In 2004, almost 12 million cosmetic procedures were performed in the United States, a 44 percent increase from 2003. Choices of procedures abound, and you can find many articles and brochures describing them.
But much of this information comes from the marketing departments of businesses trying to sell you their services. Reliable, objective information isn't easy to come by. That's why Harvard Medical School has published advice from two renowned cosmetic experts in its new special health report, "Cosmetic Surgery A to Z."
This clear, easy-to-follow report covers the most popular cosmetic procedures and surgeries. It also gives candid details about recovery times, how long results last and what you are likely to pay. It describes new advances in treatments, such as the recently approved procedure called the Contour Thread Lift, a more subtle alternative to the face lift in which the patient is awake and can offer input as the surgeon inserts threads to combat sagging skin.
Before undergoing any sort of cosmetic procedure, it's important to evaluate the complex, often daunting, choices. Misinformation abounds, and your appearance, money and health may depend upon the quality of information available to you.
This report also includes information on how to find a good doctor and how to set realistic expectations.
Procedures covered include: Botox; chemical peels; laser treatments; skin resurfacing; LED photomodulation; microdermabrasion; photorejuvenation; radiofrequency; soft-tissue augmentation (fillers and implants); and eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty).
Call 1-877-649-9457, or log on to: www.health.harvard.edu/CS .