The Doctor is in …
by Dr. Katie Rodan
In her book I Feel Bad About My Neck, Nora Ephron speaks about aging with wit and insight. One truth she shares is that there’s no such thing as a “neck lift.” Even though the book was a best-seller, read by women the world over, the misperception that the neck may be treated independently from the face is widely believed.
Take one of my patients, Margo*, whom I saw a few weeks ago, distraught with her “saggy turkey neck.” In addition to the loose skin, she hated the lines, wrinkles, and splotchy pigmentation visible along the sides. It’s a condition dermatologists call “poikiloderma,” resulting from chronic sun damage. Because most of us forget to slather the sunscreen on our neck daily, the sides are always exposed. The middle of the neck is a different story– like a visor on a baseball cap, it’s protected. Desperate for an easy solution to restore the neck of her youth, Margo looked to me for help.
I hated to break the bad news to her that there’s no “quick fix” procedure. Reversal of the sag requires an invasive face lift (a minimum of 2- 3 weeks to heal) and won’t improve the overall quality of her skin. Fortunately, I did have some good news to share with Margo. A topical, medicated skincare regimen will greatly improve the appearance of her poikiloderma.
Margo was skeptical but agreed to hold off on a referral for a full face-lift for 60 days. She was willing to spend the next month adhering to a program formulated to diminish discoloration and improve the overall tone and texture. Forty-five days later, Margo returned to show off her results. She was thrilled with her improved appearance and decided to put a face-lift on the back burner for now; instead, she was determined to stick to her “new neck” regimen.
The lesson here is that you don’t always need surgical pain to get that gain. It is possible to prevent and correct many of the signs of aging with a clinically proven skincare solution.
*Patient name has been changed to protect privacy.