Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Tax Bites Man: Thoughts from Plastic Surgeon Dr. Brueck

There used to be a saying among newspaper editors, "When a dog bites a man, that's not news. But when a man bites a dog, that's news!"

So I guess it isn't news when a new tax takes a bite out of our lifestyle. But when a tax is rescinded, or threatened but not enacted, that's news!

So the news today is that the threatened tax on cosmetic filler treatments, such as Botox, has been taken of the Congressional table - for the moment anyway. It has been replaced by a proposed tax on tanning salons.

I suppose we should be grateful, but.... it is unsettling to be happy about an unnecessary tax just because it doesn't have immediate impact on us

We were spared for the time being, but America will be crippled by this new “health” bill that will increase taxes, deficits and premiums for everybody. I guess the plunderers of Washington will continue. They are like crack addicts; they can’t get enough of new taxes. Soon, November 2010 will be here, and in the end we may have the final say.

And, if you are considering a filler or botox treatment, you may want to schedule it soon. Who knows when the tax vampires will be around again with their BoTAX.

Give me a call at 239-939-5233 to talk about fillers, skin care and any thing cosmetic, including chin, neck, and face lifts. Or check out my web site, which is filled with interesting nformation about cosmetic plastic surgery subjects.

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Friday, December 18, 2009

Dr. Brueck -Plastic Surgeon is back on the job


I like that word “back”- somehow it resonates with me.

After my last experience with my “back” surgery in mid-July, I felt I was fighting my way “back” and doing well until my recent episode. I was “back” to work when, WHAM, I was hit with another bout of “back” pain and, wow, was this unbelievable! On a scale of a 1 to 10 it was a 12!!

So “back” to the hospital. This time I was admitted and this time I was in a chauffeur driven limousine, compliments of Lee County EMS. I was in for eight days for “back” pain control and then underwent 7 hours of “back” surgery which consisted of spinal fusion.

I was hospitalized following my “back” surgery for another 6 days. Post-operatively, I was doing well until I developed blood clots in my leg. Oh well - so it goes - but now I’m “back” once again with much less pain and, boy, how good it is to return to work.

I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank all of you for your prayers and cards because they meant a lot to me. It’s great to be “back”.

PS: I am doing just as the doctor ordered. I’m a very understanding and compliant patient. God bless and thank you all.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

What's next? DIY Appendix Removal? - Plastic Surgery on TV

The latest proposals for TV reality shows are do-it-yourselfers who have performed cosmetic surgery or injected Botox on themselves. How stupid can they get? First, any cosmetic procedure, surgical or non-surgical, entails some risk.

Sorry. That is just the way it is.

That's why you are urged to consult with a Board Certified plastic surgeon, not just any doctor, not just any surgeon and not just any surgeon that is Board Certified in another specialty, but not cosmetic plastic surgery.
When you trust someone to make changes in how you look, you want to make sure that person knows what he or she is doing and that they are doing what they know. Which brings us to "amateur night in RealityTV-Land".

Imagine someone actually injecting Botox or fillers in their own face! We know they have no training. They can easily make a mistake. They don't know what to do when they
do make a mistake. Their physical conditions probably are not sterile, with extremely high risk of infection. Presumably, the person has a mirror to look in while they put their appearance at risk. But, do they realize that a mirror doesn't reflect one's true appearance, the way others see us.? It reverses features. That's why we so often look different in photographs than we think we look from peering in the mirror. But wait a minute. I'm discusssing this as if it was real. How silly. This can't possibly be real. It's too absurd. Really. So if you know anyone considering 15 minutes of fame by self-administered filler injections on TV, be sure they have a qualified, Board Certified plastic surgeon lined up to repair the damage.

Assuming, of course, that it can be repaired.

PS: Attorneys have an expression that any lawyer who represents himself in court has a fool for a client. Seems there is a parallel here.
(Ed: Dr. Robert J. Brueck, MD, FACS, is Board Certified in plastic surgery, practicing in Fort Myers and Cape Coral, FL. He has strong opinions about cosmetic procedures, who should have them and who should do them.
For more information on the subject, visit Dr. Brueck's web site at

Not ANOTHER Tax? Aren't you taxed enough?

(Ed: Dr. Robert J. Brueck, MD FACS of Fort Myers and Cape Coral FL , feels compelled to speak his piece about the new proposed tax of 5% on cosmetic surgery. His comments follow.)

What a total sham and disgrace this whole concept and idea is.

If our legislators would spend as much time thinking about cost reduction and cutting expenses as they do on taxing us into the eternal abyss with new and creative taxes, we would be much better off. When and where will it finally end?

This administration has created a deficit in one year equal to the deficit in all of Bush’s last 4 years. The spending is totally outrageous and out of control and is creating an enormous Armageddon for America.

