Video chats put chin implant surgery front and center

April 17, 2012

What's hot in plastic surgery?

Use of specialized silicone, polyurethane and fluoropolymer materials to augment chins.

Dr. Darrick Antell sizes up a chin. Source: ASPS

Chin augmentation grew more than breast augmentation, Botox and liposuction combined in 2011. The procedure soared in popularity for women and men, with the largest increase seen in patients age 40 or older.

That's according to new data from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). One of the reasons: booming use of video chatting, such as Skype.

"The chin and jawline are among the first areas to show signs of aging. People are considering chin augmentation as a way to restore their youthful look just like a facelift or eyelid surgery," said ASPS President Malcolm Z. Roth, MD. "We also know that as more people see themselves on video chat technology, they may notice that their jawline is not as sharp as they want it to be. Chin implants can make a dramatic difference."

One user cited in a press release issued by the ASPS (Arlington Heights, IL) is Lizette Stephens, a manager for a major software company.

"I do a lot of video chats and I'm in a lot of photos and noticed that my double chin was very pronounced. It really, really bothered me. I wanted to do something about it to get a more profound profile and more definition in my chin area," said Stephens.

Stephens received a chin implant from Dr. Darrick Antell (New York City), who commented: "We know that CEOs tend to be tall, attractive, good-looking people. We now know that these people also tend to have a stronger chin. As a result, people subconsciously associate a stronger chin with more authority, self-confidence and trustworthiness."

The following are other cosmetic procedures that saw an increase in popularity in 2011:

  • Lip augmentation: 49% increase,
  • Cheek implant: 47% increase,
  • Laser skin resurfacing: 9% increase,
  • Soft tissue fillers: 7% increase, and
  • Facelift: 5% increase.

Many major polymer producers remain leery of the implant market, a residue of the controversies in the 1980s and 1990s over silicone breast implants. From a major chemicals' company perspective, the risk with human implants is great and the potential rewards not so great. In some cases, medical-grade polymers are used for implants, but their use is not supported by the producer.

As a result, specialized companies have emerged to supply implant materials.


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