Page 1

MAY/JUNE 2013

ALL ABOUT

Med SpaS sEREniTY CREEK MEd sPA:

TIPS fRoM a PRo: FEELing OVERWhELMEd? here’s a solution from entrepreneur columnist Alex Charfen

Formula of Beauty and Wellness With immeasurable Passion p.xx

WhAT YOU shOULd KnOW ABOUT MEd sPAs MEdiCAL FACiALs dO’s And dOn’Ts


Surprisingly more than what you’d expect from a dental visit

4200 North Lamar, Suite 145 (next to Uchiko) Austin, Texas 512.459.5437 / www.drmoossy.com


Table of conTenTs mAY/June 2013

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A u s t i n MD m A g A z i n e mAY/June 2013

CO-OWNER(S):

angela strickland & aman Bandali CHIEF MARKETING OFFICER:

todd Johnston MARKETING AND EVENTS DIRECTOR:

Martha Morales ART DIRECTOR:

andrius krasuckas EDITORIAL ASSISTANT:

ariel Min EDITORIAL INTERN:

lauren Bolado PHOTOGRAPHY INTERN:

adnan khalid CONTRIBUTING WRITERS:

profiles

ariel Min, Jody Marmel, tim valderrama, shelley Mcgahey, alex winkelman, todd Johnston, Meredith davis, alex charfen, Joy Miller, christine lemaire, Joseph villarreal, samantha davidson.

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PHOTOGRAPHERS:

08 CoVer story

gregg cestaro, steve dement, Jessica attie, ruben Morales, Jared tennant.

here’s a sneak peek at our exclusive interview with actress and model gena lee nolin

10 FeAture serenity creek Med spa the secret formula to beauty and wellness

52 seArsuCker www.austinMdmagazine.com

Bravo tv’s ‘top chef ’ finalist & aBc’s ‘the taste’ victor chef opens restaurant in downtown austin

deparTmenTs 16 Austin Md Fitness 20 Austin Md MediCAl 26, 46-51 Austin Md Business 32 Austin Md eVents 36 Austin Md BeAuty 44 Q&A ColuMn 52 Austin Md Food 4

A u s t i n MD m A g A z i n e . c o m

for advertising and/or editorial information,

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please call 512.506.1248 or email info@austinMdmagazine.com.

copyright © by austinMdmagazine. all rights reserved. reproduction without the expressed written permission of the publisher is prohibited.


TRIAL LAWYERS

Personal Injury / Criminal Law / Family Law / DWI Defense Discrete Representation 512.474.1499

1007 E. 7th Street / Austin, TX 78702 www.moralesnavarrete.com www.texasdwidedefense.com JAIL RELEASES AVAILABLE / SE HABLA ESPANOL


publisher’s Letter

MAY/JUNE 2013 MEET OUR TEAM

I

t’s all about your health! We are so proud to launch a new version of the magazine as we are moving forward with new ideas and vision as an invaluable resource here in Austin, Texas. We’re striving to facilitate the flow of useful information about health, wellness and fitness to our readers in order to encourage healthy living among our community. As a team, we will work to create interesting and useful articles, bringing to the people of Austin cutting-edge ideas and innovations in health and business. It is our hope that readers find as much enjoyment in reading and learning from Austin MD, as we have in creating it. We are very excited about our new venture and the growth we are about to experience. We have a launch party coming up to introduce the newly branded magazine to the city on May 23rd at the Wet Deck of W Hotel Austin, where we will focus on informing our readers more clearly about our goals and passion in health and in business. We cannot thank our supporters and the wonderful staff enough for being such an indispensable cornerstone to this launch.

