miércoles, 1 de julio de 2015

When it comes to Skincare Products: What Does Really Work?

The other day a patient asked me what really works to use on the skin. There are so many products on the market and all of them claim to work. This is not an easy question to answer, because if a topical agent has undergone stringent testing to prove efficacy, the FDA will classify it as a drug and it can’t be sold. So there really has to be 2 different ways of looking at beauty products: those that do have clinical trials that show efficacy and those that consumers have consistently determined that a product works.

So what are the most common things that actually work?

Retinol (vitamin A)—initially introduced as Retin-A®, which was available only as a prescription, there are now many products that contain Retinol that improves the appearance of sun-damaged skin, helping with fine lines, changes in pigment and many other benefits.

Vitamin C—shown to be effective in protecting the skin from free radicals and sun damage. Available in many forms but be sure that what you buy is bright yellow and remains yellow throughout use. If it turns color it is no longer effective. You can see our Serum C product page for further information.

Vitamin K—shown to decrease the appearance of bruises and dark circles. There are a number of forms so be sure the ingredient you buy is phytonadione.

Glycolic acid—lots of data supporting its ability to remove dead skin cells and make the skin look fresher

Salicylic acid—removes blackheads and helps clear and prevent acne.

When it comes to lines that contain antioxidants there are few clinical trials so the dependence on consumer opinion becomes important and La Peau from Switzerland is one of the best. Jan Marini products also live up to their marketing and so does products that carry Fred Brandt’s name.

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martes, 9 de junio de 2015

The FDA and Filling Materials – What to Have in Mind?

The Food and Drug Administration has issued a warning regarding the side-effects of filling materials injected into the face. Although it is certainly true that every medical procedure has the potential for side-effects including fillers, one must look at the facts behind the issue.

Filling Materials: Some facts

The most serious side-effect listed is blindness, which is NOT a side-effect of fillers per se. It is a side-effect of injecting any material in the area of the frown lines and has been documented in fewer than a couple of dozen patients in over 50 years of injections into this area from fillers to fat to cortisone etc.

It is certainly possible to inject into a small blood vessels or against a blood vessel in the face and that may eventuate in an area of dead skin and a scar. I have had this side effect occur 3 times in the last 30 years I have been injecting and only once did it leave a scar.

The issue of Training

This entire issue brings to the fore another point and that is that there are too many inexperienced and untrained people injecting these substances some of whom are not even medical professionals. Every patient should check the credentials of the doctor they are contemplating getting these injections. The best case scenario is that he is a board certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon with a great deal of experience with injectables. Occasionally, a nurse injector who has been well trained and with a lot of experience can be well qualified.

Watch out for those who are injecting fillers and are not well trained, e.g. taking a weekend course to “learn” how to perform the procedure. It is very true in this situation for the buyer to really beware.

If you or your cosmetic staff want to be trained by Dr. Melvin Elson, click here and contact us today!

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jueves, 21 de mayo de 2015

May 22nd – Friday is not Fry Day

This coming Friday the American Academy of Dermatology and the Skin Cancer Foundation have dedicated this day, May 22, as a day to remember not to fry your skin in the sun or in tanning beds.

Preventing Skin Cancer

Skin cancer is an epidemic in this country and this day should prompt you to think and do a few things for your skin and overall health:

  1. Use a sunscreen every morning with SPF 15 or 30
  2. Stay out of tanning beds
  3. When exercising or at the beach remember sunscreens are not permanent and wash off easily and should be reapplied at least every hour
  4. Remember to apply sunscreen to your children—their skin is even more sensitive than yours
  5. Wear sunglasses with an A and B block because the sun also causes cataracts

Other tips

The most deadly form of skin cancer is malignant melanoma and great strides are being made in the treatment of this disease; however, still of the 55,000 who get this 10,000 will die. Even though the most common form of skin cancer, basal cell carcinoma, will not kill you, it can be very disfiguring and devastating. The other name for this cancer is “rodent ulcer” for good reason. In addition, the sun is the primary cause of the appearance of aging and sunscreen does help to keep this from happening as well.

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miércoles, 20 de mayo de 2015

Treatments for the Double Chin

I have been asked a number of times about treatment for double chin other than surgical intervention or liposuction and there are some available. Ultherapy, utilizing radio waves, was recently approved by the FDA and does a pretty good job.

Other Double Chin Treatments

Thermage, which has been around longer, uses a different wavelength and also works, but more slowly. The most recent FDA approval for this condition is called ATX101, which is an injection of an enzyme that destroys the fat and produces a little inflammation so that the skin might tighten. It takes a few treatments and is somewhat uncomfortable.

All of these methods are rather expensive with costs over $1000 and don’t forget if the skin is very loose it will not go up and give you a normal line. All these things should be considered and discussed with your dermatologist or plastic surgeon.

