Golden Age of Quackery

I’m never at my best with short quips, so here’s another lengthy post that I hope you might find interesting. There actually is a point to all this …

I have several friends (physicians) in the medical spa business. Yesterday I was introduced to, and stunned by, the latest “awesome” treatment: it involves stem cells. Someone (said to be a scientist) in Switzerland is harvesting cow’s (embryo) stem cells and freeze-drying them. These are then reconstituted and rubbed onto the face of the person getting “stem cell therapy.” Yes, there you have it: COW stem cells applied to the epidermis to do “god only knows what?” This would be like rubbing reconstituted cow heart cells on your chest and calling it “heart therapy.”

(Yes, I’m writing this because of yesterday’s beauty treatment “revelation.” It made me sick.)

I asked my physician friend what this “stem cell therapy” does. He said: “rejuvenates the skin.” Of course, I was interested in what specifically happens between rubbing it on the face, and the rejuvenation. For any of you that understand stem cells, well, you are probably laughing. However, the treatment is $350+ … not much to laugh about. (You need 10-15 treatments to “see a difference.”)

A few years ago, Dr. P (the surgeon I used to work with) bought a brand new diode laser “for me to use.” We attended a special physician’s training class given by none other that Dr. Gold himself (dermatologist credited with inventing laser hair removal.) It was a memorable experience; his most memorable statements were these:

“Doctors, if you want to be in business for more than 5 years, never use the word ‘permanent,’ only say, ‘permanent reduction’ because the hairs seem to come back … eventually.”

“The most perfect patient for laser would be a cadaver. Their skin is totally white and there is no chance of regrowth.” (He said this with a laugh.)

“There are all kinds of lasers ‘out there’ but they all seem to work about the same. Don’t worry too much about the latest innovations.”

Today, in the esthetics/medical field it’s the “wild west.” All kinds of questionable treatments abound that do little or nothing except take your money. Dr. P, who has a thriving medi-spa, has all the “gadgets du jour” and is doing well financially. The public is horribly gullible: sad but true. Yes, it’s all about money.

But then they’re the electrologists … us. Sure we argue about minor details, but it’s because we are passionate about our field. Nearly all electrologists are committed to their patients and try their best to provide excellent work. We’re the “good guys.” Over the years I have only met two electrologists who were mainly interested in money. Our group? We have the big hearts and empathy for those with unwanted hair. I’m impressed with all the electrologists on Hairtell: they ARE “the real deal.”

Most of us, in our field, feel uncomfortable being linked to the “beauty industry” because we instinctively see the fraud of many techniques and the greed. I know laser has “it’s place” but those doing the procedure simply don’t have what we have. Most are just doing a job and were hired by a physician whose main interest is enhancing his “life-style.”

And those “beauty treatments?” Somebody should write a book. The early 20th century was called “the Golden Age of Quackery.” This new age could be called the “Platinum Age of Fraud.”

Using cow stem cells to rejuvenate our skin sounds maddening!! As mad as mad cows disease! I don’t know too much about what they have been experimenting with stem cell research, but I just tried googling “cow stem cell research” to see if there were any articles on this new treatment. I then came across articles such as, – describing how they are making hybrid human-cow embryos for research purposes. They are using the eggs of the cow and fusing them with human DNA.

“the resulting chimeric human-bovine embryos would be grown for six days, then harvested for stem cells. All embryos would be required to be destroyed by 14 days”

I wonder if this is part of the process for making this new treatment for skin rejuvenation. Sounds a bit creepy. I’m glad I only know from the surface what goes on behind all of this research…

I like the fact that research is being done to help improve conditions, but I think things have gone a bit too far.

Result of too intense application of cow stem cells in the face?

It seems that any product that contains the magic word “Laser” has secured the sale. Laboratories now produce creams with “Laser effect”.

In my opinion, the indiscriminate use of laser in any type of hair, at any age, and in any area of the body and face, will cause the powerful light goes off in the darkness of disbelief. As with the Electrolysis, too “bad” application will lead the customer to the utmost skepticism.

I love Hagar!!! (and Michael, Beate, and Josefa!)