Electronic Stimulation of Muscles to Fight Wrinkles Giving facial … – Softpedia

When considering the methods available to fight the most troublesome signs of old age, wrinkles and saggy skin, we all know that they are quite limited: either Botox, which freezes the muscles of the face, or fillers that add more volume to the face, making it plumper. However, as of late, a third option has started gaining more ground: electronic stimulation of the facial muscles is supposed to fight wrinkles and other signs of aging, a piece in the Daily Mail reveals.

Electronic stimulation of the muscles is definitely not a new technology, as some of us have probably already used it on parts of our bodies that needed more toning, thanks to home products that work the abs, bums and thighs. However, it’s just now that it’s starting to be used for the face, after research has shown that, by working out the muscles, wrinkles and saggy skin appear later on and are less obvious than without the extra “exercise.”

“Latest research has shown that it’s loss of volume, as much as wrinkles and sagging skin, that contributes towards making us look old – hence the explosion in the number of women opting for plumping fillers. […] Experts believe working the facial muscles regularly can do just that. But while exercising muscles in the body is relatively straightforward, giving facial muscles a good workout is harder. This is where electronic stimulation, or electro-stim, comes in. Essentially, it involves running a micro-current to the facial muscles, which causes them to contract, firming the muscles and consequently making them bigger.” the Daily Mail writes.

Of course, this is a procedure that beauty salons all over the world have been using for years. Still, it’s just now that it’s becoming widely accessible, with home options being released, which means any woman (or man) in need of a good facial electro-stim can do so for a fraction of the cost – and hope that what some doctors say about plumpness and volume being the closest thing to the fountain of youth holds water. In the UK, for instance, Slendertone Face comes out next month at Harrods and women are so hyped about the product, that there is already a waiting list of more than 2,000 customers.

“For [£299] you get what looks like a pair of high-tech headphones and a rechargeable headset system with a hand-held controller. The idea is that the two pads, which transmit electrical current through the skin, sit on either side of the face, in front of the ear. At this point is a specific nerve that has branches to all of the major muscles of the face, treating the whole face in one go.” the Mail writes. Studies say this device, along with the many others like it, works wonders: to determine if this is actually true, all those interested have to get in line and brace themselves for a long waiting.


Who Want A Surgical Face Lift?

Not everyone wants to go for a surgical face lift. However, you can get some of the benefits from non-surgical options, if you know the right one to choose. A face lift isn’t something everyone would choose, but there are some ways around that, to get rid of bags and wrinkles without a surgical face lift. Let’s have a look now at some of your choices.

In recent years, the technology has advanced so far that many procedures which were unthinkable then are now actually quite common. There are laser or micro-current face lifts or Thermage (R) skin tightening, which are just some types of non-surgical face lift which have become available in the last few years. They can be really effective and all are non-invasive procedures with few or no side-effects.

People of both sexes are opting for Thermage (R). This non-invasive anti-aging procedure is very effective and what is also great is that it is within the reach of most people’s pockets too. Thermage (R) encourages the development of collagen in the skin by applying heat to certain areas. Each treatment lasts approximately an hour and has few side-effects. The side-effects you do have will probably only last a few days.

Microcurrent Face Lift

A microcurrent face lift is otherwise known as a bio-ultimate face lift. It is a very effective non-surgical face lift using slight electrical currents. It is a treatment which people usually find quite affordable. The electrical current triggers cellular changes, reducing wrinkles and fine lines, as well as reducing the adverse effects that the sun has on skin. It will also improve skin tone. The microcurrent face lift is scientifically proven to significantly reduce the signs of aging.

Laser Face Lift

The laser face lift is non-invasive, involving neither anesthesia nor incisions. The laser face lift resurfaces the skin, tightening the outer layers of skin so wrinkles and fine lines are reduced. There should not be any scarring. You may experience some discoloration immediately after the laser face lift but that should not last long. It is a highly effective anti-aging which can be quite easily affordable too.

Wrinkle Creams

Don’t be fooled into thinking that a good wrinkle cream has to cost you the earth. You can find a great wrinkle cream without breaking the bank and that is especially good news to those people who, because of thin or sensitive skin, would not be eligible for other anti-aging skin treatments.

There are also face lift creams, which contain amino acids such as alpha hydroxy acid and acetyl hexapeptide. These help to tighten up the skin and minimize wrinkles and fine lines.

You should ensure that any wrinkle cream you select carries a money-back guarantee. The first wrinkle cream you try may not work for you so you don’t want to lose out financially on it, do you? Also remember that with wrinkle creams, more expensive does not necessarily mean better. The choice of wrinkle cream is a personal thing.


OK, I’m not going to tell you again that ‘you are what you eat’. Oh wait, I just told you. Oh, well, it’s true anyway. If you eat well it will help you achieve healthy skin that will enable you to look years younger. Many anti-aging diets are now marketed, such as the raw food diet, the Okinawan diet, and the GI diet.

However, you don’t need to choose a specific diet. You can just choose to include plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables into your diet. These are full of antioxidants, which help to keep you looking young. Also, you should make sure that you drink enough water which will also help to keep your skin healthier and looking younger. Antioxidants help your body to detoxify and get rid of free radicals which age you prematurely. Also, water hydrates your skin so it is plumped up, making wrinkles and fine lines look less obvious.

So, if you feel a surgical face lift is not for you, you have several other options open to you. Now you’re equipped with that knowledge of the most effective alternatives to face lifts, you can make the right decision on your own anti-aging option.