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martes, 19 de mayo de 2015

Common Errors in your Skincare

  1. Using soap on your face—soap is alkaline and changes the acid/base balance of the skin and dries it out. Use a cleanser or a beauty bar, such as Cetaphil or Neutrogena
  2. Using RetinA in the morning—always use it at night. The sun deactivates the molecule and makes it less effective
  3. Using sunscreen only while on vacation—use sunscreen with SPF 30 every morning—the sun is always there
  4. It is ok to use vitamin C cream that is brown— No it is not. Once the cream is no longer yellow, it is ineffective
  5. Patients with rosacea using Retin A—they should not because Rosacea is not a form of acne and the Retin A or retinol may irritate the sensitive skin
  6. It does not matter where skincare products are stored— Yes it does. Keep them in a dry cool place and don’t leave them uncovered in the bathroom. The lights there can affect its efficacy.
  7. Don’t take hot showers because they remove oil from the skin. The skin has oil only on the face, scalp and upper torso. There is none on the legs, arms etc.
  8. Cortisone cream over the counter is always safe. NO Do not use it on babies or young children and do not apply to the groin area as it might thin the skin
  9. There are products to apply to hair and nails to increase the strength. NO hair and nails are not alive, but products of the skin and cannot be affected by applying anything
  10. If I have herpes, I cannot transmit the virus when the blisters are not present. Yes you can
  11. Ringworm is contagious. Most of the time it is not

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lunes, 4 de mayo de 2015

Inexpensive and Easy tips for a Beautiful Skin

  1. If you like bar cleansers opt for Dove, Cetaphil, Neutrogena or CeraVeBeauty tips by Dr Melvin Elson
  2. Apply cool water to your face and cover with Vaseline for at least 30 minutes
  3. After a bath or shower, pat dry, leave a little moisture and apply Vaseline
  4. Drink 8 glasses of water a day
  5. Use sunscreen every morning
  6. Wear sunglasses outside that block UVB and UVA
  7. Apply insect repellant to your clothing, not your skin
  8. Apply Retinol at bedtime—RoC or Neutrogena—you don’t have to use RetinA®
  9. Don’t smoke anything
  10. Drink red wine in moderation
  11. Keep a steady weight

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miércoles, 22 de abril de 2015

A New Service

I have had some requests to travel to the patient’s house to consult and perform injections of Botox and filling material. Due to the fact that many of the patients have very busy schedules and cannot find the time to come to the office, I have decided to do this.

If you would like me to come to your house or office and consult with you I would be glad to do so. Contact me via email, on this website, call me at 615-441-5227. There is no charge for travel and the only requirement is that you be located within 30 miles of downtown Nashville.

Consultation fee is $150, botulinum toxin and fillers depend on the areas that you want to treat. In the event you simply want a consultation as to how to treat your skin and keep it healthy and beautiful, that is also possible with just the consultation fee. It is also possible and beneficial to check your skin for skin cancer if you have not had that done.

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martes, 21 de abril de 2015

Benign Skin Tumors: What are they?

There has been a great deal of discussion regarding skin cancer, but there are many tumors that occur in and on the skin that are benign. First of all, it is necessary to remember that the term tumor does not refer to cancer, but to “swelling.”

What are Benign Tumors?

There are so many of the benign tumors that I will discuss only a few here. Probably the most common are skin tags, which are little floppy outpouches of the skin that occur where skin rubs against skin or clothing. So they are common on the neck and eyelids and can also occur between the thighs.

They are easily removed by a doctor and leave no scar, Seborrheic keratosis is an overgrowth of the outer skin and is usually dark in appearance, which is why they are sometimes confused with malignant melanoma.

However, they are totally benign and cannot become skin cancer, are easily removed by a doctor and leave very little scaring.

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viernes, 10 de abril de 2015

How to Check Credentials on a Cosmetic Dermatologist?

This communication is in two parts. The first is for patients and the second for doctors. As far as patients are concerned, how do you go about finding and trusting a cosmetic surgeon? Some of the worst ways to choose a doctor of any kind is the yellow pages (anyone can advertise) and price (cheap is not always a good thing). The best way is to be referred to the cosmetic surgeon by someone who has seen him and is happy with the results of the procedure, knows he is available and can handle a side-effect should one occur.

The importance of checking credentials

Dr Melvin Elson Patients WebYou should not only feel comfortable with him, but you should feel free to ask questions. Has he had the proper training? Since there is not really a category of board-certification for cosmetic surgery, what is his background, and if he is board-certified, in what specialty? How did he get his training to become what he calls himself? Has he performed the procedure you are asking for? How many times? Any side-effects? Is he available and will take care of any side-effects? Can and will he show you pictures of before and after patients that he has performed the procedure?

These are the minimum requirements for questions to ask and you must be satisfied with the answers. If you are not, move on. It is your body, your face and if there are problems there may be consequences you don’t want.

For Doctors

Now, for doctors. There are a number of doctors who either want to stop practicing their specialty and start cosmetic procedures or just add cosmetic procedures to what you are already doing. There are a number of ways to get training. Sometimes you can get doctors in your area to allow you to spend time in their office watching and helping with procedures. There are also courses offered by various groups—but these are not all created equal. Check them out.

There are courses taught by doctors who are not specialists in the area you are seeking and some are not even licensed. Some of the courses are didactic only and some have hands-on but be very careful. If you are allowed ½ syringe of filling material and 20 units of botulinum toxin to treat one patient you are not by any means an expert and not ready to add these types of procedures in your office.

If you can find a doctor who specializes in the procedures in which you are interested and will come to your office and help train you on your patients that is probably the best way. It saves you time and money out of the office and you need not take courses you are not interested in and are not planning to add to your practice. It is also much less expensive because you are still in the office seeing patients, the fee charged is much less than any weekend course. Additionally, your patients can see you are actually trying to train and learn from an expert to help them.

