What You Should Know About Your Medical Spa

What You Should Know About Your Medical Spa

Ask the Experts

Dr. Toscano and Dr. Teleszky answer your questions about . . .

What You Should Know About Your Medical Spa

Q:        Who is the Doctor in charge and where is he?

A:        Medical Spas are supposed to have a Physician present to provide medical-grade products and procedures. Unfortunately, the Doctor is often nowhere to be found. All too often, a Doctor whose primary area of interest and income may be something other than Medical Aesthetics signs a contract to be the “Medical Director” of a Medical Spa. He makes some extra income; the Spa staff gets to use prescription-only products and perform complex medical procedures but the Doctor isn’t even present. He could be performing surgery or seeing patients in his own office or even hitting golf balls.

If you are contemplating receiving a Medical Procedure at a Medical Spa, find out if the Doctor will actually be there during your visit.

Q:        Will my Medical Procedures be performed by the Doctor?

A:        Too often, Medical Spas are revenue “add-ons” to a busy medical practice. The Doctor may be busy seeing medical patients on the medical side of the office while an Aesthetician, Physician Assistant, Nurse Practitioner, or even a Nurse wields potent syringes of Botox and complicated lasers on the Spa side.  Even Plastic Surgeons and Dermatologists commonly hire Nurse Practitioners to perform Medical Procedures in their spa.

Before you walk in the door, ask if the Doctor will actually be the injecting the drugs or performing the Medical Procedures. If the answer is something like “No, our Nurse does that, but she’s very good,” do yourself a favor and look elsewhere.

Q:        How experienced is the Doctor?

A:        Commonly, a Doctor will simply add on a few nicely-appointed rooms to his busy office, buy some lasers, hire an Aesthetician and call it a Medical Spa. These Doctors often have no real interest in Medical Aesthetics and rarely perform any of the procedures themselves. They may be physically nearby but they are generally not well-versed in what works well and what doesn’t.

You should only trust your face to a Physician who practices Medical Aesthetics day in and day out. If the Doctor spends the vast majority of his time practicing day-to-day medicine or performing complex surgery in the O.R., can you really expect him to be up on the latest techniques and equipment used in Medical Aesthetics?

It’s perfectly all right to ask, “How many times per week does the Doctor actually perform this procedure?”

Q:        What kind of Aesthetic Training has the Doctor had?

A:        Many people assume that Board Certified Dermatologists or Plastic Surgeons make the best Aesthetic Physicians but that isn’t always the case.

Dermatologists spend a majority of their training learning how to treat diseases of the skin and how to recognize when a particular skin condition means that something serious is going on elsewhere in the body. If you have a suspicious or bothersome lesion or rash, you should visit a Dermatologist. If you want to soften a few wrinkles and look more refreshed, a Dermatologist may not always be your best choice.

Plastic Surgeons acquire many complex skills during their extensive training period including hand surgery, breast implants, facial reconstruction, scar revision and complex skin grafting techniques. Plastic Surgeons can work wonders for patients with those sorts of major problems. They may not be the best choice, however, for someone with facial sun damage or pigment irregularities.

Actual training in Medical Aesthetics is absent or only a very small part of many Dermatology and Plastic Surgery training programs. Most physicians who wish to become proficient in the appropriate use of Botox, Facial Fillers, Lasers, and prescription grade cosmeceuticals usually must take multiple courses from national experts on the various aspects of Medical Aesthetics. These courses are expensive and inconvenient but remain the major means for most Doctors to become proficient in these techniques.

Do not be afraid to ask about the training of the Doctor who will be doing your procedure. Do not accept “Dermatologist” or “Plastic Surgeon” as the only meaningful credentials. Ask if the Doctor has taken advanced courses specifically focused on Botox or Fillers or Facial Lasers.

Q:        What Medical services are available?

A:        A true Medical Spa should be able to design a specific treatment plan that will address all of your aesthetic concerns. Botox and Facial Fillers are just the beginning. Does the Spa have Intense Pulsed Light to erase brown and red spots? What about a Laser to promote new collagen formation and tighten skin? Can they remove unwanted hair? Can you receive expert advice about prescription-strength cosmeceuticals to repair ultra-violet damage and improve texture? Are medical-grade peels available?