Turn back the clock on your skin’s appearance with the anti aging wrinkle serum cream works! Which one delivers the results? See this review page by Marcus Ryan for reviews of ultimate face lift beauty tips that work, including this review of the Athena lift cream that works in just 7 minutes to have you look 10 years younger.

Microcurrent Stimulation for Macular Degeneration

Microcurrent stimulation is a technique to apply electrical stimulation to nerve fibers using cutaneous electrodes. Microcurrent stimulation of the macula has been used to treat patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD), utilizing currents on the order of 50 to 500 microamperes. This procedure is also known as transcutaneous electrical stimulation of the macula (TESMAC). A primary purpose of electrical stimulation, using higher millicurrents as in transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) treatment, has been to relieve pain. It has also been reported in use for increasing circulation, promoting closure of bone fractures and improving wound healing.


The Task Force on Complementary Therapies believes that, based on available evidence in the peer-reviewed literature, strong scientific evidence has not been found to demonstrate the effectiveness of microcurrent stimulation for AMD. Long-term studies with larger samples of patients, well-described patient selection criteria, adequate control groups, and standardized follow-up and outcome measures are critical to establishing a base of evidence regarding effectiveness.


There are two uncontrolled studies published in a non-peer reviewed journal comprising 71 patients with AMD, who were treated with both nutritional supplements and electrical stimulation and one uncontrolled study published in a non-peer reviewed journal of 43 patients with macular degeneration treated only with electrical stimulation. The studies reported that some patients had improved visual acuity after treatment.


Overall, the rate of adverse effects from microcurrent stimulation or TENS is reported as low. Adverse incidents are related to electrode placement. There may be a significant financial risk associated with the costs of these treatments over a long period of time.


Physicians can advise their patients contemplating microcurrent stimulation for AMD to ask the following questions of their provider:

  • Is the treatment being provided as part of an FDA-authorized study?
  • What are the results and benefits compared to a control group (a group not receiving microcurrent stimulation)?
  • What other treatment options are available and how do they compare?
  • Is lifelong treatment with microcurrent stimulation necessary to maintain benefits?



Microcurrent stimulation is a technique to apply electrical stimulation to nerve fibers using cutaneous electrodes. Microcurrent stimulation for macular degeneration is described as applying 200 microamperes of electricity from a nine-volt battery to eight points around the eye. This technique utilizes lower currents, on the order of 50 to 500 microamperes. The device controller provides the microcurrent using two different waveforms and four frequencies.

In comparison, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) is a technique to apply millicurrents to nerve fibers using cutaneous electrodes. Short pulses of electrical current last from 9 to 350 microseconds, and are applied at frequencies of 0.3 to 294 MHz. The device controls provide for adjustment in the pulse parameters. The primary application of TENS in health care has been to relieve pain. Other reported uses include increasing circulation, enhancing closure of bone fractures, and improving wound healing.


For age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the postulated mechanism is that microcurrent stimulation improves membrane permeability, nerve conduction velocity, protein synthesis, and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) levels. In a very small experimental study (n= 9), microcurrent stimulation was shown to increase microcirculatory blood flow in intact skin and blister wounds, as measured by red blood cell velocity.[1] In an animal study, direct electric currents were shown to increase ATP concentrations in tissues and stimulate amino acid transport into rat skin.[2]


Microcurrent stimulation of the macula has been proposed as treatment for patients with AMD. Age-related macular degeneration is the leading cause of irreversible severe central visual loss in Caucasian Americans 50 years and older. Typically, patients who progress to the neovascular form of the disease or have geographic atrophy involving the foveal center tend to develop severe vision loss. Laser photocoagulation, photodynamic therapy with verteporfin, and specific nutritional supplements are treatments that have demonstrated efficacy in randomized controlled trials for certain stages of AMD.


Although it has been reported by VisionWorks, Inc. (New Paltz, NY) that the Macular Degeneration Foundation plans to propose an industry-sponsored double-masked, randomized and multisite clinical trial for microcurrent stimulation of the macula for submittal to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), this is not confirmed by the Macular Degeneration Foundation website.

Microcurrent stimulation devices currently marketed in the U.S. do not have FDA premarket approval for the indication of macular degeneration. At this time, any research studies in the U.S. using microcurrent stimulation for macular degeneration require FDA authorization and Institutional Review Board approval.[3]


Search Methods and Study Selection

In August 2000, the Academy searched through MEDLINE and EMBASE in the English language from January 1970 to August 2000 for articles relating to TENS, microcurrent stimulation, and ocular conditions. No articles were identified, but a bibliographic search of related articles identified one study for the application of electrical stimulation in patients with AMD.[4] This article was found in a non-peer reviewed journal.

To update the assessment, in March 2004 a search of MEDLINE and EMBASE was conducted for the period January 1968 through February 2004, with the same search strategy. No new citations were identified. Using the author names from the paper identified earlier, an Internet search using the Google search engine, located another paper in a non-peer reviewed journal.[5] The Internet search found a web site (www.mdsupport.org) which contained a discussion of microcurrent stimulation. Through this source an additional paper was identified.[6]

Statistical Issues and Study Design

Two studies found were case series, one with 25 patients[4] and the other with 46 patients.[5] The treatment in both studies was microcurrent stimulation and nutritional supplements. Another case series was of 43 patients treated with microcurrent stimulation. These studies have the following limitations: small study population, no control population, lack of detailed documentation on patient selection and patients who declined treatment, and lack of standardized outcome measures other than visual acuity. The two studies of microcurrent stimulation and nutritional supplements also have the limitation of insufficient methodology to distinguish between the results of antioxidant supplementation and microcurrent stimulation.