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jueves, 9 de abril de 2015

Dr. Melvin Elson: First-rate Instructions On How To Search For A High-quality Cosmetic Surgeon

http://www.drmelvinelson.com Dr. Melvin Elson TN (615) 441-5227: Discusses the issue and gives Exceptional Information On How To Obtain An Excellent Service In Burns TN For more information on this topic can contact Dr. Melvin Elson at: Dr. Melvin Elson 4081 TN-96 Burns TN 37029 (615) 441-5227

miércoles, 8 de abril de 2015

Spring and your Skin

Finally after one of the worst winters on record Spring is coming in. With it come warmth sunshine, southerly breezes, singing birds and new problems for the skin.

Healthy Skin Tips for the Spring

Since we are outside more and there are more things out there from flora and fauna, there are new challenges to keep our skin healthy. First and foremost, don’t forget to use your sunscreen with SPF 30 every morning. Your skin is not used to getting sun as much and can easily burn as well as accumulate more damage.

Spring and healthy skinFrom the garden comes beautiful new flowers and poison ivy. Poison ivy is ubiquitous and virtually everyone is allergic to it. The old adage “leaves of 3, let them be” is true, but poison ivy dermatitis can also be obtained from the stem or even the root. It can grow as a vine, a shrub or even a little tree.

If you want to kill it, don’t try to cut it down but use a herbicide meant for poison ivy to do so—cutting it down exposes you to the juice. If you must work near poison ivy wear protective gloves and wash the gloves before removing them and then wash your hands and arms. If you do get the rash, which is usually blisters in a line, apply baking soda paste to dry up the blisters and 1% hydrocortisone cream twice a day for the itching. You can also take over the counter Benadryl 12.5mg every 6 hours if needed. If your eyes are involved and start to swell you should consult a doctor.

Another hazard comes from the various insects that begin to stir this time of year. Obviously, it is best to avoid any stinging insect, but not always possible. Certainly, if you know you are allergic to any type of sting you must carry and epi-pen with you everywhere you go and know how to use it. If you are stung by a bee, yellow jacket or wasp and are not allergic, take 2 aspirin and apply cold compresses. If there are multiple stings, go to the emergency room.

Some other secrets

There is also the possibility of snake bite but in the spring they are usually pretty sluggish and you should be able to avoid them. If; however, you do get bit do NOT self-treat. Go to the nearest emergency room and if possible take the DEAD snake with you—it sounds crazy but there is no other way to know what type of antivenom to give you.

Swimming pools and lakes create another hazard—drowning. On the lake wear a life jacket. Watch children in the pool every second and learn from the Red Cross how to do CPR on both adults and children.

Learning a few of these simple things can help you have a safe, happy and healthy Spring.

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lunes, 6 de abril de 2015

What is a Dermatologist?

A great deal of time and effort has been spent here and in other areas as to what constitutes someone specializing in cosmetic procedures, which I do; however, I am a board-certified dermatologist as well.

How is a Dermatologist Trained?

A number of people do not understand what a dermatologist is and how he is trained. Although there are some variables as to the path taken all dermatologists have a similar course to mine. I graduated from college with a bachelor’s degree and then went to medical school where I obtained my MD (medical school is another 4 years).

After that I interned at a hospital for 1 year in internal medicine, although some intern in surgery or pediatrics etc. After internship I spent 3 years in a dermatology residency learning the ways the skin functions, the problems that it undergoes and how to treat them. After being in practice one year, I then became eligible to take the dermatology board exam, which is an intensive full day written exam and if passed a 2 day oral exam. I then became board-certified.

This is a common pathway to becoming a board-certified dermatologist and most take this or a similar pathway. The questions you should ask are:

1. Are you a board certified dermatologist?

2. Where did you obtain your residency in dermatology?

3. Do you have a special expertise in one area such as pediatrics, geriatrics or cosmetic?

Always be certain the doctor you are choosing to be your dermatologist is a dermatologist and not someone who just likes to treat skin disease.

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viernes, 27 de marzo de 2015

The Psychology of Beauty

Everyone wants to be beautiful. A woman wants to be as beautiful as possible and a man as attractive as he can be. Why? Well, the way we look impacts how we feel about ourselves and how others perceive us—or at least how we perceive they do. In other words, it is all about self-esteem. As I teach doctors around the world, I remind them that although it seems we are in the business of making people look better (which we are) we are really in the business of self-esteem.

Self-esteem and beauty

This is also true in nature. If there is an unattractive member of a herd of any animal type, that animal is generally left out of many of the activities and it may be severe enough that he is not allowed to eat and will starve to death.

I have seen many examples in my practice of changed lives due to cosmetic treatments. The shy and embarrassed teenager with acne who comes out of the shell with the new clear skin. The bank executive who was embarrassed about his acne scars and not able to advance until the dermabrasion made his skin clear and he excelled. The older woman who no longer liked herself and thought others didn’t who blossomed after cosmetic procedures.

Psychology and cosmetic procedures

In one of my previous books, I asked a noted psychologist to write a chapter on beauty and the psychological impact and she pointed out many interesting facts. It is probably well-known that the really good looking girl in high school gets the date with the good looking football player, but there is a lot more to it than that. An attractive person is more likely to get the attention of a salesperson than an unattractive one. Good looking people tend to get seated in a restaurant sooner and at better tables. They get better deals on items for sale and get taxis sooner etc. But the most surprising fact she brought out was that better looking people get better medical care!

So, cosmetic procedures, trying to look your best is more than trying to get a pretty face. Self-esteem! And it has also been shown that one of the most important factors in how well and how long you will live is self-esteem.