Co-Owner(s): Angela Strickland & Aman Bandali

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Angela Strickland Co-Owner

Aman Bandali Co-Owner

angela@austinmdmagazine.com

aman@austinmdmagazine.com

Martha Morales Marketing and Events Director

Todd Johnston Chief Marketing Officer

martha@austinmdmagazine.com

todd@austinmdmagazine.com

Ariel Min Editorial Assistant

Andrius Krasuckas Art Director

ariel@austinmdmagazine.com

andrius@austinmdmagazine.com

Deann Hoeft freelance photographer

Lauren Bolado Editorial Intern lauren@austinmdmagazine.com


Business cover story

Taking the Sexy Back Meet Gena Lee Nolin, former actress and model who has battled against thyroid disease and came out as a strong advocate. Writer: Ariel Min

G

ena Lee Nolin, as famous as she is for her identity as a strong and sexy model, suffered greatly from undiagnosed thyroid disease that left her feeling anything but beautiful. The former Baywatch star and model has been sharing her struggles with the disease and her ongoing treatment. Gena now encourages others through her advocacy. Nolin has come out as a survivor and a strong advocate for regular thyroid gland checks and blood tests. She created a Facebook page called “Thyroid Sexy” in July 2011 for people to “share struggles and triumphs, knowledge and hope.” Since then, the page has received over 27,000 likes and has been acting as a good source of information and encouragement for those who are suffering from thyroid disease. Nolin has written a book titled “Beautiful Inside & Out” with a New York Times bestseller Mary J.

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Shomon, about conquering thyroid disease with a new lifestyle, to be released in early October 2013. It includes unpublished photos of Nolin at the height of her illness, honest accounts of her fight with the disease, and advice from experts. These stories and illustrations are meant to inspire and help her readers to proactively check for symptoms, and seek treatment to restore balanced hormones and solve beauty challenges. In our next issue, we will dive deeper into her battle with the disease, and what brought her to advocate so actively for thyroid awareness in an Austin M.D. exclusive interview with Todd Johnston.

I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s & Hypothyroidism in 2009! What a journey it’s been Photos by Jessica Attie St. Edward’s University Marketing


When I read some of the comments on “Thyroid Sexy,” I’m speechless. I get very emotional thinking about how I may have helped someone. I just hope they pass it on and

help someone else. What is Thyroid Disease? First of all, the thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland located in the front area of the neck. The gland’s main job is to produce thyroid hormones, which regulate your body’s metabolism, growth and other important functions. It takes orders from the pituitary gland, which corresponds with the hypothalamus in the brain. It’s plays a vital role in communicating with hormones all throughout the body. Variations of the hormones cause different disorders that can range in severity from simply an enlarged gland that doesn’t necessarily require medical treatment to lifethreatening cancer. Problems with the thyroid are separated into two main categories: hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism. Hyperthyroidism is the overproduction of hormones, and can cause several secondary conditions including: Grave’s disease, toxic adenomas, subacute thyroiditis and pituitary gland malfunctions. Hypothyroidism is the exact opposite: underproduction of thyroid hormones. There are many causes of hypothyroidism including: Hashimoto’s, removal of the thyroid gland, excessive exposure to iodide and lithium medications.

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business FeAture

injectionist Alicia long spends time understanding the patients ideal look

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Serenity Creek Med

Spa: Sharing Their Formula of Beauty and Wellness With Immeasurable Passion Writer: Jody Marmel Phtogr apher: Gregg Cestaro

T

here is nothing quite like taking some quality time for yourself and indulging in the magical aesthetic world of enhancing your beauty. While this treat may seem unreachable for many due to budget constraints, Serenity Creek Med Spa has affordable options for everyone. Add in the expertise of each staff member, the comforting surroundings, the compassionate staff, the patient oriented philosophies, and the Serenity Creek Med Spa equation is as close to “perfect” in both the experience and the results. As each patient is looking for their unique outcome, the Serenity Creek staff custom tailors the best treatment on an individual basis to ensure that you achieve what you yearn for. And after talking with several patients, they described their visits with stunning smiles of satisfaction. Vicki Hansen, the senior medical aesthetician and office manager at Serenity Creek, explained, “there are always positive results with each patient. This is due to a combination of factors that make what we specialize in amazing.” Hansen continued to explain that the spa offers individualized choices for different types of patients. “We listen to each one so we know exactly what the patient wants. Taking the time to listen makes a big difference in patient satisfaction and most times we see that first time patient again and again,” she said. Serenity Creek keeps receiving rave reviews and has become a “must have-must do” for women and men alike throughout Austin and beyond the city limits, according to the customers.