Information about the effect of an intervention should be obtained by comparing a treated group with an untreated control group similar in all the important respects. One way to assure similarity between the two groups is to use randomization. Because case series have no control group and do not use randomization, there is no way to estimate how an intervention might have changed an outcome. In addition, case series usually describe a small number of patients. Small sample sizes can lead to patient-selection bias as well as a higher likelihood that the observed effect was a result of chance. Properly documented case series can provide important insights into the potential utility of a new treatment and be valuable for those designing appropriate controlled clinical trials. Necessary documentation includes details about the patient selection criteria, the number of patients who declined surgery, and how the enrolled patients compared to the patients who refused treatment. Use of standardized follow-up intervals and outcomes assessment would further improve the quality of information, as would comparisons to the natural history of the remaining, untreated patient population. There should be appropriate study controls, such as using sham microcurrent stimulation treatment or using the fellow eye as a control.


The proposed benefits are that visual acuity is improved. In order to maintain the effects, microcurrent stimulation therapy is presumed to be ongoing or lifelong, although maintenance intervals are proposed to be less frequent than the initial treatment phase.

One study of 25 patients with AMD, aged 48 to 79 years, reported the results of both nutritional supplementation and electrical stimulation.[4] Patients were treated for varying intervals, from 2 years to 7 years with a daily multivitamin and mineral supplement, and a monthly administration of electrical treatment of 200 microamperes on the closed eyelid for 7 minutes for each eye. There was no control population for comparison purposes.

The study reported the following results: 15 patients improved their visual acuity, and 10 patients had reduced acuity. The overall group lost an average of 0.30 letters of visual acuity over an average treatment period of 4.0 years.[4]

A second paper reported on two series of patients.[5] One series of 12 patients with AMD, aged 60 to 89 years, were followed for up to 6 years and treated with nutritional supplements and microcurrent stimulation once a week for 6 weeks. The second series of 34 patients with AMD, aged 61 to 87 years, were followed for up to 6 years and treated with nutritional supplements and microcurrent stimulation several times a week. There was no control population in either series for comparison purposes. The machines used delivered 200 microamperes at ±9 volts of alternating, square wave current. The series of 12 patients showed an average loss of 3 letters of visual acuity over a 2-year period. The series of 34 patients had an average gain of 8.5 letters of acuity per eye.[5]

A third paper reported on a series of 43 patients (65 eyes) with macular degeneration treated with direct microcurrent of 200 microamperes for 20 minutes for 36 sessions.[6] The treatment was applied for 10 minutes per eye three to four times a week. No details of patients’ ages or length of time of follow up was given. Thirty-five of 65 eyes (54%) had a 1 to 4 line improvement in visual acuity, 35% had no improvement, and 8% had a decline.


The overall rate of adverse effects from electrical stimulation appears to be low. In the studies of AMD and microcurrent stimulation, there were no reported adverse effects from the electrical stimulation. Adverse effects could include: electrical burns if electrodes are not coupled to conductive gel, dermatitis, and skin irritation at the electrode sites with repeated application. Some materials reviewed during the Internet search indicate that patients may self-apply the electrical stimulation, in which case there may be risks of incorrect application. There may also be risks if the current applied is higher than what has been studied. There may be a significant financial risk associated with the costs of these treatments over a long period of time.


  • What is the biological basis for microcurrent stimulation for treating AMD?
  • Does microcurrent stimulation reduce visual loss caused by AMD, using randomized controlled clinical trials in larger, well-designed studies with adequate statistical analyses, standardized outcome measures and sufficient follow-up intervals?
  • How effective is microcurrent stimulation compared to standard therapies for AMD, i.e., laser surgery and photodynamic therapy?


Physicians can advise their patients contemplating microcurrent stimulation for AMD to ask the following questions of their provider:

  • Is the treatment being provided as part of an FDA-authorized study?
  • What are the results and benefits compared to a control group (a group not receiving microcurrent stimulation)?
  • What other treatment options are available and how do they compare?
  • Is lifelong treatment with microcurrent stimulation necessary to maintain benefits?


Based on available evidence in the peer-reviewed scientific literature, the Task Force on Complementary Therapies believes that strong scientific evidence has not been found to demonstrate the effectiveness of microcurrent stimulation treatment of AMD compared to standard therapies. Long-term studies with larger samples of patients, well-described patient selection criteria, adequate control groups, and standardized follow-up and outcome measures are critical to establishing a base of evidence regarding effectiveness.


Complementary, or alternative therapies, are a growing part of health care in America. Americans spend an estimated $14 billion a year on alternative treatments. Mainstream medicine is recognizing a need to learn more about alternative therapies and determine their true value. Most medical schools in the United States offer courses in alternative therapies. The editors of the Journal of the American Medical Association announced that publishing research on alternative therapies will be one of its priorities. The National Institutes of Health National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine has broadly defined complementary and alternative medicine as those treatments and health care practices not taught widely in medical schools, not generally used in hospitals, and not usually reimbursed by medical insurance companies. More scrutiny and scientific objectivity is being applied to determine whether evidence supporting their effectiveness exists.

In the fall of 1998, the Board of Trustees appointed a Task Force on Complementary Therapy to evaluate complementary therapies in eye care and develop an opinion on their safety and effectiveness, based on available scientific evidence, in order to inform ophthalmologists and their patients. A scientifically grounded analysis of the data will help ophthalmologists and patients evaluate the research and thus make more rational decisions on appropriate treatment choices.