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miércoles, 25 de marzo de 2015

An Explanation on Stem Cells

One of the new buzz words in the media is stem cells and there are already a number of products on the market that claim that they contain stem cells and they perform miraculous tasks. But, what are these and where are we as scientists in the process of utilizing them?

Stem cells are cells that have the potential to grow into another type of cell. The controversy that you may be familiar with is the use of embryonic stem cells, but there are adult cells that have the same potential—these are in the bone marrow and skin cells.

Researches on Stem Cells

There is a significant amount of research ongoing around the world as these cells have the potential to aid in the treatment of cancer to the appearance of aging. But there are no products on the market at the moment that have been proven to help the skin in any way.

There are many questions about these products on the market that claim they have stem cells and that they will provide benefit. First of all, where do the cells come from? How are they processed? How are these products formulated to get the stem cells in and activate them? And, of course, what clinical proof is there that the product does anything at all.

My Advice

What I can advise you at the moment is that if you are considering buying a product that claims there are stem cells in the product and that the product will decrease the appearance of aging of your skin, simply do not buy it.

There are; however, centers around the world that are not only performing good research but actually treating some diseases and getting results—from MS to spinal cord injuries, but these too are experimental and have a long way to go before they are standard and available treatments.

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The Hormone Secret by Dr. Tami Meraglia

The Hormone Secret by Dr Tami Miraglia My good friend Dr, Tami Meraglia from Seattle, WA will be releasing her new book The Hormone Secret in April. At this time you can preorder at her website or mine.

This book is a compendium of what occurs as we age and how we can reverse the various problems associated with the changes in hormones that occur. It is very well written and easy to understand and put to use.

It will be available in book stores soon, but you can get yours now. It will change your life!

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lunes, 23 de marzo de 2015

Cellulite Problems and Solutions

Of the many things about which there is confusion in cosmetic medicine, one of the most prevalent is cellulite. It was described centuries ago and until recently was still thought to be nothing but an abnormal accumulation of fat. Nothing could be further from the truth. There are many people who are overweight and don’t have cellulite and there are very thin people who do.

Cellulite is the exclusive domain of women who are past puberty. Men do not get cellulite and it is estimated that 95% of women have some degree of cellulite at some time in their lives. Since it is not merely fat accumulation, both diet and exercise are totally ineffective in reducing its appearance.

Cellulite: Why does it appear?

In actuality, cellulite is a condition of the blood vessels in the fat under the influence of estrogen or female hormone. It can be manifest as simply dimpling of the skin to canals and valleys to severe overlapping of the skin over itself. It occurs on the thighs, buttocks and some on the abdomen. There is no treatment available in any spa or doctor’s office that has been shown to be really effective.

There are; however, treatments available that when applied topically to decrease the appearance of cellulite. It has been shown that caffeine reduces the fat, while certain antioxidants like vitamin C protect the areas and prevent further damage. It is well-known that the inclusion of vitamin A or retinol in a formulation not only increases the effectiveness of the active ingredients but act to increase the presence of cells that will increase the healing process in the areas of cellulite as it decreases the inflammation.

One of the main products available for the treatment of cellulite that actually has been clinically shown to be effective is ResolutionMD’s cellulite product, which is available on this website.

So, you can begin to get into shape for the season of showing off your smooth body by getting this product and start using it.

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viernes, 20 de marzo de 2015

Board Certification: What is it and Why does it Matter?

This is a term that most of you are familiar with, but what does it mean? First of all, not every so-called board is real. The only boards that mean anything to medical peers are those that are recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties and there are, of course, a number of them.

What is a Board Certification?

The ones that concern us at this point are the American Board of Dermatology and the American Board of Plastic Surgery. To become board certified in a specialty requires a number of things. The doctor must complete medical school and specialty training in that specialty. He then becomes board eligible and is able to take an examination given by his peers to become board certified.

There is a written part of the examination and a practical or oral part each usually lasting a day. If one does not pass the written part, he cannot take the oral examination. If he passes both he is then board certified in that specialty. That is very important to remember—he is board certified (i.e. his peers deemed him capable) in that specialty only. Board certification in one specialty does not confer any expertise in any other.

Why does it matter?

A physician board certified in dermatology is not certified, e.g. to deliver babies and someone board certified in OB/GYN is not certified to perform dermatologic or cosmetic procedures. It is also important for you to know that even though there are doctors who advertise that they are board certified in cosmetic surgery, that board is not recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties.

Some doctors take courses given by various societies over weekend periods and are given exams by them and become board certified by them in cosmetic surgery, but cosmetic surgery is not a recognized specialty and the societies do not comply with all the requirements of the authorities.

The primary lesson here is that if you are seeing a doctor and he tells you he is board certified, you need to ask him in which specialty and be sure he is what you are looking for. If he is board certified in internal medicine, that does not necessarily qualify him to perform any cosmetic procedure on you and if you are told he is board certified in cosmetic surgery, you need to ask how that determination was made. It is then up to you as to whether or not you wish to proceed with whatever you are contemplating.

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miércoles, 18 de marzo de 2015

Who is Really Qualified? By NBC News

Last week, Cynthia McFadden of NBC news presented a story about a doctor who took weekend courses to become an expert on cosmetic procedures and the problem patient that she interviewed.

This is just the tip of the iceberg as to what is going on with doctors performing procedures who are not really qualified, nurses acting on their own and even in some cases aestheticians performing cosmetic procedures.

