UCI-led study shows emerging rhinoplasty technique improves appearance and breathing

While beauty may be in the eyes of the beholder, breathing is an agreed upon necessity. A new study reveals how an emerging technique in rhinoplasty does more than improve physical appearance.

Brian J.F. Wong, MD, PhD, professor and director of the Division of Facial Plastic Surgery in the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery at the University of California, Irvine School of Medicine, has perfected a nuanced technique called the Articulated Alar Rim Graft (AARG). Designed to provide stability to the nasal structure and improves the attractiveness of the nasal tip, the technique also increases air flow.

In a study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, Facial Plastic Surgery, Wong explored the effectiveness of the AARG for improving nasal airway function.

Titled, “Functional Outcomes, Quantitative Morphometry, and Aesthetic Analysis of Articulated Alar Rim Grafts in Septorhinoplasty,” the study examined 90 patients who underwent a rhinoplasty procedure where an AARG technique was used.

“I approach cosmetic operations of the nose like a civil engineer and an architect,” said Wong. “Using the AARG technique, I am able to address deformities some patients have in their nasal tip. These deformities often prevent them from breathing properly.”

Results from the study indicate that by using the AARG technique, Wong and his team were able to make a major improvement in a person’s ability to breathe, while also improving the asthestics of the nose structure itself.

When patients seek surgical help to correct or reconstruct the nose, it is often due to the length, or the width of the nasal tip. Changing or refining the appearance of the nasal tip is a common problem, but can be a difficult to correct surgically. The AARG is a new surgical technique which corrects the nasal shape and gives it structure.

Wong and other UCI researchers have also developed a numerical system that classifies the shape of the nose, with the ultimate goal to have the tip of the nose resemble a unilateral triangle.

“We have for the first time defined a ‘number on beauty’,” said Wong, who is also a professor of biomedical engineering at UCI’s Henry Samueli School of Engineering. “The structural stability afforded by these grafts gives us a very elegant way of addressing a deformity.”

Wong has given more than 50 lectures on the AARG technique and has additional lectures scheduled in Columbia, Taiwan, Netherlands, Miami, and China.

J. Stuart Nelson on Facebook Live

Listen to Dr. J. Stuart Nelson talk about the new Prima laser and how it treats port wine stains, hemangiomas and venous malformations. He presents a powerful resource of information for families affected by these vascular birthmarks.

He also compares other lasers and answers questions that all affected families need answers to.

Dr. J. Stuart Nelson: Prima Laser Talk

Beckman Laser Institute awarded NIH “countermeasures” funding

Cyanide poisoning poses a major chemical threat, whether due to terrorism, structure fires or industrial accidents.  Developing new cyanide antidotes is critical to survival and a designated National Institutes of Health (NIH) priority.  The NIH Countermeasures Against Chemical Threats (CounterACT) program supports basic and translational research aimed at the development of improved therapeutic medical countermeasures against chemical threat agents and facilitates studies through drug development and regulatory processes.

Dr. Matthew Brenner’s research is focused on developing effective rescue countermeasures for toxic inhaled chemical threat agents. In 2019, Dr. Brenner and his collaborators were awarded a five-year “Center of Excellence” grant from the NIH National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke titled, “Advancing Novel Cyanide Countermeasures.”  This multi-site center grant, which provides more than $3.2M in annual funding to the combined sites, is administered through Harvard/Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Partners in Boston, with multiple, highly collaborative projects spanning six institutions, including Harvard, Purdue, University of Utah, University of Colorado, UC San Diego and UCI.

The University of Colorado and UCI Beckman Laser Institute & Medical Clinic makes use of novel Institute-developed photonics-based diagnostic technologies. The teams will use advanced diagnostics and imaging to monitor real-time physiological consequences of cyanide-induced injury and responses to new antidote therapies.

Dr. Brenner and his team will utilize the Institute’s research facilities.  Multiple Institute technologies, including Diffuse Optical Spectroscopy (DOS), developed in former Institute Director Dr. Bruce Tromberg’s laboratory, and Continuous Wave Near Infrared Spectroscopy (CWNIRS) will be used to assess the effects of cyanide poisoning. These technologies allow real-time monitoring of tissue oxygenation and can follow the chemical asphyxiation of cells caused by cyanide by revealing cytochrome c oxidase redox states. In addition, real-time micro-sensors for continuous tissue lactate monitoring, developed by Dr. Elliot Botvinick, will measure metabolic poison exposure consequences.

