A combination of earlier magazine work and new blog posts

South Florida Specialists – The New Face Of Cosmetic Enhancement

Dr. Mark Nestor’s State-of the Art Combination Therapy Is Cutting-Edge

Dr. Mark Nestor, the director of Aventura’s renowned Center for Cosmetic Enhancement, is one of the foremost authorities on erasing years from the faces of South Florida residents. “In a place where the sun is harsh almost all year long,” he recently told us in his large, professional office, “that is no easy task.”

But if anyone is cut out for it, it’s Nestor. The 51-year-old, baby-faced doctor might be his own best personal advertisement. His peers acknowledge him as being at the forefront of cosmetic laser and light procedures, and his Aventura office has 32 cutting-edge devices, more than any other South Florida practice. Nestor has created a one-stop shop for rolling back the years.

“We are unique,” he told us. “There are actually very few like us in the world. We have so many devices to effect changes, both medical and aesthetic. We do not just make people look better, but also make them healthier. Here, we don’t just zap away wrinkles and fill in crevices on the face, but we also help people eliminate everything from acne to rosacea [a blood-vessel condition that creates redness on the face].”

Nestor actually oversees a mini cosmetic empire of 23 offices and 35 dermatologists. Married 18 years to Eva Ritvo, a professor at the University of Miami’s School of Medicine and chair of Mount Sinai Medical Center’s Department of Psychiatry-the two met in medical school in California-he also has two children. And in addition to his family and running a dermatology office that often has a one-month waiting list, he finds time to serve as president of the International Society of Cosmetic and Laser Surgeons, as well as president of the American Society for Photodynamic Therapy, two of the industry’s most respected organizations. And somehow still he manages to do clinical research.

I understand the trials and tribulations of trying to do so much,” he says. “But I really love what I do, so that makes it a lot easier to work so hard.”

What makes Nestor different from many other dermatologists is his extensive stable of devices, which allow him to offer “combination therapy, where we can combine various treatments to produce the best possible results for each patient.”

He has a point. The devices used in cosmetic dermatology can be prohibitively expensive. For instance, Fraxel is a laser treatment that is the choice du jour for many cosmetic-surgery junkies. At $1,000 a treatment and six to nine required to maximize its benefits in eliminating skin imperfections from aging or sun damage removing stretch marks, acne scars and dark spots, the cost can seem high to

patients. But the Fraxel machine itself costs more than $100,000. Titan’s CoolGlide Xeo, which combines laser technology with the next generation in pulsed-light treatments, is used for hair reduction, vascular treatments and skin resurfacing and costs about $150,000. Sciton’s Profile Laser unit, used for hair removal, obliteration of spider veins, and to treat rosacea, sets a derm back about $125,000. Even Thermage, wildly popular for using noninvasive radio-frequency technology to restore collagen, is a $50,000 unit.

Nestor also gave us a tour of some of his newest age-zapping tech toys, including IPL (intermittent pulse light) for zapping brown spots and enhancing collagen, and erbium laser, the latest for treating aging and sun-damaged skin. These devices are so expensive that most derms usually have to settle on just one or two therapies and push those to all their patients. Nestor has a remarkable advantage by being able to afford almost every device on the market. When you sit in his waiting room, a large, wall-mounted plasma television recycles before-and-after pictures of patients who have received his treatments. Only Photoshop could make them look better.

“Fifty percent of my practice is cosmetic and the other half is medical,” he told us. “But no matter what a patient comes to us for, we offer a range of procedures for different needs, precisely tailored to the patient.”

In addition to the regular treatments found in any modern dermatologist’s office-Botox and a battery of fillers, from hyaluronic acids to collagen to Restylane and Radiance-it’s Nestor’s approach that sets him apart. “I want to tackle both the beauty needs as well as the health of my patients.” For instance, when someone with severe acne, or melasma, a skin blotchiness, comes to him, he’s convinced that when they leave looking better, their overall health improves since their self-esteXri is boosted while their stress-fretting about their condition-is reduced.

“Expectations are key as to how someone views their results,” he says. “If people are realistic about what can be done cosmetically, they will be very happy. If someone wants to roll back several decades with a one-day procedure, they might not be pleased.”

Financial and time considerations are also issues for many patients: Some don’t have the money to do everything they want; others are so busy with work they can’t afford the downtime. “So I work with them on an individual basis,” Nestor says, “asking what they want and how we can work out a program that works for them and their lifestyle.

“Some people are afraid of undergoing surgery,” he adds. “They have a fear of the knife. That’s why our services are so important. We can, with the combinations of therapies available in our office, reproduce many of the results of far more invasive procedures, and we can do it with fewer side effects. With our work, you can postpone a facelift for many years. That’s the power of great dermatology. That’s what we offer.”

Nestor reminded us that his office gets busier at this time of the year. “I don’t know if anybody would appreciate opening a gift and seeing $1,000 to get rid of wrinkles,” he says. “But a lot of people say they give it to themselves as a holiday gift.”