Addressing the issues

I address all these issues and many more in my latest book SkinScam and I urge those of you who are contemplating allowing anyone to perform any type of cosmetic procedure on you to get a copy and read it before you let anyone touch you.

It is available on this website as well as Amazon.com as both a hardback and an e-book. Don’t hesitate—this is a very important step you are about to take and need the ammunition to be certain as to what you are about to do.

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viernes, 13 de marzo de 2015

SkinScam – Dying to be Beautiful

My latest book, SkinScam, has been on the market for about a year and I want to thank everyone who has purchased it and read it and for your comments. I still think it is very important for anyone considering any type of cosmetic procedure to your face or even a new skin-care line to read this book.

How to Read this Book?

It details a number of things you should know about that can really influence what you have done. The training that is gone through to be able to perform these procedures and unfortunately procedures being done with very little or no training.

It discusses those items that you can apply to the skin that actually work and those that are mostly hype. But it doesn’t stop there. There are a lot of procedures being performed that have no science behind them. There are even “doctors” doing procedures that have no business going anywhere near you.

I even know of a doctor who taught in a hospital how to perform a new procedure that has been developed to improve the appearance of the face. Unfortunately, he was not in practice and not even licensed. So how did he “learn” how to do this? THE INTERNET

Things are really going from bad to worse in the cosmetic field as to all the people entering who have no business doing so. I urge you to get this book, read it and digest it. It is available on this website and at Amazon.com

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miércoles, 11 de marzo de 2015

Vitamin K Explained

Under-Eye-Capsules-from-Dr.-ElsonNot a great deal is known by the lay public about this very important vitamin. It was discovered about 100 years ago that this compound aided in clotting and received the name vitamin K from the German for clotting. There are 2 sources that provide this vitamin in the natural state: green, leafy vegetables and the bacteria that inhabit the GI tract. Since newborns have sterile GI tracts, all of them receive an injection of vitamin K to keep them from bleeding.

How does Vitamin K Work?

One of the manifestations of sun damage and aging skin is the breakage of blood vessels resulting in bruising especially over the backs of the hands by simply tapping the skin against something. I started doing research on this a couple of decades ago and found that topical vitamin K both speeded the healing and prevented the new formation of bruises when applied. I patented this and since then many companies have developed products that contain vitamin K.

It is important to note that there are a number of vitamin K’s, but the most effective one is vitamin K1, also known as phytonodiaone. When you have a product that lists vitamin K as one of its ingredients, be sure it is phytonodione. Most of the time it is metadione (Vitamin K2) and this is not effective. Also, the product should be yellow and must remain yellow as it is used or it has deteriorated and is not effective.

The Best Vitamin K Products

Vitamin K products have been used to treat the bruising due to the sun as discussed, but also to prevent and treat bruising from surgery, injections and laser treatments. It has also been shown to help prevent recurrence of broken blood vessels after spider vein injections in the legs. Additionally, one of the most common benefits has been decreasing the appearance of dark circles under the eyes, especially when combined with vitamin A to make it absorb better. The combination is available on this website in the A/K capsules from Quintessence.

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lunes, 9 de marzo de 2015

Vitamin C – How to Use it to Improve Skin Quality?

Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) has been known for over a century. It was noted that sailors on long voyages developed bleeding gums, nausea, anemia and many other signs of a deficiency unknown then to be due to vitamin C deficiency (scurvy). However, the cure came when citrus fruit was kept on the ships to prevent the problems, particularly limes and then the sailors became known as limies.

How does Vitamin C Work?

Vitamin C is a water soluble vitamin so that it is not stored in the body and you cannot get too much of it. This also means that the body cannot get a high enough concentration to get the vitamin into the skin.

Vitamin C is a well-known antioxidant, which means that it fights the actions of the sun. It is also important in the rebuilding and maintaining of healthy tissue, particularly blood vessels and collagen.

Research performed at Duke University about 30 years ago demonstrated its positive effects when applied to the skin and many products have been developed since then. All the topical vitamin C preparations protect the skin from one of the wavelengths of the sun and repairs collagen, which is one of the main constituents of the skin and as it becomes damaged is the main cause of the appearance of wrinkles.

Vitamin C Skincare Products

Although there are many companies selling vitamin C products for the skin, they are not all created equally. The product is yellow when you first open the jar or tube and must remain yellow for it to continue to be effective. Because once it is opened the vitamin C is exposed to oxygen and begins to turn brown, it is important to use a product that is formulated and packaged so that it remains yellow. Some companies will tell you that the product is still effective even if it turns brown. That is simply not true—it must remain yellow to be effective.

The proper method of use is to apply a small amount of the product in the morning after cleansing the face and prior to applying your sunscreen. Over a period of time you should notice a decrease in the fine lines and wrinkles over the face and a decrease in the sallow appearance.

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March Injectable Fillers Promotion

Dr. Melvin Elson would like to announce that, with every Filler Injection or Purchase of La Peau Skincare Product, you get a $200 off of your next Botox Injection.

This promotion is valid only during March 2015

For more information call (615) 441-5227 or email info@drmelvinelson.com

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jueves, 5 de marzo de 2015

Infomercials – What to Have in Mind?

Cosmetic InfomercialsYou cannot watch television for very long without being bombarded by an infomercial. You really need to understand what is going on in this infotainment advertisement. I have been involved in a couple of them and actually developed one with a country music star and a skin care line I made for her, so I am pretty well versed on how these things work.