The Academy believes that complementary therapies should be evaluated similarly to traditional medicine: evidence of safety, efficacy, and effectiveness should be demonstrated.[7,8] Many therapies used in conventional medical practice also have not been as rigorously tested as they should be. Given the large numbers of patients affected and the health care expenditures involved it is important that data and scientific information be used to base all treatment recommendations. In this way, we can encourage high-quality, rigorous research on complementary therapies.[9-11]

Ideally, a study of efficacy compares a treatment to a placebo or another treatment, using a double-masked controlled trial and well-defined protocol. Reports should describe enrollment procedures, eligibility criteria, clinical characteristics of the patients, methods for diagnosis, randomization method, definition of treatment, control conditions, and length of treatment. They should also use standardized outcomes and appropriate statistical analyses.

The goal of these assessments is to provide objective information of complementary therapies and provide a scientific basis for physicians to advise their patients, when asked.

To accomplish these goals, the assessments, in general, are intended to do the following:

  • Describe the scientific rationale or mechanism for action for the complementary therapy.
  • Describe the methods and basis for collecting evidence.
  • Describe the relevant evidence.
  • Summarize the benefits and risks of the complementary therapy.
  • Pose questions for future research inquiry.
  • Summarize the evidence on safety and effectiveness.


  1. Wikstrom SO, Svedman P, Svensson H, Tanweer AS. Effect of transcutaneous nerve stimulation on microcirculation in intact skin and blister wounds in healthy volunteers. Scand J Plast Reconstr Surg Hand Surg 1999; 33:195-201.
  2. Cheng N, Van Hoof H, Bock E et al. The effects of electric currents on ATP generation, protein synthesis and membrane transport in rat skin. Clinical Orthopedics and Related Research 1982: 71:264-71.
  3. Rosenthal AR. FDA Position on Microcurrent Stimulation. Letter to the Editor. EyeNet Magazine 2004;1:8.
  4. Michael LD, Allen MJ. Nutritional supplementation, electrical stimulation and age-related macular degeneration. J of Orthomolecular Medicine 1993; 8:168-71.
  5. Allen MJ, Jarding JB, Zehner R. Macular degeneration treatment with nutrients and micro current electricity. J of Orthomolecular Medicine 1998;13:211-14.
  6. Wallace L. The treatment of macular degeneration and other retinal diseases using bioelectromagnetics therapy. J of Optometric Phototherapy March 1997;4-5.
  7. Fontanarosa PB, Lundberg GD. Alternative medicine meets science (editorial). JAMA 1998; 280: 1618-19.
  8. DeAngelis CD, Fontanarosa PB. Drugs alias dietary supplements. JAMA 2003;290:1519-20.
  9. Marcus DM, Grollman AP. Botanical medicines–the need for new regulations. N Engl J Med 2002;347:2073-6.
  10. Margolin A, Avants SK, Kleber HD. Investigating alternative medicine therapies in randomized controlled trials (editorial). JAMA 1998; 280:1626-8.
  11. Miller FG, Emanuel EJ, Rosenstein, DL, Straus SE. Ethical issues concerning research in complementary and alternative medicine. JAMA 2004;291:599-604.

Prepared by the American Academy of Ophthalmology Complementary Therapy Task Force

  • Ivan R. Schwab, MD, Chair William F. Mieler, MD
  • Roger Husted, MD Sayoko E. Moroi, MD, PhD
  • Jeffrey Todd Liegner, MD Denise Satterfield, MD
  • Harold P. Koller, MD Peter R. Holyk, MD, Consultant

Academy Staff:

  • Flora C. Lum, MD
  • Nancy Collins, RN, MPH

Approved by the Quality of Care Secretariat September 15, 2000

Approved by the Quality of Care and Knowledge Base Development Secretariat March 31, 2004

Copyright © 2000, 2004

American Academy of Ophthalmology

All rights reserved.

Medical Breakthroughs That Could Change Your Life

HOUSTON, TX – Medical Headway, LLC (Medical Headway), an online medical breakthrough library, has a simple yet potentially life-saving goal. And that is to make the latest medical breakthrough news available and easily accessible to all consumers — without cost.

Medical breakthroughs have improved and saved the lives of millions. And leading edge advances in medicine reported on MedicalHeadway.com are doing just that today. The fact is, we all benefit from credible, professional medical advances that improve or sustain our health and the health of our loved ones. Medical professionals provide care and guidance. But when things get tough and options appear limited, most of us want to find a way to regain some control. You’re not alone if you choose to do that by supplementing your medical professional’s advice — through reading and learning as much as you can about your condition. You want to understand your situation better, and you want to be alert for anything on the forefront that promises a better outcome. It’s clear to you that medical knowledge is advancing every minute of every day — and Medical Headway is here to help report medical breakthroughs as they happen.

One common but frightening diagnosis women face is breast cancer. Moreover, because breast cancer runs in some families, the threat hangs over some women for decades. And statistics confirm the fear is justified. According to American Cancer Society (ACS) reports, the U.S. breast cancer rate — with respect to newly diagnosed cases — will skyrocket from 78,480 in 2007 to 182,460 in 2008. The ACS expects the breast cancer death rate to remain virtually constant, with a continued upward trend. They predict 20 more women will die from breast cancer in 2008 than the previous year, reaching 40,480 deaths.

If you or someone in your family or circle of friends is living with a genetic predisposition to breast cancer, you’ll want to read and share these exciting medical breakthrough reports available to you now at MedicalHeadway.com — from researchers at renowned institutions:


--  Researchers Decoding Saliva's Secrets to Detect Breast Cancer -- from
    researchers at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston.
    Studies confirm that specific protein markers in human saliva can provide
    an early, non-invasive diagnosis of breast cancer.