The Institute investigations will support projects and explorations at each of the other university sites and the findings will influence pharmaceutical development and metabolomics profiling for mechanistic understanding of cyanide poisoning.  This academic partnership plays a significant role in accelerating the development of countermeasures in the face of new and emerging chemical threats.

More than 170 UCI Health doctors among 2020 Physicians of Excellence in Orange Coast magazine

List includes more doctors than any other Orange County hospital, health system

More than 170 UCI Health doctors have been named to the 2020 Physicians of Excellence list published in the January 2020 edition of Orange Coast magazine, more than that of any other health system in Orange County.

The recognition is bestowed by the Orange County Medical Association, a voluntary physician organization that exists to promote the art and science of medicine, the protection of public health and the betterment of the medical profession.

The complete list includes more than 560 Orange County physicians in 75 specialties. The magazine is on newsstands now.

This year, UCI Health received an 11th consecutive top grade for patient safety from The Leapfrog Group and was listed among America’s Best Hospitals for the 19th year in a row by U.S. News & World Report. The report highlights the excellence of UCI Health programs in gynecology, No. 20 (tie), gastroenterology & GI surgery, No. 36 and geriatrics, No. 42 (tie) among similar programs nationally. The medical center is ranked No. 10 in California

UCI Health doctors practice across the region, in addition to the UCI Medical Center in Orange. Primary and specialty care locations include the Gottschalk Medical Plaza in Irvine and offices in Costa Mesa, Tustin, Yorba Linda, Orange, Placentia, Corona and Chino Hills.

In coastal Orange County, UCI Health specialty care in cancer, breast health, digestive diseases, plastic surgery, neurosurgery and dermatology is available at the Pacific Medical Plaza in Costa Mesa and Newport. Urology, executive health, behavioral health and sleep medicine services are available at the UCI Health Newport — Birch Street office, which opened in 2018.

To be eligible for OCMA recognition, physicians were required to:

  • Be certified by a member board of the American Board of Medical Specialties, a member board of the American Board of Osteopathic Medical Specialties, or an equivalency board recognized by the Medical Board of California or Osteopathic Medical Board of California
  • Be in good standing with the Medical Board of California or Osteopathic Medical Board of California
  • Maintain a primary practice in Orange County for the last five years
  • Be in practice within his/her specialty for the last five years

Physicians were required to demonstrate achievements in at least two of the following criteria: physician leadership; teaching/mentoring; medical research/scientific advances; and humanitarian service.

UCI Health comprises the clinical enterprise of the University of California, Irvine. Patients can access UCI Health at primary and specialty care offices across Orange County and at its main campus, UCI Medical Center in Orange, California. The 402-bed acute care hospital provides tertiary and quaternary care, ambulatory and specialty medical clinics, and behavioral health and rehabilitation services. UCI Medical Center features Orange County’s only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center, high-risk perinatal/neonatal program and American College of Surgeons-verified Level I adult and Level II pediatric trauma center and regional burn center. UCI Health serves a region of nearly 4 million people in Orange County, western Riverside County and southeast Los Angeles County. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

UCI Health Beckman Laser Institute & Medical Clinic Physicians of Excellence for 2019:

Kristen M. Kelly, MD

Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
Brian J. F. Wong, MD

Yama Akbari, MD
Mark J. Fisher, MD

Read full UCI Health article.

Yan Li awarded AHA Postdoctoral Fellowship

Yan Li, a fourth year UCI biomedical engineering graduate student in Professor Zhongping Chen’s laboratory was awarded a 2020 two-year American Heart Association (AHA) postdoctoral fellowship.  The research funding is helping her develop and test the integrated intravascular ultrasound/polarization-sensitive OCT device for evaluating atherosclerotic plaque.

Li, who earned a degree in electronic science and technology from Tianjin University in China, is developing a comprehensive intravascular imaging device that can identify plaque, the cause of most heart attacks, in blood vessels. Her device combines photon and ultrasound, which can obtain structure and composition of arterial tissue simultaneously, and provide a quantitative way for clinicians to identify vulnerable lesions, tailor intervention therapy and monitor disease progression.

