Dr. Craig Colville, a plastic surgery specialist in Toledo, Ohio, talks about how patients can benefit from 3D imaging, educational apps, and other advances.
Toledo, Ohio (November 2014) — Dr. Craig Colville says embracing technological advances at his plastic surgery practice in Toledo, Ohio, goes a long way in helping his patients achieve their aesthetic goals, and much of that occurs long before they get to the operating room.
Dr. Colville uses 3D imaging technology and computer tablets to help patients envision their potential results during their first consultations.
“One of the best innovations at my practice is VECTRA® 3D imaging,” Dr. Colville says. “It helps me create a detailed picture of potential results, and it really lets patients understand what different procedures can do for them in a way that no amount of words ever could.”
The VECTRA imaging system takes photos of a potential patient and then uses software to transform the images and simulate how a patient could look after a treatment. It is revolutionizing aesthetic consultations for surgeries from breast augmentation to liposuction, says Dr. Colville, who was the first among Toledo, Ohio, plastic surgeons to offer the service. He uses it for a variety of cosmetic surgical procedures at his practice, but he said it’s also an excellent tool for non-surgical treatments.
“I’m very impressed with how VECTRA captures what a person will look like with fillers and BOTOX®,” he says. “It’s common for a patient to come in thinking, ‘I need a facelift,’ and then once I use VECTRA to show that person what’s possible with injectables, the whole plan changes. People are usually thrilled to see that they may not need surgery to get the results they’re after.”
Dr. Colville’s experience using VECTRA for facial rejuvenation patients has led to his being invited to make a presentation at the American-Brazilian Aesthetic Meeting™ in February. At the conference, which hosts American and international aesthetic experts, Dr. Colville is scheduled to make a presentation titled “3D Imaging in Facial Injections.”
VECTRA is part of a broader trend in medicine of the growing use of interactive programs, Web portals, and mobile apps to help patients understand procedures.
A Wall Street Journal article published earlier this month highlighted this trend, saying that while the doctor-patient discussion about surgical procedures remains paramount, patients who use tutorials and other new technology “show a much better understanding and ask the right questions.”
Dr. Colville, who also uses iPads during consultations instead of heavy binders to let patients flip through before-and-after photos, says technology is really changing the way patients experience plastic surgery.
“In many circumstances outside my practice, technology can seem to limit communication,” he says. “But 3D imaging, mobile websites, iPads, and other advances help me build an even stronger connection with patients. These tools help patients feel empowered, which improves the whole process and leads to higher patient satisfaction with the outcomes and overall.”