Some Medical Spas are even able to offer body sculpting using a laser like the SmartLipo Laser. They are able to tighten skin and melt away fat from the waistline, thighs, hips, arms and even the neckline.

Make a list of what services you might be interested in and ask about them when you call. A true Medical Spa should be able to offer you a comprehensive program to assess your needs and address your concerns.

Q:        What Aesthetic services are available?

A:        Besides the medical-grade Aesthetic services like microdermabrasion and advanced chemical peels, a full-service Medical Spa should offer a selection of anti-aging and revitalizing facial treatments as well as a full menu of cosmetic and aesthetic services like waxing, paraffin treatments, permanent make-up and even detailed instruction on make-up application.

Ask what is available and check the web site for details.

Q:        What will the Aesthetician do for me and what is her experience?

A:        The key component of a professional Medical Spa experience is the consultation with the Aesthetician. It is the Aesthetician who will delve into the details of your skin care history, investigate the products you are presently using, analyze the condition of your skin and tailor a treatment program to address your concerns. If you need Medical procedures, it is the Aesthetician who involves the Physician at the appropriate times to get you the optimal results. If this consultation step is skipped, you are getting an inferior service and will have inferior results.

It takes years of experience for an Aesthetician to obtain the level of knowledge and understanding to perform a detailed and accurate consultation. Don’t be afraid to ask how long your Aesthetician has been practicing and whether a detailed consultation is a part of the service.

Q:        How will my care be documented?

A:        Before-and-after photo documentation is a must. Most advanced Medical Spas use a sophisticated camera system like the Canfield Visia to guide and document your treatment program. The Visia takes multiple photographs using various filters and then it applies complex software algorithms to your photos to highlight specific areas of skin damage. There should be no charge for this service. Ask how your Medical Spa plans to document your treatment program.

Q:        What other Spa services are available?

A:        Generally, most Medical Spa clients want to look more youthful and refreshed, but that is simply not enough. Spa clients want to feel better as well.  Stress reduction is a major part of the modern spa experience. How this is accomplished varies greatly from spa to spa.

Most spas offer massage. Ask about what type of massages are available. Deep neuromuscular may work well for the active athlete but the stressed-out executive may prefer Japanese Hot Stones or Lomi Lomi. Is the therapist experienced in Pregnancy Massage? What about Reflexology? Or Aromatherapy?

If you need a few hours or relaxation, will your spa get you a cappuccino and some lunch? Do they have a concierge service? Can they get your car washed, pick up your dry cleaning, or make your dinner reservations while you unwind? Will they provide limo service for your spa day?

You may not be looking for this level of service every time you visit a Medical Spa, but you should ask about it anyway. If your Spa is willing to provide concierge-level service, you can be confident that their dedication to all aspects of customer service is unparalleled.

Q:        What will my Spa experience be like?

A:        This is easy. When you walk in, you should immediately experience an overwhelming sensation of tranquility and relaxation. Every one of your senses should be involved. The surroundings should be visually beautiful.  The sounds should be light and airy. There should be a subtle scent that calms the mind and soothes the spirit. You should be offered a beverage that reduces stress and pleases the palate. The robes should be plush. The touch of your therapists should be confident and gentle.

In short, you should be ushered into a sanctuary of calm where the stresses of the world can be left behind and you can become refreshed, revitalized and feel more beautiful inside and out.

Ten Things You Should Know About Your Medical Spa Before You Walk in the Door

Ten Things You Should Know About

Your Medical Spa Before You Walk in the Door

By Francis E. Toscano, M.D.

Medical Director

Red Bamboo Medi Spa

1)         Who is the Doctor in charge and where is he?

Medical Spas are supposed to have a Physician present to provide medical grade products and procedures.  Unfortunately, the Doctor is often nowhere to be found.  All too often, a Doctor whose primary area of interest and income may be something other than Medical Aesthetics signs a contract to be the “Medical Director” of a Medical Spa.  He makes some extra income; the Spa staff gets to use prescription-only products and perform complex medical procedures but the Doctor isn’t even present.  He could be performing surgery or seeing patients in his own office or even hitting golf balls.