--  DNA Test Improves Breast Cancer Treatment -- from Genelex, an
    accredited DNA Testing Pioneer. Their test identifies patients at risk for
    failure under Tamoxifen, ensuring precious treatment time is not lost using
    an ineffective protocol.

--  Supplemental Breast Ultrasound Boosts Cancer Detection -- from the
    University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas. This report
    confirms that for women at high risk of developing breast cancer, breast
    ultrasound combined with mammography may detect more cancers than
    mammography alone. This report confirms that for women at high risk of
    developing breast cancer, breast ultrasound combined with mammography may
    detect more cancers than mammography alone.

--  Optimal Boost™ Approach to Breast Cancer Treatment -- from IntraOp
    Medical, the world leader in intraoperative electron-beam radiation
    treatment. In this treatment, a device applies a high dosage of radiation
    to the tumor bed at the time of the lumpectomy, followed by traditional
    post-operative radiation therapy. Benefits include increased survival
    rates, better local tumor control, shorter treatment cycles, and fewer side

Did you know that over 21 million American adults suffer from depression, and, of those, 4 million live with deep depression? Medical Headway is proud to spotlight a breakthrough that addresses a condition which affects millions.


--  Deep Brain Stimulation Study Offers Hope for Severe Depression -- from
    St. Jude Medical, Inc. The first multi-center study investigating deep
    brain stimulation (DBS) for major depressive disorder of a specific area of
    the brain reveals positive results. Researchers hope the study results lead
    to therapy that will help those patients who do not respond to medications,
    psychotherapy and, in some cases, electroconvulsive therapy.

Pain — whether chronic and disabling from physical or neurological conditions, stemming from a sports-related injury or resulting from surgery — compromises the quality of life and impedes the healing process for over 90 million sufferers in the U.S. and 1 in 5 people in Europe. Leading edge breakthroughs noted in these reports address the serious problem:


--  ActiPatch™ is the New Way of Medicine -- from Bioelectronics
    Corporation, the maker of ActiPatch™, a drug-free anti-inflammatory
    patch recommended for sports injuries, plastic surgery recovery and a
    variety of chronic pain issues. ActiPatch is a wafer-thin patch with a
    microcurrent that has been shown to reduce pain and swelling and accelerate
    healing with no side effects. Cleared by the FDA for treatment of swelling
    stemming from cosmetic eyelid surgery, physicians are so impressed with the
    ActiPatch that they are recommending it for surgical recovery; sports
    injuries; and a complete assortment of aches, pains and soft tissue

--  Long-Life Neurostimulator Treats Chronic Pain -- from Advanced
    Neuromodulation Systems, Inc., a St. Jude Medical Company. The world's
    smallest, longest-lasting rechargeable neurostimulator treats chronic pain
    of the trunk or limbs and pain from failed back surgery and has earned the
    European CE Mark as well as approval from the U.S. Food and Drug
    Administration (FDA). The device is similar in function and appearance to
    cardiac pacemakers, delivering mild electrical pulses to the spinal cord
    which interrupt or mask pain signals to the brain.

Uncontrolled bleeding is a major issue for physicians treating acute, traumatic wounds. Medical Headway is pleased to share news about a product originally developed for the military that is now available to first responders and private consumers.


--  Z-Medica Corp. Launches Two Rapid Hemostatic Products for Consumers --
    Including First Antimicrobial Formulation -- from Z-Medica, a medical
    products company focused on innovative hemostatic, better known as "blood-
    clotting," nano-technologies. While the concept of the original QuikClot®
    product was to quickly stop traumatic arterial & venous bleeding in combat
    and tactical situations, the new consumer product line -- including
    QuikClot® Sport™ & QuikClot® Sport Silver™ (antimicrobial) --
    uses similar technology to provide acute bleeding first-aid in a variety of
    consumer settings: sport/outdoor adventure; work; home; school; or car.
    These products are all based on innovative, lifesaving hemostatic nano-
    technologies. They consist of "clotting sponges" that are inserted directly
    into a bleeding wound. Small and light enough to fit within any first aid
    kit, the product has 510k clearance from the FDA. The products are easily
    applied by anyone who can tear open a packet and follow simple written

Finally, thanks to one medical research center, there is hope for children born with misshapen skulls, or plagiocephaly. See the report briefly described below:


--  STAR Cranial Centers of Excellence Offer Cutting-Edge Treatment to
    Children -- from STAR Cranial Center of Excellence, with locations in
    Columbia, MD and Dallas, TX. Treatment for children born with deformational
    plagiocephaly -- or misshapen skulls -- is most effective if begun at 4 to
    6 months of age. Some physicians believe that lack of treatment can lead to
    developmental delays, visual impairment and misaligned ears, eyes and jaw.
    The STARscanner is a system that scans a child's head -- before, during and
    after treatment in under 2 seconds -- providing the precise measurements
    needed to fabricate the custom STARband cranial helmet and monitor
    treatment progress. The STARband is the most prescribed cranial remolding
    orthosis in the world, with over 50,000 babies benefiting from STARband
    treatment since 2001. The STARband helmets are modified approximately every
    two weeks to accomodate growth.

Microcurrent Facial Toning – What is it & How Does it Work?

As “baby boomers” age, more advancements are being made in anti-aging products to meet their needs. Electronic facial machines, which are designed to tighten and tone sagging facial muscles, are no exception.

The latest facial toning machines use “microcurrent” technology and are one of the hottest things in the anti-aging industry right now. There’s a good reason that these machines are so popular. Using microcurrent impulses, they give almost instant, visible results to tighten, tone, and firm aging skin. In fact, the results from microcurrent facial toning are so dramatic that they are often referred to as “non surgical face lifts”.