The Infomercial Structure

As far as the format goes, the infomercial is not really a 30 minute show. It is 3 10 minute shows separated by calls to action—i.e. trying to get you to buy. As far as the products are concerned, there are some that have good research standing behind them and present products that work and do exactly what they say they are going to do. The best example of this is ProActive acne products. But not all fulfill the promises they present.

Some things you should know about how an infomercial really works. “if you are one of the first x callers, you get free shipping” Everyone gets it-this is trying to get you to call. “Call now and we will double the offer; you pay only shipping and handling”. This tells you that the product costs very little to manufacture and the S and H covers the cost.

Guarantees and Products

The product carries a money back guarantee. True. But you don’t know how long it will take to get your money back if you try. When you call, not only will they take your order for the product, but will try to sell you related ones—the so-called upsells. You don’t need to buy these at all. Also, do not sign up for automatic shipments unless and until you are certain you want the product.

Direct TV like home shopping network is similar and is often a direct outreach from the infomercial. This is a live show selling whatever product they are at the moment and works the same way as an infomercial. The main thing to remember is to stop and think—don’t act on impulse. Do you really need or want this item? There is no hurry—they aren’t going anywhere.

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lunes, 2 de marzo de 2015

What Does a Cosmetic Label Really Say?

There are some interesting nuances that the consumer should know regarding the labeling of cosmetic products. First of all, one needs to understand what a cosmetic really is. According to the FDA and believe it or not the definition is based on the Drug and Cosmetic Act of 1939, a drug is something that acts on the skin and changes it in some manner, whereas a cosmetic is one that merely adorns the skin. So, by definition of the FDA, a cosmetic cannot perform any useful function.

Reading the Labels

So, there are games that are played with the wording and additionally a new class of agents has appeared on the scene called cosmeceuticals. These are agents that are applied to the skin, which do have an effect on the skin more than just adorning them. The FDA does not recognize the term, but it does exist and is useful in the world of dermatology and cosmetic language.

Reading the labels of cosmetic products by Dr Melvin ElsonReading labels carefully can give you an interesting picture of what is going on in the industry. A product cannot claim it reduces wrinkles; it can only claim that it reduces the appearance of wrinkles. Reducing wrinkles is a drug claim; reducing the appearance is not.

If a label states that it retards or reduces aging, it contains a sunscreen. A moisturizer contains water (the highest concentration on the label is the one first and it is always water) and then has items that traps the water and makes the product smell good.

Fragrance free means it does not have a smell, but it does not mean it contains no chemicals that have a fragrance, because chemicals are added to hide the smell of certain chemicals.

Data on file simply means there is data at the company—may be good, may be bad. It doesn’t say.

Dermatologist tested means that the company paid a dermatologist to test the product, but again the results are not known to the consumer.

As seen on TV means just that—it has been on TV—big deal!

Go here if you want to see my personal selection of the best cosmetic products in the world.

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viernes, 27 de febrero de 2015

Your Skin and the Sun: Part Two

The sun is an interesting 2 edged sword, as we spoke in this article. We obviously cannot live without it, but it has many effects on us, including the appearance of our skin. In actuality our skin doesn’t really age as much as it becomes sun damaged. To see this look at the tops of your hands and the tops of your feet or even better the cheeks of your face and the cheeks of your buttocks. They are all the same age, but they don’t look the same.

Taking Care of your Skin

Skin and sun care tips by Dr Melvin ElsonLook at the carpet in your house by the window and the carpet away from the window. The sun does the same thing to your skin. It is interesting to notice that people who drive on the right side of the road like in the US have older appearing left sides of the face than right and those in UK have older appearing right sides of the face. UVA, which is one of the main components of energy emitted by the sun, penetrates window glass.

Sun-damaged skin appears sallow, has a lot of play on texture and a lot of play on color. Fine lines and wrinkles also appear on the surface. To treat the manifestations of sun damage the most important thing to do is to use sunscreen every morning as part of your daily routine.

Skincare Advice

SPF 15-30 is certainly sufficient and you will not only help prevent further damage as well as skin cancer, but the appearance of the sun-damaged skin will actually begin to reverse. At night the use of a retinol cream has been shown to improve the appearance of sun-damaged skin as well. It is best to use the retinol at night as the molecule is sensitive to sun and will not be as effective if used during the day.

Standard office treatment consists of chemical peels to reverse the appearance and laser resurfacing can also be of benefit.

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miércoles, 25 de febrero de 2015

Hair Loss: Treatments, Prevention and Causes

One of the most disconcerting things that occurs regarding our appearance is that we begin to notice our hair is thinning—both men and women. As a matter of fact, although everyone is familiar with male pattern baldness, female pattern baldness is actually much more common and is not really manifested as a slick scalp but a thinning of the hair.

Hair Loss Causes

Hair loss care and treatmentsTo begin to understand what can be done, it must be understood that hair is not alive; it is a product of the skin manufactured just underneath the surface.

There are many causes of thinning hair or baldness from wearing hair in a tight hair-do like a pony tail to hormonal changes. In men, as male hormone levels decrease the scalp hair stops growing in the front and on the vertex and if it is not treated the hair actually dies. To treat male pattern baldness, the ultimate is a hair transplant and hair transplants now have come to the point they look completely natural, not like corn sticking in a field.