If you are contemplating receiving a Medical Procedure at a Medical Spa, find out if the Doctor will actually be there during your visit.

2)         Will my Medical Procedures be performed by the Doctor?

Too often, Medical Spas are revenue “add-ons” to a busy medical practice.  The Doctor may be busy seeing medical patients on the medical side of the office while an Aesthetician, Physician Assistant, Nurse Practitioner, or even a Nurse wields potent syringes of Botox and complicated lasers on the Spa side.  Even Plastic Surgeons and Dermatologists commonly hire Nurse Practitioners to perform Medical Procedures in their spa.

Before you walk in the door, ask if the Doctor will actually be the injecting the drugs or performing the Medical Procedures.  If the answer is something like “No, our Nurse does that, but she’s very good,” do yourself a favor and look elsewhere.

3)         How experienced is the Doctor?

Commonly, a Doctor will simply add on a few nicely-appointed rooms to his busy office, buy some lasers, hire an Aesthetician and call it a Medical Spa.  These Doctors often have no real interest in Medical Aesthetics and rarely perform any of the procedures themselves.  They may be physically nearby but they are generally not well-versed in what works well and what doesn’t.

You should only trust your face to a Physician who practices Medical Aesthetics day in and day out.  If the Doctor spends the vast majority of his time practicing day-to-day medicine or performing complex surgery in the O.R., can you really expect him to be up on the latest techniques and equipment used in Medical Aesthetics?

It’s perfectly all right to ask, “How many times per week does the Doctor actually perform this procedure?”

4)         What kind of Aesthetic Training has the Doctor had?

Many people assume that Board Certified Dermatologists or Plastic Surgeons make the best Aesthetic Physicians but that isn’t always the case.

Dermatologists spend a majority of their training learning how to treat diseases of the skin and how to recognize when a particular skin condition means that something serious is going on elsewhere in the body.  If you have a suspicious or bothersome lesion or rash, you should visit a Dermatologist.  If you want to soften a few wrinkles and look more refreshed, a Dermatologist may not always be your best choice.

Plastic Surgeons acquire many complex skills during their extensive training period including hand surgery, breast implants, facial reconstruction, scar revision and complex skin grafting techniques.  Plastic Surgeons can work wonders for patients with those sorts of major problems.  They may not be the best choice, however, for someone with facial sun damage or pigment irregularities.

Actual training in Medical Aesthetics is absent or only a very small part of many Dermatology and Plastic Surgery training programs.  Most physicians who wish to become proficient in the appropriate use of Botox, Facial Fillers, Lasers, and prescription grade cosmeceuticals usually must take multiple courses from national experts on the various aspects of Medical Aesthetics.  These courses are expensive and inconvenient but remain the major means for most Doctors to become proficient in these techniques.

Do not be afraid to ask about the training of the Doctor who will be doing your procedure.  Do not accept “Dermatologist” or “Plastic Surgeon” as the only meaningful credentials.  Ask if the Doctor has taken advanced courses specifically focused on Botox or Fillers or Facial Lasers.

5)         What Medical services are available?

A true Medical Spa should be able to design a specific treatment plan that will address all of your aesthetic concerns.  Botox and Facial Fillers are just the beginning.  Does the Spa have Intense Pulsed Light to erase brown and red spots?  What about a Laser to promote new collagen formation and tighten skin?  Can they remove unwanted hair?  Can you receive expert advice about prescription-strength cosmeceuticals to repair ultra-violet damage and improve texture?  Are medical-grade peels available?

Some Medical Spas are even able to offer body sculpting using a laser like the SmartLipo Laser.  They are able to tighten skin and melt away fat from the waistline, thighs, hips, arms and even the neckline.

Make a list of what services you might be interested in and ask about them when you call.  A true Medical Spa should be able to offer you a comprehensive program to assess your needs and address your concerns.

6)         What Aesthetic services are available?

