Meet Dr. Ifeoma (Iffie) Okoronkwo, a Regenerative Medicine and Bio-cosmetics doctor who recently launched her new practice Beyond Beauty by Dr. O in New York City. Dr. O, a Spine and Sports Rehabilitation Medicine and Pain Management physician, is board-certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Manhattan Spine and Sports Medicine and uses her vast knowledge of all aspects of the human body to help her patients look and feel like their younger selves. Dr. O has been able to achieve a unique approach to beauty, in which her goal is to turn back the clock of aging as naturally as possible. She does this by rejuvenating and re-sculpting the face, resurfacing the skin using the same techniques used in regenerative pain management therapy. At its core, regenerative medicine attempts to tap into the bodies own healing properties to restore tissue where there were once deficits and enhance growth potential. I met with Dr. O and was honored to interview her about her novel and unusual approach.
Q: What is the ideal of beauty that you would like to help your patients achieve?
A: As I expanded my practice from “bones to beauty,” I quickly realized that there is no “standard” nor definition of “ideal beauty“; I strive to make each of my patients look like the best version of themselves. During an initial beauty consultation my focus is to be a good listener. Some times patients have very specific needs, they have certain areas that bother them and they want them to be addressed. Other times a patient may simply say,”help, I’m starting to look old” and this is when I can truly practice the art of medicine; I evaluate what aspects of their skin and facial structure may be contributing to this “old” look. Some patients would benefit from skin brightening techniques, while others from skin resurfacing techniques. Almost everyone would benefit from skin tightened and lifted but the question becomes in which areas, how tight and how lifted? Yet, for certain individuals, what might be considered a feature that requires correction (crows feet, smiles lines, sun spots, even scars) is actually what makes them so uniquely beautiful. When it comes to natural beauty the most important tool I use to help my patients is ultimately found in my patients themselves; I grown their collagen, their elastin, use their body’s regenerative abilities. Therefore, every result is unique much in the same way every individual is unique. In the end, I strive to make my patients happy by creating their ideal beauty — younger and more refreshed, but theirs.
Q: What are the areas that your patients complain the most about and how can you help them achieve results by applying the latest research in physical therapy?
A: The most common complaint my patients have is sagging skin. The sagging usually results in deep wrinkles and a thickened look to the skin. Smile lines, for example, that form around the mouth are often a result of both bone loss and fat atrophy (wasting away) in the cheeks. Skin that was once tightened across the cheekbone starts to fall, creating these smile lines. In my patients I address smile lines not by just filling them in but by considering the natural aging processes that created them in the first place. Some research suggests that regenerative techniques — such as platelet rich plasma (PRP) and collagen induction through tissue injury — can encourage these fat pads to regrow and collagen to regenerate. This approach encourages a more natural looking result for my patients.
Q: Are the novelties you are talking about going to be available to all women or does it remain an expensive recourse? What can women with lesser means do to remain beautiful over the years?
A: One procedure that many consider financially accessible is Micro-needling. This basic process of tissue regeneration through injury can be attained quite economically. Micro-needling causes tissue injury which then encourages repair and cellular regeneration. Though some people say that they do not see results from Microneedling, this is likely because the injury is not occurring at the correct layer of the skin where the cells that grow collagen and elastin reside. What can add to the cost of these natural beauty procedures is the addition of PRP and other growth factors that accelerate the process.
Learn more about Dr. O and her services by visiting https://beyondbeautybydro.com/.