But before that approach is taken, there are a number of things that are available. Rogaine® is available without a prescription and is effective especially in early stages of loss. It works better if used in conjunction with a retinol product, which can also be obtained over the counter. There is also a drug (Finasteride) that can be taken by mouth if prescribed by a physician. This drug does work and is used mainly for prostate enlargement and does have some side-effects.

What about Female Hair Loss?

The most common cause of hair loss in women is pregnancy. Hair grows in phases and in some areas the resting phase is long and the growing short (e.g. eyelashes), but in some the growing phase is longer and on the scalp at any time about 70% is growing and 30% resting.

During pregnancy the percentage growing is above 90% and then when the pregnancy ends it reverts back and there is a noticeable loss of hair. It is important to understand that this is temporary and is normal and the hair almost always comes back. This may also occur with the discontinuation of birth control pills.

Women also begin to have thinning hair as they age due to changes in hormones of various types and Rogaine actually works better for them than it does for men. Hair transplants are also done for women when necessary and desirable and work very well.

The main thing to remember is that if you are experiencing thinning hair, there is treatment available!

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sábado, 21 de febrero de 2015

Winter Excercise: Best Practices and Advices

Best tips for Winter Excersice by Dr. Melvin Elson MDIt certainly is true that winter is here and it is difficult to continue your exercise routine, but you really don’t have to give up running or walking outside. Just use a few tips to be able to be comfortable and still get in the exercise you need. You can maintain your level of fitness and your weight until Spring will eventually get here and then things will be even more enjoyable.

How to Keep Excercising on Winter?

First and really this is probably the most important. If you are on a road or even a sidewalk exercise going toward the traffic so you can be seen by the driver and you can see the driver and anticipate any movements. It is best if there is any traffic on the road your rout is taking you, not to use an iphone, etc.

If possible run into the wind going out and have the wind at your back coming back so that if you are perspiring the wind won’t blow on wet skin. You must protect your skin from the elements because temperatures even just below freezing can produce frostbite if you are out any length of time.

Be wary of your Skin!

Be sure to wear gloves—and even better are mittens, since the fingers will keep one another warm. Cover your head to prevent heat loss from the area. To prevent chaffing apply Vaseline to the most vulnerable areas—in between the thighs, the nipples and if your face is exposed and it is very cold, you can even apply a thin film of Vaseline for protection.

Always dress in layers, so that air is trapped in between each layer to increase the degree of warmth. It is possible, even in the winter, to become overheated and if so you can remove a layer or 2.

If the roads are icy or slick simply stay off them that day. There is no way to remain safe if you are sliding or if a car is sliding toward you. If you begin to feel sleepy or sluggish, stop and get to a safe place as soon as you can.

Winter running can be invigorating and just as much fun as it is in the summer, but use not only your legs, use your head!

More on Winter best practices for a healthy skin

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jueves, 19 de febrero de 2015

Does Botox Help Coping with Migraine Headaches?

Although there are a variety of types of Migraine headaches, they all have one thing in common. They are very painful. There have been many treatments tried from pain medications to hypnosis to positive feedback and they all fall short of relieving the problem.

Using Botox for Migraines

Recently, the FDA has approved the use of Botox® for the treatment of migraine headaches and I have used it a number of times for patients and they have all obtained great relief. One patient had a migraine every morning when she woke up for years and nothing really worked. I injected her with Botox and she awoke the next morning headache free for the first time in a long time.

I have had great success in treating migraine headaches as well as tension and other types of headaches. It is, however, very important to see a doctor who is experienced in this technique, because if injected too far down on the neck, it can lead to difficulty holding up the head.Botox injections for migraines by Dr Melvin Elson

How Much Does it Cost?

Cost will vary depending on how much toxin is necessary to obtain relief but generally a few hundred dollars is adequate. Although, it is effective in virtually everyone, there is a significant variety in how long the relief will last—generally a few months, but some patients have gotten relief for over a year.

There is no longer any reason to continue to suffer with this painful problem, as the treatment does work!

Contact Dr. Melvin Elson by Clicking here!

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martes, 17 de febrero de 2015

Botox Injections to Avoid Excesive Sweating

Excessive perspiration can be a terribly frustrating problem, both socially and emotionally. In addition, it can become very expensive as it can ruin clothing when the main problem is underarm sweating. It can ruin clothes in addition to being very embarrassing when in social situations.Botox injections for excesive sweating by Dr Melvin Elson

What is the best solution for Excesive sweating?

Over the years, dermatologists have tried many things in an attempt to control this problem from prescription compounded anti-perspirants to tranquilizers to medicine by mouth to attempt to block sweating.

Since there are certain areas of the body where sweating is control by a different chemical than the rest—palms, soles, a circle on the forehead and under the arms, the best treatment that has been developed for this problem is the injection of botulinum toxin.

Using Botox

First a test is done by applying iodine to the underarm and then tincture of iodine. The areas that are producing excess sweat turn black as coal. This test is not only important to determine how severe the problem is, but also is used in the future to observe the results and determine how much more needs to be done.

The Botox is then injected into the areas of the sweating throughout the underarm. It is not painful and has minimal side-effects. It is effective in a day or so and can last up to a year.

This is one of the most gratifying of all procedures performed with Botox as it is 100% effective and these patients are extremely grateful. The same procedure can be used on the palms and soles with just as good result to stop the problem of shaking hands with a soaking wet hand or feet that ruin shoes.