Besides the medical-grade Aesthetic services like microdermabrasion and advanced chemical peels, a full-service Medical Spa should offer a selection of anti-aging and revitalizing facial treatments as well as a full menu of cosmetic and aesthetic services like waxing, paraffin treatments, permanent make-up and even detailed instruction on make-up application.

Ask what is available and check the web site for details.

7)         What will the Aesthetician do for me and what is her experience?

The key component of a professional Medical Spa experience is the consultation with the Aesthetician.  It is the Aesthetician who will delve into the details of your skin care history, investigate the products you are presently using, analyze the condition of your skin and tailor a treatment program to address your concerns.  If you need Medical procedures, it is the Aesthetician who involves the Physician at the appropriate times to get you the optimal results.  If this consultation step is skipped, you are getting an inferior service and will have inferior results.

It takes years of experience for an Aesthetician to obtain the level of knowledge and understanding to perform a detailed and accurate consultation.  Don’t be afraid to ask how long your Aesthetician has been practicing and whether a detailed consultation is a part of the service.

8)         How will my care be documented?

Before-and-after photo documentation is a must.  Most advanced Medical Spas use a sophisticated camera system like the Canfield Visia to guide and document your treatment program.  The Visia takes multiple photographs using various filters and then it applies complex software algorithms to your photos to highlight specific areas of skin damage.  There should be no charge for this service.  Ask how your Medical Spa plans to document your treatment program.

9)         What other Spa services are available?

Generally, most Medical Spa clients want to look more youthful and refreshed, but that is simply not enough.  Spa clients want to feel better as well.  Stress reduction is a major part of the modern spa experience.  How this is accomplished varies greatly from spa to spa.

Most spas offer massage.  Ask about what type of massages are available.  Deep neuromuscular may work well for the active athlete but the stressed-out executive may prefer Japanese Hot Stones or Lomi Lomi.  Is the therapist experienced in Pregnancy Massage?  What about Reflexology?  Or Aromatherapy?

If you need a few hours or relaxation, will your spa get you a cappuccino and some lunch?  Do they have a concierge service?  Can they get your car washed, pick up your dry cleaning, or make your dinner reservations while you unwind?  Will they provide limo service for your spa day?

You may not be looking for this level of service every time you visit a Medical Spa, but you should ask about it anyway.  If your Spa is willing to provide concierge-level service, you can be confident that their dedication to all aspects of customer service is unparalleled.

10)      What will my Spa experience be like?

This is easy.  When you walk in, you should immediately experience an overwhelming sensation of tranquility and relaxation.  Every one of your senses should be involved.  The surroundings should be visually beautiful.  The sounds should be light and airy.  There should be a subtle scent that calms the mind and soothes the spirit.  You should be offered a beverage that reduces stress and pleases the palate.  The robes should be plush.  The touch of your therapists should be confident and gentile.

In short, you should be ushered into a sanctuary of calm where the stresses of the world can be left behind and you can become refreshed, revitalized and feel more beautiful inside and out.

The author, Dr. Francis Toscano, along with Dr. Laszlo Teleszky, are the full-time Medical Directors of Red Bamboo Medi Spa in Northwood Plaza in Clearwater at 2516 C McMullen Booth Road.  For more information about the philosophy and services of Red Bamboo Medi Spa, visit their website at RBMediSpa.com or call 727-726-6100.

What is a Medical Spa?

What is a Medical Spa?
An interview with Raye Toscano

Many who are familiar with spa services do not really understand how a “medical” spa is different.  Raye Toscano, owner of REDBAMBOO Medi•Spa in Northwood Plaza, explains that all spas provide calming facial treatments and soothing massage.  Many of them provide additional services like permanent make-up, waxing, paraffin hand treatments, aromatic foot soaks and body polishing.  The best spas understand that true relaxation and spiritual renewal requires attention to all of the senses.  Delicious healthy beverages, pleasant aromas, exquisite surroundings and tranquil music, must all combine with expert touch to provide a true sanctuary of calm.

