Public Release:  Plastic Surgery 2009 news briefs

Selected news to be presented on Sunday, October 25

American Society of Plastic Surgeons

SEATTLE - Plastic Surgery 2009 News Briefs are designed to keep you up-to-date on embargoed studies and other news being presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) held October 23-27 in Seattle. All briefs are embargoed until the date/time they are presented. To obtain an advance copy of study abstracts, for media registration, or to arrange interviews with presenters, please contact ASPS Public Relations at (847) 228-9900, media@plasticsurgery.org or in Seattle, Oct. 24-27 at (206) 219-4726.

Botox Takes a Shot at Pain

Embargo for Release: Sunday, October 25, 2009

No longer just a wrinkle fighter, Botox® may have indications as a pain medication to fight Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), reports a new study presented at the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) Plastic Surgery 2009 conference, Oct. 23-27, in Seattle. Between 5 and 26 people out of every 100,000 have their lives significantly disrupted by some form of chronic pain. Traditionally, treatments for the nervous system-based pain disorder have included massage, physiotherapy, stretching and strengthening exercises, and heat/cold therapy. Despite those, many patients often continue to experience disruptive pain. The study found injecting Botox into the area affected by pain provides significant pain control. Eight patients suffering from severe pain received an average of nine injections - one every four weeks. All of patients reported a significant improvement (31.25 percent) in their daily pain control that was maintained for up to 17 months.

By the Numbers:

More than 5 million Botox injections were performed in 2008, according to ASPS stats.

Botox injections are up 8 percent since 2007 and 537 percent since 2000.

Study: "The Efficacy of Botox Therapy in the Treatment of Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome" is being presented Sun., Oct. 25, 10:35 -10:40AM PDT, at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center.

Panel: "How Painful - Treating the Patient with Chronic Pain" is being held on Sat., Oct. 24, 9:45-10:45AM PDT, at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center.


First-of-its-Kind Study Links Breast Reduction to Reduced Back Disorders

Embargo for Release: Sunday, October 25, 2009

According to new research presented at the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) Plastic Surgery 2009 conference, Oct. 23-27, in Seattle, women who have breast reduction surgery may be at a decreased risk for spine and other back disorders. Macromastia (overly large breasts) can be an unhealthy condition resulting in significant shoulder pain, back pain, and deep shoulder grooves caused by bra straps. In the study, women who had breast reduction experienced decreased stress in their lower back while performing a physical activity or task. In addition, participants reported dramatic improvements in their ability to perform dynamic movements and withstand static positions. To gather the results, eleven women, determined to need breast reduction surgery, participated in a biomechanical analysis/task that involved lifting a 5 lb. weight and responded to a questionnaire prior to and following their surgery.

By the Numbers:

According to ASPS statistics, nearly 89,000 breast reductions were performed in 2008, up 5 percent since 2000.

Study: "The Impact of Breast Reduction Surgery on the Low Back Compressive Forces and Function in Individuals with Macromastia" is being presented Sun., Oct. 25, 10:25 - 10:30AM PDT, at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center.


Breast Reduction May Lead to Cancer Detection in Patients

Embargo for Release: Sunday, October 25, 2009

There may be some new added benefits to breast reduction surgery. Testing tissue and fat removed during the procedure may lead to increased cancer detection, reports a new study presented at the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) Plastic Surgery 2009 conference, Oct. 23-27, in Seattle. Two-hundred-two cases were evaluated. Cancerous or pre-cancerous cells were found in 12.4 percent of patients. Age was significantly associated with negative pathologic findings. The rate of cancer was 6.2 percent in women 40 years or older and 7.9 percent in women 50 years or older. None of the lesions were identified on pre-operative mammograms. The authors suggest that increased testing in breast reduction patients can help to identify at-risk patients, especially in breast reduction patients over 40.

By the Numbers:

Nearly 90,000 women had breast reduction surgery in 2008, up 5 percent since 2000, reports the ASPS.

Study: "Carcinoma and Aypical Hyperplasia in Reduction Mammaplasty: Increased Sampling Leads to Increased Detection: A Prospective Study" is being presented Sun., Oct. 25, 10:30 -10:35AM PDT, at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center.