The AHA awards predoctoral fellowships to promising graduate students whose research relates to cardiovascular function, disease and stroke or to related problems, and who intend to pursue careers aimed at improving global cardiovascular health.

Oral Cancer Screening Technology Makes Big Impact on Underserved Community

Story courtesy of Ethan Perez, UCI Beall Applied Innovation

Oral health took the main stage at a recent event at Concorde College celebrating the community partnership between the Concorde College of Dental Hygiene and Dr. Petra Wilder-Smith and her team from UC Irvine Beckman Laser Institute & Medical Clinic (BLIMC).

Among the guests were Robynn Zender, community health research representative at the UCI Institute for Clinical and Translational Science (ICTS); Dr. Wilder-Smith, director of dentistry at UCI BLIMC and professor of surgery at the UCI School of Medicine; former Sen. Janet Nguyen of the 34th district, who regularly supports health clinics hosted by Concorde College; and Dr. Arezou Goshtasbi, director of dental hygiene at Concorde College.

Held at the Garden Grove campus, the collaboration was part of a grant funded by the ICTS with which Wilder-Smith and her team developed a nonsurgical approach to identify oral cancer risk and progression in underserved populations. To achieve this, Wilder-Smith and team used advanced imaging technologies and leveraged the students and facilities at Concorde College to provide free oral cancer screenings to patients at the college’s health clinics.

In addition to screening thousands of patients and identifying those with or at high risk of developing oral cancer, Concorde College has – as a result of this collaboration – expanded its oral cancer curriculum to better prepare the next generation of hygienists for recognizing patients with oral cancer or pre-oral cancer.

“The partnership gave our students the opportunity to be more engaged in research and the importance of collaborating with other health care providers,” said Cherie Wink, instructor of dental hygiene at Concorde College and colleague of Wilder-Smith. “It was a great opportunity to be part of something that could potentially save lives.”

Wilder-Smith, who has made a career of using optics and photonics technologies to improve oral health and who has several patents to her name through UCI Beall Applied Innovation, praised the partnership’s role in helping pre-dental students at UCI.

“Working with Concorde has really added to the pre-dental experience for our students,” said Wilder-Smith. “We don’t have a dental school at UCI so the pre-dental students have to find their own way to make connections to clinical dentistry. Concorde works together with both our dental societies and makes sure the students get pre-clinical experience in helping at free clinics. I think it’s a big deal because it gets them set on the path of volunteering, of doing something for the community.”

The visit included a demonstration of the device used at the free screenings, allowing contributors and supporters to see the culmination of everyone’s hard work.

“I see the proposal, I see the reviews, we give them the money, I talk with them on the phone and I hear Petra talk about the work that she’s doing,” said Zender, who facilitated the funding of the collaboration. “But to actually come here and see the actual devices in action … it’s really rewarding.”

Learn more about UCI BLIMC’s vision of moving innovative technologies from “laboratory benchtop to patient bedside.”

Read full article in UCI Beall Applied Innovation Making Waves.

Pictured (from left to right): Kairong Lin, Robynn Zender, Dr. Petra Wilder-Smith, former Sen. Janet Nguyen, Dr. Arezou Goshtasbi, and Ryan Cheung.

Elliot Botvinick Named Entrepreneurial Leader of the Year

On May 29, 2019, Elliot Botvinick was named Entrepreneurial Leader of the Year award at the UCI Innovator Awards Ceremony held by UCI Applied Innovation at The Cove.  This award is given to innovators who have shown an enterprising spirit by transforming at least one significant innovation from the university into a market-ready product or service. The many nominees for this award included Chris Barty, Jeffrey Krichmar, Aimee Edinger, Elliot Botvinick, and Tony Givargis. Elliot Botvinick is a professor at the UCI Henry Samueli School of Engineering. He is considered to be a leader for the research and development of advanced medical devices while also knowing how to bring this research to commercialization. His current research is aimed at treating and diagnosing Type-1 diabetes, as well as standard trauma. He and his research team developed a continuous monitor that measures blood lactate, which helps to identify early signs of organ failure. All of the nominees and winners of these awards are considered to be among the best researchers in and around UCI.

Modulated Imaging Enters Growth Phase with New Name

Modulated Imaging Raises $7M in Series B Funding

Lumitron’s New Platform is Game-changing