“We provide all of that for our clients,” Raye explains, “but a Medical Spa is so much more.  At REDBAMBOO Medi•Spa, our client’s visit begins with a complimentary skin analysis using the revolutionary Visia™ imaging system.  Irregularities in pigmentation, ultra violet damage, pore size, wrinkles and texture can be visualized using various filters.  Our expert clinical aesthicians then tailor a treatment program to address each client’s individual needs.  Because we are a Medical Spa, our skilled professionals can choose from multiple lines of cosmeceutical products like Skin Medica or even prescription-strength Ogagi.”

Specialized Medical Services performed by Physicians

For clients who desire an even greater degree of aesthetic transformation, REDBAMBOO Medi•Spa has two Board Certified Physicians who use the most sophisticated procedures and latest equipment to help clients erase away years of sun damage, stress and even dietary indulgences.  Dr. Francis Toscano, a Duke University graduate and Dr. Laszlo Teleszky, a graduate of U. C. Berkeley, have trained with nationally renowned experts and have received Level 4 Classification in the artistic use of Botox, Facial Fillers and Lasers in Aesthetic Medicine.  They can soften wrinkles and worry lines, diminish deep shadows around the nose and mouth and delicately plump and outline lips using Botox and the latest facial fillers.  Sun damage, brown spots, reddened areas and even loose skin can be significantly improved using Intense Pulsed Light or an Erbium Laser.  These are not the sort of services available at a standard spa.

“We also have the best hair-removal laser on the market,” Raye says.  “Now that those summer tans are beginning to fade it’s the perfect time to get rid of unwanted hair.  Imagine not having to shave at all next summer!”

SmartLipo™ available for the first time in Clearwater

“We are especially excited about our newest service,” Raye explained.  “For the first time anywhere in the Clearwater area, SmartLipo™ by Cynosure is now available exclusively at REDBAMBOO Medi•Spa.  No longer do you have to travel to Hillsborough County to experience the wonderful advantages of SmartLipo™ LaserBodySculpting.”

It seems that no matter how hard you exercise, how carefully you follow a healthy diet, how much weight you loose, there are always problem areas that never seem to completely go away.  The roll around the waist, the bulges at the hips, the loose skin of the inner thighs or upper arms, even the jaw line and neck can all be sculpted using the SmartLipo™ Laser.  A local anesthetic is infused through tiny incisions so that the procedure is virtually painless.  The SmartLipo™ laser then melts the solid fat cells into a liquid which is removed using suction.

In addition, SmartLipo™ promotes the formation of new collagen and tightens the underside of the skin producing a smoother skin texture than ever possible with traditional liposuction.  There is no need for general anesthesia and no I.V. medications are used.  The results are impressive and permanent and the recovery time is very rapid.  “The best way to determine if SmartLipo™ is right for you is to schedule a free consultation with one of our Physicians,” Raye explains.

The REDBAMBOO Medi•Spa story

“But that’s not the whole story,” she says.  “At REDBAMBOO Medi•Spa, we have an unparalleled dedication to customer service.  We believe that our clients deserved to be pampered in every way.  We can even provide a Mercedes Limo pick-up service.  And for the busy woman who needs a break from her daily grind, we will gladly schedule appointments outside of our normal business hours in the evenings or on weekends.  Call us at 726-6100 to schedule your consult and visit us RBmedispa.com.

Medical Services

SmartLipo by Red Bamboo Medi Spa

Laser technology has completely changed liposuction. You no longer have to live with that roll around your waist, that belly pooch, those bulges at your hips or bra line, or the loose skin of your inner thighs or upper arms. Even your jaw line and neck can be sculpted and tightened with SmartLipo by Red Bamboo.

In the tranquil setting at Red Bamboo, liposuction becomes a virtually painless, wide-awake procedure with tiny incisions, minimal downtime, significantly less cost and spectacular results.

At Red Bamboo, you begin with a complimentary consultation with one our Board Certified Physicians. We explain in great detail what you can expect to experience during your SmartLipo procedure and the Physician will answer every question you may have.

On the day of your SmartLipo, we greet you with some fruit or a muffin and some hot tea. We help you get comfortably settled in a beautiful suite with exquisite artwork, soothing music, gentle aromas and the calming touch of a massage therapist.

