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Long-Term Study Looks at What Really Happens to the Face as We Age

May 2, 2013 |

Despite the availability of many cosmetic surgeries and procedures to treat the aging face, there is still little understanding of how the face grows older. A special presentation at the Annual Meeting of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), being held April 11-16, 2013, in New York, NY, will review current results from a study that is documenting the facial aging of plastic surgeons in real-time. “Longitudinal Study of Facial Aging,moderated by James M. Stuzin, MD, will feature Val S. Lambros, MD, who is conducting the study.

“Typically, facial aging has been understood by what we do to improve the look of the face. For example, when all we were doing was pulling on the face using the facelift, it was thought that the face largely aged by descent. Now that we have tools to fill the face, we think of the face as deflating as it ages. But what really happens?” said Dr. Lambros of Newport Beach, CA. “To find out, I began a longitudinal study in 2005, looking at the faces of plastic surgeons as they age. This is the beginning of a study that may last a generation. At the end, we should have a better and more scientific understanding of how the face actually ages.”

For this longitudinal study, which began in 2005, Dr. Lambros has been using a 3-D camera to photograph the faces of plastic surgeons at annual meetings, and then evaluating participants’ age-related facial changes year after year.  In his presentation, Dr. Lambros will review the findings of his study at five to seven years, including the effects of weight gain on facial shape and neck aging, and facial descent or deflation as it relates to facial aging.

“This is the first comprehensive attempt to scientifically document facial aging, and I think it is an extremely interesting and worthwhile effort by Dr. Lambros,” commented Dr. Stuzin of Miami, FL, who will moderate the presentation.

According to ASAPS most recent statistics, in 2012 Americans had 119,006 facelifts, that is an almost 3% increase from 2011.  People age 51-64 had over 60 percent of the facelifts performed last year, and people 65 and over had about 25 percent of the total.

Source:  The ASAPS, April 13, 2013 at

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