Hand Rejuvenation Overview
Hands are one of the first areas on the body to show aging and damage, due especially to environmental factors like sun exposure. Age spots, loss of fatty tissue, less oil and less collagen to provide elasticity in the skin can all leave the hands looking wrinkled, bony, discolored, and veined. Cosmetic surgeons now use a variety of techniques to restore a more youthful appearance to the hands, including chemical peels, laser skin resurfacing, microdermabrasion, various injectable fillers, and sclerotherapy. In general, hand rejuvenation will involve a combination of these techniques.
All patients may be advised to abstain from medications that can thin the blood (such as aspirin) for two weeks before treatment. If you smoke, you should quit for at least the two weeks before and after your procedure. If you are receiving fat transfer to the hands and are over the age of 45, you may be required to obtain medical clearance by an independent physician prior to undergoing surgery. Additional preparatory measures may need to be taken, depending on the specific combination of procedures being performed. Dr. Vallecillos will discuss these with you during your pre-operative consultation.
Whether anesthesia will be required – and if it is, what type will be used – will depend on the specific combination of procedures being performed. The patient may be administered a local anesthetic, a local anesthetic along with a sedative, and in cases where fat transfer is used, may undergo general anesthesia.
- Dr. Vallecillos will recommend a specific combination of procedures to achieve your hand rejuvenation, depending on your diagnosis and circumstances. These may include any of the following:
During a chemical peel, a chemical solution is applied to the areas of your skin to be treated. The solution removes the outer layers of the skin, which contain most of the wrinkles, discoloration, and age spots.
Laser Skin Resurfacing
Laser skin rejuvenation comprises any of a number of laser treatments, all of which use the targeted application of a laser to remove damaged layers of skin. Depending on the laser used, this therapy can be effective on everything from melasma and other discoloration to wrinkles and folds in the skin.
With microdermabrasion, a special instrument is applied to the skin to gently sand away the outer layer of skin, also known as the epidermis. This is a minimally abrasive technique that can stimulate the production of collagen for more elastic, younger-looking skin.
There exist several options for injectable fillers, differentiated by ingredients but all of which temporarily augment volume within the skin. Some of these options include:
Radiesse (calcium hydroxylapatite) is an injectable gel that both immediately restores facial volume and encourages the production of collagen over time.
Juvederm, an injectable gel made of hyaluronic acid (a naturally-occurring complex sugar) temporarily plumps and fills loose skin.
Sclerotherapy may be used to diminish the appearance of prominent veins in the hands. With this method, an inflammation-inducing solution is injected into the veins, which will eventually cause them to collapse and fade from view.
The most invasive of the hand rejuvenation treatment methods, fat transfer requires that fat tissue is extracted (via liposuction) from a donor site on the patient’s body, usually the abdomen or inner thighs. The fat is then purified and prepared for injection into strategic areas of the hand(s) to restore lost volume.
- After hand rejuvenation procedures, the patient’s hand will be softer and smoother. The skin will be evenly toned, and the veins will be much less prominent. Hand rejuvenation also minimizes pores and reduces wrinkles.
Hand Rejuvenation FAQ
Who is a candidate for hand rejuvenation?
You should consider hand rejuvenation if you are an adult and suffer from signs of aging and skin damage on the hands, which may include a combination of chemical peels, microdermabrasion, laser therapy, injectable fillers, sclerotherapy, and fat transfer.
What is the recovery time for hand rejuvenation?
Recovery after hand rejuvenation will vary based on which procedures were performed and how aggressive the chosen treatments were. For less invasive techniques, such as microdermabrasion and injectables, there is little to no downtime for patients. Laser resurfacing may result in redness and slight swelling of the skin and sun exposure should be avoided both before and after treatment. More invasive procedures such as fat transfer will have a longer recovery time, but patients are usually able to return to normal activities within a few weeks.
Are there risks or side effects with hand rejuvenation?
Side effects will also depend on the procedures performed and how aggressive the treatments were. Side effects from injectables can include tenderness and bruising at the injection sites, and rarely can result in firmness or infection. With microdermabrasion, treated skin may temporarily appear red or pink. Patients who receive laser therapy may experience some redness, swelling, and itchy skin, though these tend to diminish quickly. In some cases skin will bronze and peel. Although fat transfer is a low risk surgery, there is a small risk of scarring and infection.
How long do the results last?
The longevity of results from hand rejuvenation will depend on a number of factors, including the types of procedures performed, as well as the patient’s pre-operative and post-operative skin care.