Just how does microcurrent facial toning work? To understand that, we first need to understand what causes our facial skin to wrinkle and sag. As we age, our muscles become accustomed to certain expressions and tend to “stick” in these positions. A great example of this is the furrow between the eyebrows that many people get. At the same time, other muscles in our face are hardly ever used, and they begin to atrophy, which leads to sagging. An example of this can often be seen around our jaw lines, chins and necks where we tend to develop sagging or loss of definition as we get older.

Microcurrent facial toning machines sends safe, painless impulses to the muscles in your face that help overly-tightened muscles to relax and helps under worked muscles to regain strength. In essence, microcurrent facial toning “re-educates” the facial muscles and restores them back almost to their original shape.

When this happens the visible results are quite dramatic and the face is lifted, firmed and toned back to a much more youthful appearance. At the same time, the microcurrents improve circulation to your face which stimulates production of collagen, improves tone and texture, and improves or eliminates fine lines.

Besides the fact that it really works, one of the things that makes microcurrent facial toning so popular is that most people see visible results after just a single treatment. This gives “instant gratification” which is seen so rarely as a result of other anti-aging products or techniques. In fact, the results are so noticeable that if you only treat half your face one time you can see a visible difference between the half you treated and the half you didn’t.

Microcurrent facial toning is cumulative as well, which means that the more treatments you have, the more improvement you will see in your face. The treatments are rather expensive, at an average cost of $110/treatment. Most people get at least 7-12 treatments to get their desired results.

Although microcurrent facial toning is the current “buzzword” in anti-aging, the technology is not new. It has over 50 years of historical data and clinical trials that back up its anti-aging benefits. That’s great piece of mind that shows not only will it work, but also that it is safe and does not have long term side effects.

Microcurrent facial toning is a great alternative to getting a face lift since it is non-invasive, does not require any recovery time, gives instant results, and does not have the same potential for harmful complications as surgery does.

by: Beth Larson

Boom & bust, Microcurrent treatment

The economy may be in meltdown, but a girl still has to look her best — whatever the cost. Anna Coogan on 10 of the latest treatments to help enhance your cleavage

By Anna Coogan

Research — it’s all about researching whatever procedure you’re going to have, breast or otherwise,” says Ailish Carthy, managing director of Cosmedico Cosmetic Surgery Clinic in Wicklow, about new boob-boosting treatments.

“We’ve had lots of queries about Macrolane filler for breasts and thought about introducing it, but then two girls came in looking for breast augmentation — one was going to audition for a girlband — and both had already had the filler, and we saw the results,” says Ailish.


Boob jobs are not going away, if anything they’re becoming more popular, with Sex and The City writer Candace Bushnell writing about 18-year-old American girls getting bigger boobs for their birthdays in her new novel One Fifth Avenue, and celebrating with pool parties to show off their new physiques.

So breast surgery is a rite of passage for American teenagers, and we know whatever happens Stateside eventually infiltrates Dublin youth culture.


Just like it’s teenagers and young women who make up most custom in salons looking for Brazilian and French waxes before hitting the beach and nightclubs.

Unfortunately, young women are the worst for researching cosmetic procedures, often getting carried away on the promise of a quick fix.


“I’m not saying Macrolane doesn’t work for some women, but I haven’t been impressed with what I’ve seen. I could see the filler in the breasts, and the girls couldn’t have breast augmentation for 18 months afterwards,” says clinic boss Ailish.


Here’s a round-up of the latest bust-boosting treatments — because cleavage is in this winter and you may feel you need help to do it as best you can.


Just don’t forget to research your surgeon or doctor and procedure before signing on the dotted line. After all, if celebrities can get it wrong — and celebrities who’ve been accused of bad boob jobs include Courtney Love, Tori Spelling, Tara Reid, Pamela Anderson and Christina Aguilera — then anyone on an average budget has to be extra careful. Remember, you want your curves to resemble those of Holly Willoughby or Kelly Brook, and not Victoria Beckham.


This is an injectable filler containing hyaluronic acid and is injected deep into the breasts with a thick needle resembling a knitting needle. It aims to give breasts a round and full look, and involves the use of local anaesthetic. The entire procedure takes about 30 minutes and it is temporary — patients are recommended to go in for treatment once a year or every 18 months.


There was a big fuss about this procedure last spring when American surgeons began introducing it in clinics. Botox is traditionally used to smooth out facial lines, but the Botox boob job involves injections into the pectoral muscles which subsequently raises the back and improves posture, and as a result boobs are lifted. Just like the face, the effects wear off, making top-ups necessary.


Transfer of fat from either your tummy or bottom to fill out your breasts. Doctors have experimented with augmenting breasts with fat before, the Wall Street Journal reports, but previous tests led to “hard lumps or calcifications” because the fat “died” once it was grafted. The new fat put into breast tissue is sent to a lab prior to insertion, so that the stem cells within can be fortified. This process is all the rage in Asia.

The Gold Thread Lift procedure is a form of thread lift surgery designed to lift the sagging underlying tissues of the cheek and jaw line by threading a web of gold into your skin and deeper soft tissues. Now it’s being used to plump out cleavage creases by stimulating collagen production in the skin. Considered best for sun worshippers with a damaged decolletage, and not recommended for women over 45.


Combines micro-current therapy and deeply penetrating skin care. This treatment uses both a faradic (intermittent) and galvanic (constant) micro-currents to stimulate muscle fibres, which achieves a toning effect and improves surface skin texture. Combined with intensive muscle-toning formulations, skin is toned and the texture smoothed. Fans say it restores elasticity to breast skin. Sadie Frost is said to be a fan.

