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After the facelift, a ‘handlift’

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Broadcaster Korina Sanchez used to be coy about her hands. But when she showed her engagement ring to the public, her hands looked smooth and youthful.

Celebrities and prominent personalities are turning to hand rejuvenating procedures to combat the creased hands and popping veins. As one matures, the hands lose volume and elasticity.  Because the skin is thinner, it tends to wrinkle over time. The fatty layer of the hand vanishes, to reveal the bones, tendons and veins.

Show of hands

As hands are becoming the new focus after the face in aesthetic science, the “handlift” is a popular treatment at Prettylooks Aesthetic Center. Hands and feet bioplasty is a 45-minute procedure where permanent fillers are injected under the skin to plump it up.  The effects can last for years, says Susan Co-Ong, a pharmacist and president and CEO of Prettylooks.

Aesthetic surgeon Rizalino dela Fuente explains that biodermal plasty restores the collagen content, which gives volume to the hands. “The dermal fillers are placed alongside the veins so the hand becomes plump. These reduce wrinkles and replace the lost subcutaneous fat.”

Dr. Dela Fuente explains that after tests for possible allergic reactions, the hands are cleansed, sterilized and applied with local anesthesia. Fine cannulas are inserted on the back of the hand through the tiny hollow areas. The fillers penetrate through the cannulas to restore the right volume of the hand. Cream is then applied and the hand is massaged to equally distribute the fillers.

Collagen boosters

“The maturation period takes 30-45 days. The fillers can help boost your own collagen and add volume to the hand.  If there are crevices, we add filler. If you gain or lose weight, the hands will look the same. There is no downtime.  You can get your hands wet, play golf and tennis, and work on the computer.”

Dr. Dela Fuente has been administering hand bioplasty for over a decade, working on female and male patients, regardless of age. “There are very few people doing hand bioplasty here. It takes expertise to determine the proper concentration of the fillers and the areas to apply them.”

Celebrities such as Ali Sotto, Connie Angeles, Lindsay Custodio and Bernardo Bernardo have had their hands treated. Prettylooks has even had patients in their 20s whose hands are thin-skinned—result of genetics—and look shriveled even before they are 30.

Male patients want to disguise the bulging veins. “We add the amount to give the hand more volume but not too plump that it makes them look like women’s hands,” says Co.

Contraindications

As with any filler, there are possible complications, such as infection, nodule or granuloma formation (the body’s reaction to foreign bodies by forming hard tissues) and asymmetry.

“Too much fillers make the hands look like a crab shell,” adds Co.

Still, Prettylooks has handled botched jobs, hand rejuvenation procedures performed in other centers. “The patients come for a retouch because some areas of the hands are depressed.  They want a flat and smooth surface. Some have big hands with small bodies. That means the amount of filler was inaccurate.  Some used ordinary fillers that lasted only two months,” says Co.

Dr. Dela Fuente has turned down people with metal implants. He also reevaluates clients if the skin test is negative. “We are conservative and are concerned about the safety of clients,” he says. “I would like to warn people about clinics that are neither reputable nor supervised by doctors. For their own safety, some clinics may have supplies that are not safely used. It is important to go to a clinic whose doctor uses the  approved  dermal fillers.”

Prettylooks is at 201 Grand Emerald Tower, F. Ortigas Jr., Ortigas Center; tel. 6877507, 4702541, 0917-5331828.


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