Red Bamboo’s Board Certified Physicians first numb the skin and then, after making tiny incisions no larger than the tip of a pencil, painlessly infuse anesthetic under the skin. There is no need for IV lines and no general anesthesia. Once the layer of fat is completely numb, a fiber optic thread the size of a strand of thin pasta delivers the laser energy that melts fat and tightens skin.

Because you are fully wide awake, you may chat with the Physicians, listen to music, sip juice and eat crackers while we sculpt a new you. The melted fat is removed with suction and we help you into a compression garment that you wear for the next two weeks.

After a light lunch, your Red Bamboo Physician reviews any questions you may have and gives you his private cell phone number so that you may contact him directly day or night. Finally, we offer you car service directly to your home in a Mercedes limo. Most of our patients are back to work the next day.

It is easy to become confused by similar sounding names: Slimlipo, Smoothlipo, Cool Lipo, Pro Lipo, Aqua Lipo, Artlipo, Smartlipo MPX, Smartlipo TPX. All of these machines are capable of melting fat and tightening skin. The real difference at Red Bamboo is the quality and experience you receive from the Physicians doing your medical procedure to sculpt a new you.

In 2008, Dr. Toscano and Dr. Teleszky became the first to introduce SmartLipo to Pinellas County and the Tampa Bay area and they have been performing more of these amazing procedures in this area than anyone else.

The Physicians at Red Bamboo have been named “Best of Tampa Bay in SmartLipo” by duPont Registry and “Doctors of Distinction” by Tampa Bay Metro Magazine. Red Bamboo’s satisfied patients include other Physicians, Registered Nurses and even some celebrities.

Advantages of SmartLipo by Red Bamboo:

  • Painless
  • No IV and no general anesthesia
  • Tightens your skin as it melts fat
  • Sculpts away problem areas
  • Minimal or no downtime
  • Much less expensive than traditional liposuction
  • Highly experienced Physicians named “Best of Tampa Bay in SmartLipo” by duPont Registry

Contact us to schedule your complimentary consultation to see what SmartLipo by Red Bamboo can do for you.


Botox

Wrinkles and lines no longer need to be an inevitable part of aging. Botox treatment actually removes wrinkles, rather than simply filling them in. Facial shaping with Botox can safely and effectively lift and shape the brow, soften wrinkles, smile lines, frown lines and other dynamic lines for a more youthful and rested appearance.

Administered by Red Bamboo’s skilled Physicians, Botox takes only a few minutes, yet the beautiful results will last for months.

[There is no pricing available; should the price be on all or just some of the services?]


Volume Enhancing Fillers

A combination of injectable treatments can give your facial skin an amazing, refreshing lift with minimal risk, a very brief recovery period and an affordable price.  The key to successful use of fillers is an expert injector knowing which of the many options available will work best for each individual, and on each type of face and skin.  The latest cosmetic fillers are not only for plumping the lips. They can minimize or temporarily eliminate prominent smile lines, wrinkles and frown lines.

Red Bamboo’s Physicians conduct a comprehensive consultation with you to tailor a treatment plan unique to you.

[There is no pricing available; should the price be on all or just some of the services?]


IPL Photorejuvenation

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) skin treatments using the photorejuvenation process represent a breakthrough in age-defying skin care. This non-invasive technique treats skin damage like brown spots, red spots, uneven skin tone and sun damage. These simple and safe treatments provide skin tightening, facial contouring and collagen stimulation for progressive correction of sun damaged and/or sagging skin with no down time.

A series of treatments is necessary to achieve optimal results.

Face – $400

Face and Décolleté – $500

Forearms and Hands – $300


Laser Hair Removal

Laser treatment for unwanted hair is a non-invasive approach to permanent hair reduction from virtually any area of the body. Laser hair removal results in no down time and you will be able to resume normal activities immediately.

Six sessions are usually required to achieve desired results, but vary by individual.

Large areas: full leg, back – $550 – $625
Medium areas: lower legs, arms, shoulders – $350 – $400
Small area: bikini, face, under arm – $175 – $275