The Caci Bust treatment aims to lift, tone and strengthen muscles around the bust area, and is another alternative to a breast lift implant. The bust is massaged with cotton-tipped probes, which deliver tiny micro-impulses to firm the underlying tissue and fill out the breast. Viewed as a good choice for women who want to eliminate the concave look that may occur after breastfeeding or weight loss.


The Brava Breast Enhancement System is a clunky-looking bra which aims to increase your breast size by a whole cup size, and has found a market among women who want to ditch the chicken fillets without undergoing the knife. The bra uses vacuum pressure to expand breast tissue, and should be worn every night for about 10 weeks to achieve an increase in breast size.


The ingredients in herbal pills which claim to increase breast size are mostly extracts from rye, wheat, malt, barley, hops, oats and maize, which are all rich in plant hormones called phytoestrogens — oestrogen-like (the female hormone) chemicals. These are said to stimulate breast tissue growth in the same way that oestrogen does at puberty and in pregnancy. They are claimed to be over 80pc effective. The tablets must be taken for about three months to increase breast size by one cup.


Claims to eradicate wrinkles/crepey skin from the cleavage to give a younger appearance. Lasers create a pattern of microscopic wounds which trigger the body’s natural healing process and stimulate collagen for a fresher skin tone.


Plant extracts are reportedly pressure-injected deep into skin using a high-tech oxygen wand. Natural plant hormones stimulate growth in delicate breast tissue, firming sagging skin.


Microcurrent helps Eagles’ offense get back in the game

PHILADELPHIA — What if the Eagles held a practice and only half the offense showed up?

Despite the optimism voiced by quarterback Donovan McNabb and running back Brian Westbrook, that’s the predicament head coach Andy Reid is facing all week, leading up to a Sunday night game in Chicago.

Five of the Eagles’ 11 offensive starters did not practice on Wednesday, and another — wide receiver Kevin Curtis — was working with the scout team and is a long shot to play this week.

“It’s a challenge for the guys who are hurt. It’s a challenge for the guys who may have an opportunity to step in, if we’re not able to go,” said McNabb, who sat out of practice Wednesday with the chest contusion he suffered during the first half of a 15-6 victory over the Steelers last Sunday. “You never expect to have this many guys banged up at this particular time.”

Reid would probably forfeit Curtis, tight end L.J. Smith, fullback Tony Hunt and even Pro Bowl right guard Shawn Andrews if it meant he’d have McNabb and running back Brian Westbrook fully healthy in time to play the Bears.

Both essential cogs expressed hope that their recoveries would be quick enough that they’d take Soldier Field Sunday night.

Asked if he’s given any thought to sitting this one out, McNabb replied, “No. There’s not a chance in my head. I expect to be out there.”

Westbrook was more equivocal. The Pro Bowl back sprained his right ankle on the first play of the second quarter against Pittsburgh and left Lincoln Financial Field on crutches.

“I’m optimistic about getting out there and being able to play (against the Bears),” he said Wednesday. “I’ve been rehabbing pretty hard, pretty aggressively. I’m doing basically everything I can to be able to get out there on the field on Sunday night.”

Westbrook said the lack of physical repetitions in preparation is not a significant obstacle to success in the game.

“I know the system pretty well, and I study in the classroom as well as at home,” he said. “I talk to the coaches and go over the different schemes that they have, the different ideas that they have seen from the defenses, and just go out there and play ball.”

Westbrook said his rehab regimen has him in the trainer’s room for as long as three hours a day, and it includes stretching and a “microcurrent” machine.

He also said he’s been spending three hours a day in his own personal hyperbaric chamber, compared to his usual hour.

If he were doubtful for the Bears game, the Eagles would almost certainly not tell anyone, since Reid doesn’t want to make anything easier for Chicago. Incidentally, Westbrook suffered a minor injury — an MCL sprain — in Week 3 last year, and Philadelphia milked that decision process all the way to the Meadowlands before finally opting to sit him against the Giants.

Reid is playing his hand close to the vest again.

“It will be a race,” he said. “But we will see how he does here in these next couple of days.”

Top Five Hottest Holiday Beauty Quick Fixes

Gioventu Skin & Body Spa Reveals the Most Advanced Anti-Aging Treatments

Last update: 11:05 a.m. EDT Oct. 7, 2008
SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif., Oct 07, 2008 (BUSINESS WIRE) — With the holidays just around the corner, many Americans will begin looking for a quick-fix “fountain of youth” in an injection or operation, in order to look their best for holiday get-togethers. Gioventu Skin and Body Spa recommends a more holistic route, revealing alternative therapies that rely on a unique convergence of advanced technology and potent ingredients designed to reverse the signs of aging, naturally.
Five Best Anti-Aging Treatments of the Season
“New advances in skincare combine highly efficacious ingredients with fast-acting, results-driven technology,” says Vicky Rivera, co-owner of Gioventu Skin and Body Spa. “The hottest treatments allow women to look instantly more youthful, just in time for the holiday season.”
  1. Botox in a Bottle. The new vegetable-based EWR Complex creates immediate anti-aging results in minutes. With a formula of 93 percent active ingredients, rapid and sustained results are hailed as better than Botox or StriVectin-HS.
  2. Liposome Collagen Treatments Defy Fine Lines. Age-defying liposome collagen treatments reduce the appearance of wrinkles by minimizing muscle contractions around the eyes and lips. Utilizing a low level of electricity known as microcurrent, tiny electric impulses trigger chemical reactions at a cellular level to enhance the production of collagen and elastin. This treatment firms and tones, effectively improving puffiness, dark circles, expression lines and wrinkles.
  3. Instant Non Surgical Facelift. This painless, non-surgical, non-invasive facelift conducted with nanotechnology creates instant firming, plumping and uplifting results.
  4. Ultrasonic Exfoliation. New hand-held technology achieves ultrasonic peeling and exfoliation at high speeds of up to 20,000 Hz oscillations per second. A complete facial make-over is achieved in less than 10 minutes.
  5. Look 10 Years Younger in 10 Days. Clinicians can now sculpt and contour the face and body through non-surgical muscle re-education. Utilizing a technology called Polychromatic Infrared Light, this new treatment increases cellular activity, revitalizing and regenerating skin without downtime.
SOURCE: Gioventu Skin & Body Spa

