Forehead Lift Procedures and Technology Continue to Advance, Providing Better Results

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Dr. Grant Stevens participates in a study that finds success in new fixation device that allows for excellent fixation and adjustment correction.

A preliminary report conducted by Dr. Grant Stevens studied the Endotine, a biodegradable fixation device for endoscopic forehead lifts. Previously, cosmetic surgeons could not agree on best practices with regards to existing fixation devices and techniques.

Many different opinions were held and supported with varying degrees of post-operative success. This study focused on the Endotine’s ease of use during surgery as well as the patient’s healing experience, elevation and palpability outcomes.

Technological advancements in cosmetic surgery techniques and methods continue to make elective surgery less traumatic, shorter healing periods and provide improved results. As public interest continues to rise, cosmetic surgeries have become some of the most sought after procedures requested by patients. In turn, surgeons have responded to the technological advancements and patient requests by approaching cosmetic improvements more holistically. Instead of focusing on individual features, more surgeons examine how features work together to create a younger appearance. Whereas face lifts were traditionally seen as the primary way to rejuvenate the face, forehead lifts are becoming increasingly more popular.

According to statistics compiled by the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, between 1997 and 2004 the number of forehead lifts increased by 73%, from 55,009 in 1997 to 95,212 in 2004.

Yet, as forehead lifts increased in popularity, the cosmetic surgery community still debated on best practices for this procedure. The study conducted by USC associate clinical professor Dr. W. Grant Stevens, sought to provide clinical data on the Endotine, a fixation device used in forehead lifts. The device was assessed in two ways under multiple criteria. First, it was evaluated during surgery by assessing the level of difficulty or ease in device placement and behavior. Secondly, it was evaluated after surgery for device palpability, patient pain assessments and healing results.

The Endotine is a biodegradable device that consists of a post on one side for anchoring to the skull and five tines on the other end for engaging the deep scalp tissues. Nine patients were studied for a three-month duration. Dr. Stevens conducted all surgeries and device surgical assessments.

“The Endotine device performed well without any problems or complications,” said Dr. Stevens. “It was applied in less than two minutes during surgery and allowed for adjustments after it was in place.” The ability to adjust the device could prove crucial as some level of elevation is often lost post surgery. In addition, the Endotine allows for an aesthetic elevation and arching of selective brow elements.

Two common complications from forehead lifts are hair loss and regression of elevation. Unlike many other fixation devices, no significant occurrence of hair loss was detected. The Endontine’s unique post-and-tines combination prevents a loosening and release of the scalp that is seen with single-suture devices.

“The results have been impressive,” said Dr. Stevens. “The Endotine proved to be easy to use with excellent healing properties.” While the device is biodegradable, the studied version was still palpable to patients at 24 weeks after surgery. A new-generation device that biodegrades more quickly and uses the same post-and-tine feature has been developed.

As forehead lifts have become increasingly popular and requested, it is important that a fixation device remain easy to use and cause minimal complications. The researchers in this study found the Endotine to perform well, be easy to use, and offer excellent results.

Dr. Grant Stevens is a California board-certified plastic surgeon and the Medical Director of Plastic Surgery Associates in Marina del Rey and Palos Verdes. He specializes in cosmetic plastic surgery and has been named one of America's Best Physicians in The Guide to Top Doctors. Dr. Stevens was nominated by his colleagues which makes this recognition especially prestigious and rewarding. He is an active member at Daniel Freeman Marina Hospital where he was the Chairman of the Department of Surgery for 6 years and the co-director of the Breast Center. He is also on staff at St. John's Medical Center and the Marina Outpatient Surgery Center.

The report titled “The Endotine: A New Biodegradable Fixation Device for Endoscopic Forehead Lifts” was published in the March / April 2003 issue of Aesthetic Surgery Journal. It was written by W. Grant Stevens.

For more information, go to http://www.marinaplasticsurgery.com.

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