New VASER Ultrasound-based Device Debuts

Sound Surgical Technologies LLC this week announced the launch of the new VASER Lipo System today. The new VASER System has been re-engineered to improve the overall experience for physicians and provide even greater versatility for body contouring procedures. The ultrasonic energy has been specifically tuned to “make the technology ideal for fat transfer procedures, while also continuing to improve body sculpting efficiency,” says a company spokesperson.

The new VASER System has been optimized for harvesting fat for subsequent fat transfer procedures.

Constantino Mendieta, MD, a plastic surgeon in Miami, Fla, recently commented, “Everything about VASER technology, from the non-cutting cannula to the energy delivery, promotes a gentler procedure, which in turn boosts fat viability.”

VASER technology has also been clinically proven to enhance skin retraction. In a recent multi-center, clinical study, VASER Lipo treatment demonstrated 53% improvement in skin retraction relative to standard liposuction, according to the company. This is the first study to demonstrate statistically significant and clinically relevant improvements in a new body contouring technology compared to standard liposuction.

“The VASER Lipo System … has revolutionized the way we as surgeons approach fat removal, and how the public perceives it,” states Paul Ruff, MD, FACS, a plastic surgeon practicing in Washington DC.

Source: Sound Surgical Technologies LLC

Covidien Rolls Out New Absorbable Wound Closure Devices for Knotless Tissue Repair

Covidien, Ontario, Calif, recently announced the global launch of the V-Loc 90 device, expanding its family of V-Loc absorbable wound closure devices. This latest addition to Covidien’s knotless wound closure product line received 510(k) clearance from the FDA on May 11, 2010.

The V-Loc 90 device builds on the success of the V-Loc 180 device, launched in October 2009, as the first surgical device of its kind to feature unidirectional barbed technology. The device’s unique and proprietary self-anchoring loop and barb combination enables surgeons to close dermal wounds quickly and securely without tying knots or changing standard closure techniques. Covidien V-Loc devices close wounds up to 50% faster than conventional sutures of comparable holding strength.

The V-Loc 180 device holds the wound edges together securely for the critical wound healing period, with absorption substantially complete within 180 days. The V-Loc 90 device contains faster absorbing material, which is based on Covidien’s Biosyn™ suture technology, and absorption is essentially complete within 90 to 110 days. This makes the new device ideal for dermal and laparoscopic applications where a shorter absorption time is needed or preferred, such as in plastic reconstructive surgery, gynecologic surgery, and general surgery.

Initial clinical testing shows that the use of V-Loc device technology significantly decreases the time needed to close surgical incisions.

The V-Loc 90 device was presented at the European Association of Plastic Surgeons annual meeting in Manchester, England, on May 27 through 29, 2010. It was also previewed at The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery’s annual meeting in Washington, DC, in April 2010.

Source: Longhorn Vaccines and Diagnostics

Survey: What Are the Younger Facial Plastic Surgeons Up To?

A new survey published this month in the journal Archives of Facial Plastic Surgery has gathered information on facial plastic surgeons in practice only a few years. Researchers at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Division of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, created a survey to help understand trends among younger surgeons in practice in the United States.

Seventy-three of 227 surveys were completed (a 32% response rate). Over 86% of those who participated in the survey worked in a metropolitan location versus a rural setting. In terms of practice type, almost half reported working in a private practice. Physicians in an academic practice or in a private practice with an academic affiliation were nearly equal in number (17 and 20, respectively). Also, over 50% reported that at least 91% of their practice was spent performing facial plastic and reconstructive surgery.

Overall, more than 40% of those surveyed earned at least $400,000. When comparing the differences in income between those in practice for 1 year or facial plastic surgeons who dedicate over 90% of their practice to facial plastic surgery with the group overall, researchers found the differences were not statistically significant (P = .22 and P = .73, respectively). Half of the facial plastic surgeons in their first year of practice earned $200,000 to $299,000, and one-third (33.3%) earned at least $400,000. Over half of those who responded as having 91% to 100% of their practice devoted to facial plastic surgery earned at least $400 000. Over 50% of young facial plastic surgeons in private practice and 40% of those in private practice with an academic affiliation reported earning over $400,000.

Approximately one-fifth (20.8%) of surgeons reported performing 51 to 100 procedures, and approximately one-fifth (19.4%) procedures completed over 300 cases. The rest of the group had a near-equal number performing 0 to 50 (11.1%), 101 to 150 (15.3%), 151 to 200 (12.5%), and 201 to 250 (13.9%) procedures overall in the previous 12 months. There was a smaller subset (6.9%) that performed 251 to 300 procedures in the previous 12 months.

The researchers also examined the number of surgical procedures each subgroup reported over the past 12 months and found some interesting results. For instance, of those whose practice was composed of over 90% facial plastic and reconstructive surgery, over 35% had performed more than 300 procedures in the previous 12 months.

Source: Archives of Facial Plastic Surgery

Body Contouring Podcast Series: Looking Into the Future

How do surgeons first become interested in body contouring work, and where do they want to take it in their practices? PSP editor Jeffrey Frentzen explores some of the new technologies being applied to body contouring work from the perspective of three experts in the field of plastic and cosmetic surgery: Steven R. Cohen, MD, FACS, a plastic surgeon practicing in San Diego; Michael S. Kluska, DO, FAACS, FACOS, a cosmetic and reconstructive surgeon in private practice in Greensburg, Pa; and Angelo Cuzalina, MD, a cosmetic surgeon based in Tulsa, Okla.

Go to Body Contouring for more information and to see the podcast menu.