The body beautiful

Girls on a hip slimming machine
Gadget queens: the Bluebell girls show off a ‘high-tech’ hip slimming machine in Paris

Your guide to make-up and more by Lesley Thomas. This week: Bond-style gadgets

Though I am barely capable of getting a BlackBerry or laptop to do its job properly, I am a sucker for any sort of futuristic beauty tool. Indeed, one of my most vivid memories is of my mother and her friends on an “exercise belt”. This early Seventies device looked like an old-fashioned weighing scale, but with a 5in-wide rubber belt attached. Women would lean back against it, flick a switch and it would begin vibrating noisily – to shake cellulite into smooth submission, I assume.

The image of juddering peau d’orange on those primitive machines is burnt on to my memory, and perhaps explains why gadgets offering a battery-powered fast track to loveliness have always held a fascination.

Fortunately, there are plenty of them around – indeed, despite his absence from the recent Bond films, you could be forgiven for thinking that Q is alive and well, inventing gadgets for the beauty industry.

If beauty had a baddie, it would surely be Cellu Lite (even the name is sneaky), a force for evil whose goal is to upset and humiliate the female of our species.

But thanks to the latest gadgets, you can foil her plans from the comfort of your living room. For example, Endermologie, the salon-based cellulite massage technique favoured by Elle MacPherson and Claudia Schiffer, now offers a DIY version. The device includes the mechanical, pulsating rollers offered in the popular salon treatment, which lift and rejuvenate unhappy thighs.

Manhattan women went mad for this “body-sculpting” contraption when it was launched and, despite the £1,000 price tag, there’s a waiting list at Harrods. However, it’s worth booking an Endermologie session.

Ultratone, a more traditional electronic toning technique, has been around for decades. The latest incarnation, the Futura Pro home kit, will tone tummies and bingo wings as well as tackling lumpy thighs. Essentially, it consists of pads that use electromagnetic pulses to stimulate muscle activity, so it’s great for people looking for escape routes from their gym membership, and will also help with skin tone and lymphatic drainage.

Madonna and Gwyneth Paltrow use it, I’m told, so it should be very handy if you need to top up your two-hour-a-day workout. There’s also a facial version, which works on the principle that toned muscles will keep your skin smooth and perky.

Kate Moss, meanwhile, was so impressed by Tua Viso, a hand-held device that offers microcurrent facial stimulation, that she bought them for herself, her mum and all her pals. After a couple of weeks’ use the skin appears more toned. Two electrodes covered by soft pads boost circulation and collagen production, warming up sallow skin.

Technology is also being used in the war on wasted energy: you can now style your hair with a reduced carbon footprint. Eco Dry from Babyliss uses 1,000 watts instead of the usual 2,000, but remains just as effective, as the motor uses less heat but has a more powerful airflow.

Even zits can be zapped with Bond-style gadgets. The Zeno is a small, hand-held tool for the removal of blackheads and spots. You apply the machine to the offending blemish and it heats up and speed-dries the spot without damaging the skin. Silent, deadly and it looks like a mobile phone – Q would be proud.

Tested: non-invasive electro-acupuncture facial by Carole Franck

Cutting edge beauty, without the knife

Trick or treatment

Good for? Eliminating fine lines and wrinkles.What is it? A facial that uses “non-invasive acupuncture” – it is the treatment of choice for people who like the idea of hard-hitting facials, but dislike the reality of pain. Instead of using acupuncture needles, gold-plated electrodes are placed on reflex points on the skin (the same meridian points used in acupuncture). A low-wattage micro current is then passed through the electrodes “to recalibrate and regulate the energy of the cells”. According to the manufacturers, this helps to boost skin nutrition and oxygenation, and improves the absorption of products used in the facial. A current is also used to help creams to penetrate deep into the skin.

Ouch factor? The acupuncture is completely painless – in fact it’s strangely relaxing, lying there holding a conductor, with 20 electrodes strapped to your face. It was the fruit peel that preceded it that came as a bit of a shock. The tingling sensation soon became a stinging sensation, but it would be pushing it to say it actually hurt.

Clock-watching A facial takes about an hour and 45 minutes. The manufacturers claim their scientific research shows that four sessions will improve “collagen synthesis” by 50per cent, and will regenerate elastin fibres. Optimal results require ten sessions.

Downtime None. Like a normal facial you can go straight on to the street afterwards, without scaring the locals.

What to ask A practitioner should have an NVQ level 3 or equivalent in beauty therapy plus additional training from Carole Franck.

Cost £60-£170 depending on the location. Call 01823 421521 for details.

Dermatologist’s verdict: “In my opinion, non-invasive electro-acupuncture is a gimmick. Optimally formulated creams shouldn’t need a current to increase penetration into the skin,” says Dr Nick Lowe, a consultant dermatologist (drnicklowe.com).

Trick or treatment This feels very like a treat. In fact it feels like a nice normal facial that has been dressed up in the pseudo-scientific language of non-invasive beauty therapies.