It is done in the dermatologist’s office and only takes a short period of time. There is no down time.

If you want to call Dr. Melvin Elson for an Appointment you can do so by using the details below:

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lunes, 2 de febrero de 2015

The Vampire Face-Lift: What is it and How it Works? – By Dr. Melvin Elson

Vampire Face Lift - What is itOne of the items getting a lot of attention lately (probably because of its weird name) is the so called Vampire Face-lift. The reason it is called such is that the first step is drawing blood (about 2 tablespoons). The blood is put into a tube and spun in a centrifuge to separate the layers of substances in the blood.

How is a Vampire Face Lift performed?

One of the layers on the top consists of a cell-like material called platelets. This is separated from the rest and saved to inject into the areas to be treated. Platelets are very rich in growth factors of various sorts and it is thought that this will stimulate growth of fresh collagen and repair the damages that the sun and various other factors have produced, when it is injected into the skin.

Unfortunately, although there is a great deal of press in the lay literature about it, there is not much true clinical trials that show its benefit. Sometimes it is mixed with known injectables such as hyaluronic acid and it is claimed that the platelets will make the injections last longer, but there is no proof that that is the case.

Despite the hype about this procedure and its weird name, I would not recommend this procedure until more data are accumulated as to both its efficacy and safety.

See all the videos by Dr. Melvin Elson down here:

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viernes, 16 de enero de 2015

Botox injections in Nashville, an Update – By Dr. Melvin Elson

Although Botox® has become a household name and is now the most common medical procedure performed world-wide, it is not the only FDA approved botulinum toxin. There are actually 3 currently approved by the FDA that have the same actions—Botox, Dysport® and Xeomin®.

Although they all possess the ability to decrease muscular function and improve the appearance of wrinkles, the only one that is pure toxin (no extraneous proteins) is Xeomin. It has the same effect as Botox and same side-effects and may have less of a tendency to invoke any allergy as the extraneous proteins are absent. It is also less expensive than Botox.

Uses and Benefits of Botox

What are the uses for these materials? The most common is to improve the appearance of the frown line (the 11’s) on the forehead, but also uses in the face include improving forehead lines, crow’s feet, lip line-s, lines under the eyes and can produce a lift of the face (so called Nefertiti lift).

It is also used to decrease the fine wrinkles over the face and the décolleté. Additionally, these injections can decrease the pain from migraine headaches and decrease the problem of sweating under the arms and on the palms and soles.

The injections are not painful, have very few side-effects (most common is bruising especially around the eyes), and it must be remembered that there is a delay in its action since it is actually treating the underlying cause of the wrinkles, i.e. the muscles. Most commonly it begins to work in about 3 days, reaches its peak in 7-10 days and will last anywhere from 3-8 months depending on the area injected and the skill of the injector.

If you want to consult with Dr. Melvin Elson about Botox injections in Tennessee, particularly in the Nashville area, you can click here.

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martes, 6 de enero de 2015

Rosacea: What is it and How to Prevent it? – By Dr. Melvin Elson

Although Rosacea was described as a clinical entity a number of decades ago, the etiology has remained a mystery until recently. It is characterized by redness over the face that continues to get progressively worse over time and eventually increases the appearance of blood vessels of the face with many breaking and leaking. One of the characteristics is that in one of the stages of rosacea, there is a significant breakout of stopped-up oil glands that has the same appearance as acne . This is the reason that the moniker applied to this condition is acne rosacea, which is incorrect.

What causes Rosacea?

Rosacea causes and treatments by Dr Melvin ElsonIt occurs both in males and females and is generally worsened by stress, alcohol, exercise, spicy foods and anything that will increase blood flow to the face. If allowed to continue untreated over decades, some will develop rhinophyma or an enlarged nose, characteristic of W. C. Fields. This is the reason the association has occurred between alcoholism and rosacea. However, there are many alcoholics who do not have rosacea and many with rosacea who are not alcoholics.

In addition to the problems with the skin of the face, there is also associated a conjunctivitis or inflammation of the eye making it feel as though there is gravel in the eyes.

Rosacea Treatments

Classically, treatment has been aimed at clearing the acne-like bumps and killing an organism that lives in the oil glands, hence the prescribing of tetracycline and a topical called Metrogel. The conjunctivitis was also treated with tetracycline.

Recent research, performed mostly in Ireland, has disputed most of these old ideas and delineates the fact that rosacea is actually a disorder of blood vessels and that accounts for all the manifestations of the disease, including the oil gland problem as the oil gland difficulty arises from the increased fuel to the glands (I.e. blood).

Clinical trials have shown that topical treatment of a drug that has been used for the treatment of glaucoma decreases the blood vessel problem and therefore clears the rosacea. This medication is now available by prescription under the name of Mirvaso.

The conjunctivitis should be treated with prednisolone 1% ophthalmic solution and should be administered properly. The eye, just as the skin, has memory, so that if treatment is started and discontinued too rapidly, the problem will simply return. The eye drops should be used 3 times a day for 2 weeks, twice a day for 2 weeks and then once a day for a month before discontinuing it.

It is also prudent for the patient to avoid anything that causes more blood to flow to the face. One of the strange characteristics about the skin of rosacea is that it is very dry—not oily—and requires significant moisturizing with good moisturizers. Topical steroids, which are often used to treat redness of the skin, may actually irritate rosacea skin.

If you want to treat your Rosacea by Dr. Melvin Elson, you can contact him by clicking this link.

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