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Fringe Plastic Surgery Procedures Are On The Rise

In the world of plastic surgery, there are the usual suspects - procedures that are considered the most popular and common: breast augmentation, nose jobs, liposuction, eye lifts and tummy tucks.

But “fringe” procedures (aka offbeat procedures designed to fine-tune those near-perfect features) are also starting to attract Americans and raise the question ‘what do you get for the body that has everything?’

Dr. Richard Chaffoo, triple-board certified plastic surgeon in San Diego and Dr. Richard Chaffoo, board certified plastic surgeon in New Jersey provided a list of some of the "fringe" procedures which are attracting more Americans to plastic surgery procedures.

Toe Shortening and Foot Pad Plumping

Christian Louboutins, Manolo Blahniks, Jimmy Choos. Women will do just about anything to wear designer shoes – even shortening their toes to fit into them.

According to San Diego plastic surgeon Dr. Richard Chaffoo, “Toe shortening entails removing little pieces of bone from overly long toes in order to improve the foot’s look.” And what about that phrase “no pain, no beauty?”

For ladies who discover heels unbearable, foot pad plumping helps add an additional cushion to the heel or ball of the foot in order to ease discomfort associated with those fancy shoes.

“High heels may look glamorous, but wearing them for hours on end can be grueling — especially the sky-high styles currently gracing the catwalk. An injectable, such as one particular utilized to plump wrinkles, is used to give the foot added padding,” says Dr. Richard Chaffoo.

Sweat Prevention

Several men and women suffer from an embarrassing and emotionally distressing condition that causes them to sweat much more than the average person. “The severity of the sweating varies by particular person, and some will only have problems with certain areas of their bodies such as excessively sweaty hands or feet,” says Dr. Brian Glatt, New Jersey plastic surgeon. According to Dr. Brian Glatt, Botox is utilized to efficiently treat such a condition. Plastic surgeons inject Botox into the sweat glands, blocking them from excreting perspiration.

Earlobe Lift

Believe it or not, the ears are one of those body parts that can instantly give away your age. While it's well known that the condition of a woman's hands and neck can reveal her true age, few people realize that the appearance of our earlobes is another telltale sign. “Earlobes lose volume, just as your face loses volume as you get older,” says Dr. Brian Glatt.

According to Dr. Brian Glatt, as collagen and elasticity decreases, earlobes often become elongated, saggy and thin, with fine wrinkling on the surface. Women who wear heavy earrings are particularly at risk because the weight of the jewelry inevitably pulls the ear downwards and causes the skin to become weaker and stretched. Referred to as earlobe rejuvenation, dermal fillers such as Restylane is injected to add volume and strength.

Cankle Lipo

While most women are fortunate to have a narrowing where the lower calf and ankle meet, giving a shapely contour, some have little or no discernible difference in shape - which is known as cankles. But is surgery to the delicate ankle area a good idea? Some plastic surgeons say liposuctioning the lower leg is definitely doable.

According to Dr. Richard Chaffoo, conventional liposuction - a procedure that removes fat deposits from specific areas of the body via a small incision in the skin and a cannula (a small hollow tube), through which fat is suctioned - can be used on various parts of the body.

But many surgeons are generally reluctant to operate on the calves and ankles, as results can be poor and it may leave an uneven, lumpy look. “The ankle is a tough area,” says Dr. Richard Chaffoo. “There’s not a lot of fat there but there are a lot of nerves and blood vessels and the lymphatics that allow fluid to drain are somewhat less available in that area. Trauma to them can lead to swelling which leads to a prolonged recovery.”


Botox for the chin? Dr. Glatt is well aware of the stunning “after effects” of Botox when used for several anti-aging applications on the chin. Prior to this type of usage, many patient would need to undergo surgery or more invasive procedures to achieve the same result. According to Dr. Glatt, many individuals develop a rough skin texture on the front area of the chin that can look something like an orange peel, which is how it gets the name, peau d’orange (French for orange peel skin).

This crêping of the skin is mostly a result of repeated contractions of the mentalis (chin muscle). Over time, the contractions may result in numerous thin, cross-hatched lines that give the chin this undesirable look. “Most physicians treat peau d’orange with small amounts of Botox that are placed with one or two tiny injections at the origin of the mentalis muscle, which is at the bottom tip of the chin,” says Dr. Brian Glatt. A physician should be careful not to inject too much Botox in this area, so as not to impact the ability to pucker the mouth. The intent is to gently relax the muscles in the chin, so that contractions are not as pronounced.

Knee Lift

According to some experts, the most commonly hated part of the female body is not the belly or the butt, but the knee. “Many women are self-conscious of their knees,” says Dr. Richard Chaffoo. “Perhaps because they can easily see them in the mirror, whereas they can’t always see the hips and thighs.” Dr. Richard Chaffoo says knee liposuction is usually done along with other areas, but that not all women are candidates for the procedure. “Not all women have fat there,” he says. “Many times it’s muscle.” If it is fat and the patient wants it removed, a doctor will do so through tumescent liposuction, an outpatient procedure that involves a local anesthetic.

**Patients should always seek out a board certified plastic surgeon for any cosmetic procedure, particularly those that are unusual or uncommon.**

Information above presented courtesy of Dr. Richard Chaffoo, triple-board certified plastic surgeon in San Diego and Dr. Brian Glatt, board certified plastic surgeon in New Jersey.

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