclerotherapy during which the veins are injected with solutions that close off the affected veins. Undergoing one of these treatments or combining them can help reduce the appearance of this common issue.

Do you have questions about leg veins for Dr. Joel Schlessinger? Ask them below in the comments section.

CSF Testimonial from Dr. S. Manjula Jegasothy

Monday, November 24th, 2014

Dr. Jegasothy

By Dr. S. Manjula Jegasothy

I have been attending Cosmetic Surgery Forum since its inauguration in 2007. I had known Dr. Schlessinger to be a stand-out lecturer, aesthetic innovator, compassionate physician and warm friend for sometime, so I was not only eager to support the conference, I knew that it would be well worth my time academically.

Attending the conference every year since then has been more educationally-rewarding and enjoyable than I expected. The registration and accommodation process is streamlined, while the Cosmetic Surgery Forum staff is friendly, competent and efficient. Requests are handled in a warm, personal style, rather than the “cold” corporate style of most other medical conferences I have attended. The format of the meeting itself invites total audience engagement, so that discussions are lively and entertaining. Plenty of time is allotted with each session for Q & A, which both encourages spontaneous learning from a larger variety of colleagues and discourages long “canned” lectures (with too many slides!) seen in many of our society meetings.

Because Cosmetic Surgery Forum is fun (Las Vegas during the holiday season is FABULOUS!) and educationally-unique, it attracts the highest-level aesthetic physician experts. This further adds to its value from a networking and extra-curricular perspective. My mother usually meets me in Las Vegas when I attend Cosmetic Surgery Forum, it is out “holiday season trip” together, and we never plan to stop! I cannot overemphasize how valuable Cosmetic Surgery Forum has been in my practice growth. You should attend – Cosmetic Surgery Forum is more than worth your time…

S. Manjula Jegasothy MD

President, Miami Skin Institute

Clinical Professor of Dermatology

University of MiamiMillerSchool of Medicine