Dermatologists Lead Research In Cosmetic Procedures

Omar A. Ibrahimi, MD, PhD, presented the results of a study funded by ASDS at the meeting’s opening session.

CHICAGO — Dermatologists led as researchers in most categories in an analysis of published studies focusing on noninvasive or minimally invasive cosmetic procedures, according to results presented at the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery annual meeting. 

Omar A. Ibrahimi, MD, PhD  Omar A. Ibrahimi,MD, PhD

“The number of invasive and noninvasive cosmetic procedures are increasing year over year” for both ASDS members and plastic surgery society members, Ibrahimi said. “Unfortunately, there is very little regulation by state and federal governments,” he said. “There’s been a lot of marketing done by other specialties to position themselves as leaders [in the procedures].”

Ibrahimi and colleagues created a list of commonly performed invasive and noninvasive procedures, including injectables and body contouring. The also included a few invasive aesthetic procedures or controls.

They searched PubMed, using keywords for each of the procedures, for original research studies, randomized controlled trials, clinical trials and case series. The most frequently cited studies in the categories were included in the analysis.

The researchers included the first, last and corresponding authors, and determined their specialties by either finding out if they were board-certified or through an Internet search. They used a weighted scoring system, based on number citations and number of authors who were dermatologists or other specialists, including plastic surgeons. A study was awarded more points if it was highly cited.

Results of 14 of 18 categories of noninvasive or minimally invasive procedures favored dermatologists as the study authors.

In the use of Botox (onabotulinumtoxinA, Allergan) for skin aging, hyaluronic acid injectables, laser treatment, noninvasive body contouring, including cryolipolysis, dermatologists had the highest score.

Plastic surgery specialists were favored in studies of liposuction and breast augmentation, revision and implants.

“It’s really a team sport, so it’s not to denigrate any particular specialty,” Ibrahimi said. “But it’s to highlight the importance the role dermatology has played.”

 “This really is a patient safety issue … I think this is something we should be really passionate about and work to educate our patients,” he concluded.  — by Bruce Thiel


Ibrahimi, OA. Who are the Pioneers: A Critical Analysis of Innovation and Expertise in Cutaneous Cosmetic and Surgical Procedures. Presented at: ASDS Annual Meeting; Oct. 15-18, 2015; Chicago