Polymer May Allow Soldiers with Artificial Limbs to Feel Heat, Cold, Touch

Embargo for Release: Sunday, October 25, 2009

Current prosthetics may look natural, but they're still primitive - offering patients no real neurological control other than opening or closing their hand. But for U.S. soldiers who have lost arms and hands in the battlefield, two new studies may bring "real" feeling to artificial limbs. Physicians at the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) Plastic Surgery 2009 conference, Oct. 23-27, in Seattle, reveal they have discovered an electrically conducting molecule or polymer (3, 4-ethylenedioxythiophene or PEDOT) that helps stimulate and grow new nerve fibers in severed nerves of amputees. Stimulating and growing nerve fibers are one of the first steps in providing amputees more neurologic control over their prosthetics. The research, conducted through a $5.5 million U.S. Department of Defense grant, may give amputees the ability to move fingers independently, apply the appropriate amount of pressure to objects to better grab and lift something as delicate as Styrofoam cup, and feel sensation.

Study 1: Plastic surgeons may have found a way to successfully grow new nerve fibers, after they've been severed due to injury, through the electrically conducting PEDOT polymer. PEDOT functions similar to a wire. In the study, the PEDOT was placed in a tube, along with other biologic and synthetic materials, and grafted into the severed leg nerve of a rat. New nerve fibers grew and took over function for the dead or dysfunctional severed nerve springing targeted muscles to life.

"Nerve Regeneration through PEDOT, an Electrically Conducting Polymer Nerve Graft" is being presented Sun., Oct. 25, 10:10 -10:15AM PDT, at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center.

Study 2: Plastic surgeons designed a cup containing cells and muscle that fits around the severed leg nerve of a rat. The PEDOT polymer was wrapped around all of the cells and muscle in the cup to provide an electrical charge. Tests were conducted 114 days after the procedure. The study found new muscle and blood vessels formed, nerve fibers sprouted, and muscle fibers started compensating for lost nerves. After tickling the rat's paw, doctors' were able to pick up electrical signals indicating sensation had returned.

"Innervation of a Biosynthetic Living Interface by Severed Peripheral Nerve" is being presented Sat., Oct. 24, 1:00 - 1:05PM PDT, at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center.

By the Numbers:

Nearly 5 million reconstructive plastic surgery procedures were performed in 2008, up 7 percent from 2007, reports the ASPS.


Fat Proves to be Friend of Facial Reconstruction

Embargo for Release: Sunday, October 25, 2009

Fat grafting, the process of taking fat from one area of the body and injecting it into another, has become an increasingly important tool in reconstructive plastic surgery. During a panel discussion at the ASPS Plastic Surgery 2009 conference in Seattle, members of the American Society of Maxillofacial Surgeons will explore the use of fat grafts for improving results in head and neck reconstructive surgery. While research is still unlocking all the mysteries of fat grafting, plastic surgeons know the procedure yields many positive results. Doctors will present case studies where fat grafts were used to enhance function such as reconstructing a patient's lips after adverse reaction to "black-market" silicone injections or the reversal of therapeutic radiation injuries.

By the Numbers:

More than 4.9 million reconstructive plastic surgery procedures were performed in 2008, reports the ASPS.

Panel: "Fat Grafting to Enhance Facial Reconstruction" is being held on Sun., Oct. 25, 9:45-10:45AM PDT, at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center.


Weight Loss Can Shed Pounds and Carpal Tunnel

Embargo for Release: Sunday, October 25, 2009

A new study investigating the relationship between obesity and carpal tunnel suggests that massive weight loss alone may provide a cure for the syndrome. In the study, presented at the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) Plastic Surgery 2009 conference, Oct. 23-27, in Seattle, plastic surgeons analyzed the carpal tunnel histories and pre- and post- weight loss health conditions of 43 massive weight loss patients. More than half of the patients (24) originally reported to have carpal tunnel syndrome while 4 patients reported to have symptoms of carpal tunnel. After weight loss of 50 pounds or more, all but 3 patients reported a resolution of symptoms. Since obesity is associated with an increased prevalence of carpal tunnel syndrome, researchers conclude that weight loss should be advocated to obese patients suffering from this condition.

By the Numbers:

Nearly 38,000 hand surgeries to treat carpal tunnel syndrome were performed in 2008, according to the ASPS.

Study: "Inter-Relationships of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome with Body Mass Indices in the Massive Weight Loss Population" is being presented Sun., Oct. 25, 10:15 - 10:20AM PDT, at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center.

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