Top Aesthetic Medicine Trends for 2013: Stem Cells for Skin Rejuvenation

According to the International Association for Physcians in Aesthetic Medicine (IAPAM), “…with the Affordable Healthcare Act now moving forward, successful physicians will need to incorporate synergistic non-insurance based modalities into their practices, from advanced acne treatments to hCG for weight loss. Also, price will be a factor in 2013.  While the economy is improving, more and more patients are using social media to seek out aesthetic services in their area, at the best price.”  

Introduction

As our population ages and more Baby Boomers find themselves working past traditional retirement age, more professionals are turning to aesthetic medicine to help them be more comfortable as they try to stay competitive.  The IAPAM published an article listing the treatments it sees as increasing in popularity for 2013, as driven by this baby-boomer market.  In a short blog series, we will look at IAPAM’s list of the top treatments.

Stem Cells for Skin Rejuvenation

We start our blog series on the top trends by looking at Stem Cells used for Skin Rejuvenation.  According to the IAPAM article,

“Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy and stem cells enriched treatments are evolving.  In 2013, PRP therapy will become more mainstream as: its popularity grows, physicians become more aware of this therapy as being used by competitors and colleagues, and the cost of the therapy declines so that it is comparable to botox and dermal filler treatments.

PRP therapy has been widely used in sports medicine and wound management since the late 1990’s.  However, in the early 2000’s, it was found that the topical application of the growth factors contained in PRP “stimulated the rejuvenation of photoaged facial skin, improving its clinical appearance and inducing new collagen synthesis.” Further, the injection of PRP has gained popularity in the last decade, “since it secretes various growth factors with roles in skin regeneration and may induce the synthesis of collagen and other matrix components by stimulating the activation of fibroblasts, thus, rejuvenating the skin.” (Source:  Dae Hun Kim MD et al. Annals of Dermatology. 2011 November; 23(4): 424–431.)”

The Vampire Facelift

Step into 2013 by offering your patients the very best in PRP procedures:  The Vampire Facelift developed by  Dr. Charles Runels.   The Non-surgical Vampire Facelift® Procedure using Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) from RegenLab has been found, in recent studies, to be effective in the rejuvenation of photo-aged skin and wrinkle reduction when used as a dermal filler.  In his comments about the Vampire Facelift, Dr. Alan Gondinet is quoted as commenting, “This treatment, which has also been titled in the press as ‘Dracula therapy,’ is designed for patients that are looking for a natural treatment without the risk of allergic reactions or rejections like there is with (other filler substances like botox) .  The patient acceptance is superior to most other aesthetic treatments and it is facinating to see what results our own biological material can achieve…”  

The Vampire Facilift can expect to grow in popularity as the trend towards “organic” treatments continue, as expected by the IAPAM.  Learn more about Vampire Facelift.

Vampire Facelift featured on The Doctors.

Billion-dollar Nonsurgical Market Fuels Growth of Physician-directed Spas

The following excerpt from an article originally published in “Medical Economics” offers some great food for thought on how to expand your current practice to include high-demand aesthetic treatments and procedures:

  • “Offering cosmetic services could help you be part of a growing market.
  • Many PCPs are starting with onabotulinumtoxinA, temporary fillers, dermabrasion, chemical peels, and photorejuvenation. You might consider the Vampire Facelift or the EndyMed PRO for non-invasive skin rejuvenation, skin tightening and anti-aging treatments.
  • Consider all the costs including equipment, office space, scheduling, and patient demand.”
“Americans spent $4.1 billion on nearly 8 million nonsurgical cosmetic procedures 2 years ago, according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS). Not only is the market believed to be growing, it’s doing so outside traditional dermatology and plastic surgery specialty areas.
In fact, an increasing number of physician-directed spas are opening in an effort to reshape practice profitability and expand the service mix.Consider that about 5 million nonsurgical cosmetic procedures were performed by aestheticians last year, frequently in a spa setting, says Jeff Russell, executive director of the International Association for Physicians in Aesthetic Medicine (IAPAM), based in Las Vegas, Nevada. Many primary care physicians (PCPs) have decided to meet demand for these services by actively controlling the “med” part of these “medspas.” According to Russell, internists, family physicians, and obstetrician/gynecologists dominate the IAPAM’s training classes.Their interest in the field makes sense when you consider that the bulk of cosmetic procedure clients

are the very people who dominate the patient panels of internists and family physicians. Women aged 35 to 50 years have 44% of these procedures, whereas women between the ages of 51 and 65 have an additional 20%.

As Houston, Texas-based consultant Reed Tinsley, CPA, says, “If you have a fairly young patient base, why let patients go to a dermatologist for basic cosmetic work?” Keith Borglum, CHBC, of Professional Management and Marketing in Santa Rosa, California, adds that PCPs are simply responding to patient demand, especially in areas underserved by dermatologists.

Both consultants agree that having a physician’s credentials tied to a medspa’s service mix adds credibility even if the procedures are not required to be performed by a physician.

Interestingly enough, an IAPAM survey found that 78% of women aged 21 to 60 consider medical credentials important when choosing an aesthetic treatment provider, and most of them would prefer to receive injections and fillers in a medical environment. Although all spas offer these treatments, most of them are not owned by doctors, and physicians often do not provide most treatments themselves.
How can you determine whether adding aesthetic procedures will work for you? Start slowly.

“We recommend that physicians gradually integrate these services into their practices, perhaps seeing aesthetic patients from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Wednesdays to start,” Russell says. “They can leverage their existing overhead that way and see if they enjoy it.”

The beauty, Russell adds, is that you could start offering these procedures with relatively little upfront capital and potentially reap the benefits of a new cash-based service.”

If you do not have a big enough facility to separate Aesthetic patients from sick patients, adapt the schedule, says Alberto Carro, MD (left). By keeping costs down, he was able to make a profit his first year offering cosmetic services.”

Thanks to Medical Economics for this helpful article.  Read more in Medical Economics about a few considerations to help you evaluate how you might expand your practice.