As women enter the menopause years they often notice a rapid deterioration in their appearance due to the reduction in oestrogen and other essential hormones. Fortunately it may only take some "clever tweaking" by the experienced doctors and nurses at the ARGERA Centre to help make a patient look and feel better. This was the experience of Lesley, our "Menopause makeover" patient, who wants to share her cosmetic journey with other women to help them realise that they are not alone in how they feel about themselves. Here is her story.
Lesley presented to the ARGERA Centre at the age 56, after losing 45kg in weight. Her weight loss made her feel healthy and invigorated but the impact it had on her face combined with the accelerated lost collagen seen at menopause made her feel flat. She found it hard to truly appreciate her vibrant, go-getting nature. In other words, she felt like a young woman trapped in an older body, despite her amazing achievement with her weight.
Like many patients Lesley was limited in money and didn’t want to spend it on things that didn’t work. She was also afraid that she would get addicted to treatments once started, and that she would look unnatural, or artificial. She was happy to look her age, but wanted to be a good version of it. Lesley had never had treatment before and wanted to approach it in a minimalistic way.
From the "before" photographs we can see that Lesley suffered poor elasticity resulting in sagging of the skin and wrinkles. She had lost volume to her face and was a dynamic facial mover around the eyes and the forehead (at testament to her vibrant nature).
On our first treatment we focused on filing the lines she hated most – her lower cheek ones. It was explained that she would still have some residual lines because of the extent of her aging and that it might not achieve all she was hoping for. It was a good place to start and so 1.5ml of a long term filler was used. Lesley felt that it helped but realized that she couldnt change 56years of aging in one treatment, and that she would need a more extensive treatment for her specifc concerns.
We discussed deep fractionated CO2 laser resurfacing, as she was an ideal candidate having lighter skin type with finer lines. She understood the downtime would be involved and that maximal results would not be seen for at least 6 to 12 months, although we would have an improvement in around 10days. Lesley required a week off work but was able to apply Oxygnetics foundation/moisturizer which covered the peeling/red skin and promoted healing. She was then started on a skincare regime of daily sunscreen with medical strength vitamin C and nighttime medical strength vitamin A and B.
Six weeks later a definitive improvement was seen and Lesley decided to try wrinkle relaxers to her crows feet, glabella and a small dose to her forehead. At first she was worried that she would look stiff but since ARGERA specializes in natural results we were able to achieve a natural less, wrinkled appearance that she loved. In addition she decided to also correct her collapsing lips with filler. Again, wanting a natural result.
At 3 months, the face had improved so much that Lesley decided that she now needed her neck lasered to match her face. At the same time we opted to do a fat transfer with the latest technique in Europe of "NanoFat". Nanofat involves crushing the fat cells to their smallest state to create collagen and stem cells, which can be injected into dermal lines to fill them. This gives an instant effect and over time stimulates collagen naturally. We put Nanofat into her glabella , tear troughs, around the mouth and any outstanding lines. The standard fat transfer was applied to her cheeks to restore volume.
And the final result you see in the "post" photos.
Initially Lesley needed a lot of work to repair the years of cosmetic self neglect but now all she needs to do to maintain her looks is medical strength skincare, wrinkle relaxers 3 to 4 times a year, lips yearly and the odd dermal filler to common areas of sag such as the corner of the lips, nasoloabials and marionettes.
Her laser resurfacing will last 7 to 10 years, and the fat transfer 3 years to a life time depending upon the patient’s health.