I read where the city government of Pittsburgh wants to TAX the tuition paid by all students at universities within the city limits of Pittsburgh. This would raise approximately 60 million dollars a year and go to reduce the pension costs and obligations of city employees!

Did they ever think for one second that these benefit packages and wage structures were out of line and unsustainable? Maybe they should cut benefits and salaries and not create new taxes.

They now want to tax the buying and selling of stocks, but ONLY 0.25% FOR NOW. It’s like a state income tax that the legislators sell to the citizens of a state, with the promise that it will never go above 1.5% and then 5 to 10 years later it’s up to 4, 5 or 6%.

The bottom line is that POLITICIANS cannot be trusted with our money. End of discussion.

In keeping with the tax on cosmetic surgery and the push for health care "reform", we are told that $500 million will come from cuts and cost savings in Medicare expenditures and this will help offset the increased cost of health care spending, so that it will be “budget neutral”.

These are the same people that said a trillion dollar stimulus, ie: pork barrel, bill will keep unemployment under 8% and create 3.5 million new jobs. The result a year later is that we’ve lost 3 million jobs on top of the 3.5 million we were promised which creates a deficit of 6.5 million jobs. Unemployment is at 10% and will probably go higher. In reality, it is much higher because so many people have just thrown their hands in the air and said, "enough is enough.”

The administration claims that there is this much waste in Medicare and my response is simply, "where the was the government 2, 5, or even 10 years ago that allowed hundreds of billions of dollars of waste to occur?" These are the same people who want to come now and control 17% of our gross national product. And of course their response is, if we have this red ink, these loses, this fraud, this embezzlement, all we have to do is tax the people just a little bit more.

The Botox cosmetic tax will be broad ranging, ie: ANY cosmetic procedure, Botox, fillers, dental caps, teeth whitening, braces, etc. the list is endless. This tax is also discriminatory because 90% of cosmetic procedures are performed on women.

These are not sin taxes like cigarettes, which place a tremendous burden on the health care system. This is clearly a tax on the middle class who earn $30 to $60 thousand a year. According to The American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 60% of all cosmetic procedures are from this income group.


This increased cost may also cause some people to risk cosmetic procedures overseas such as Costa Rica and other areas of the Caribbean and around the world. I think most plastic surgeons have seen the results of these people who have gone offshore to “save money”. This will greatly increase their risks.

This tax will also create a new level of bureaucracy to enforce and collect this “new tax”. A while back New Jersey tried this approach and it was a nightmare and total failure. When ,oh when, will we ever, ever learn.

Each and every day my anger grows when I see our government slowly, in unrelenting fashion; erode our individual rights and freedoms.



Dr. Brueck is a Board Certified plastic surgeon practicing in Fort Myers and Cape Coral, FL. For more information about his specialties, please visit his web site at Beauty-by-Brueck.com. To schedule a free consultation with Dr. Brueck, please call Judy at 239-939-5233

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WRINKLE CREAMS - MIRACLE DEVICES? More hype than happening.

(Ed: As a Board Certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Robert J. Brueck, MD, FACS, is frequently asked by people he meets or has free consultations with if there is ANY substance to the claims advertisers make about "Miracle Wrinkle Creams and Devices." Here is Dr. Brueck's response, from a recent article he wrote:)

"I am so amazed how people are inundated with infomercials about beauty products that supposedly turn back the clock.

I remember recently seeing one that related to the 'neck/exerciser'.

I don’t know the exact name or title of this product, but you put this product on your chin and the other end goes up against your neck and you go up and down, up and down like you are bobbing for apples in a pool of water and after 10 to 15 years of doing this 3 or 4 times a day you have a beautiful more youthful neck line. And it’s only $29.95 plus shipping and handling and if you act now we will throw in at no extra charge our new miracle neck cream so you too can have a softer, more youthful neck. I think you get the gist of this.

Then I get an occasional patient who comes into the office to see me and asks me about this new miracle breast cream that is supposed to give you fuller, more youthful breasts. People buy them because they are cheap and people are desperate.

Sad but true, they don’t work.

Consumer reports in their 2009 addition recently reported on “winkle creams”. The sense of the article is simple, save your money.

The priciest cream tested was Perricone MD for $95. It was costlier than the over-the-counter drugstore brands. But notice, they put the MD in there... ah that must mean it works, it’s tested, it’s MD approved.

Sorry folks it doesn’t!

So the bottom line is save your money, go to Vegas, roll the dice, have some fun and, if you are lucky, you may come back a few dollars richer."

Dr. Brueck is Board Certified in Plastic Surgery and discusses the various procedures available at his Fort Myers - Cape Coral, FL in his web site at Beauty-by-Brueck.com.

You're invited to visit the web site or arrange for your own private, no charge consultation by calling 239-939-5233. If you would prefer to speak with a woman first, ask for Judy. Thank you.

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