Beth F. detailed her experience as a patient and loyal advocate, explaining how knowledgeable, helpful and down-to-earth the staff at Serenity Creek was. “Any and all of my fears about going to a medical spa vanished when I visited Serenity Creek. In other spas or salons, I have felt out of place or judged and felt as if they were only pushing products and services. The Serenity team has opened their arms to me with humor and has put me at ease with an expertise that I trust,” she said. From her experience, Beth F. was convinced that beauty and wellness should be combined in order to reach a high quality of life. Alicia Long, the injection specialist at Serenity Creek is currently attending Austin Community College working on her Nursing degree, specializes in performing all injectables, including Botox, Juvederm, Radiesse, and Artefill. “I can do tons of Botox injections in one day because the appointments are approximately 30 minutes, and the patient can go right back to work after seeing us. While I also do a great deal of fillers, the appointments are a bit longer - 1 hour and due to slight swelling for a few hours, patients want to go back home for the duration of the day,” she said. “As the medical aesthetician, it is my job to help each patient with the issue or concern they want to enhance, fix or change. I work with each patient to ensure that the products, services and treatments are giving them the results they expect and deserve. We all place an important

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business FeAture

dr Martens and his staff have excellent teamwork and positive attitude

value on educating each and every patient as best we can and give them options.” Hansen clarified that the she and her staff make recommendations to patients what they think is the best for them, that they are not salespeople. Patient Priscilla O. feels lucky to have met Vicki Hansen four years ago at a nail salon while she was actively looking for an aesthetician. “I immediately felt a connection with her and called and made an appointment the following week,” she said excitedly, “the entire staff makes me feel as if I’m their only customer and share my concerns about my skin looking the very best. My profession requires me to frequently speak before groups and I need and want to look as attractive as possible. I’ve had many procedures over the years such as peels, microdermabrasion and laser due to acne scarring and sun damage. Vicki and Alicia have worked with me and offered services that have taken several years off my appearance. My skin is in the best health and looks better than it has before.” Other patients echoed what Beth F. and Priscilla O. said, emphasizing that they like the friendliness and the professionalism of the staff at Serenity Creek. The recurring praise was that the staff are very

knowledgeable with new products and services, and that they recommend good products without giving a ‘sales pitch’. Meredith Davis, founder of Austin Beauty Guide, read about Serenity Creek in an article and kept hearing about this beautiful new med spa. “I was intrigued by all the press the spa was getting so I inquired about the services offered. The fi rst appointment I went in for was a facial and microdermabrasion with Vicki and she was extremely knowledgeable,” Davis said, “it was my fi rst micro, so she explained everything thoroughly. And she was so much fun to talk to! I enjoyed my experience so much that I decided to come back for other treatments.” Patient care coordinator Sarah McCullough noted that even during the hectic times at Open Houses, they work together to accommodate every patient and guest. “In order for our day to day responsibilities to run smoothly, we all need to work together to ensure that everything goes well. Our goal is to make every patient happy with their treatment and experience at Serenity Creek.” Dr. Thomas Martens is the head doctor of Serenity Creek. He is a member of the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery and a physician with over 15 years of specialized experience. He also praised the

“ourmain Goal

is ThaT The paTienT has The besT experience possible”

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excellent staff saying, “these ladies are the foundation to Serenity Creek; they are the ones that all of our patients interact with.” Dr. Martens is also the Medical Director for Union Treatment Centers, where he ends up spending much time at. “I am confident in our staff and their passion and determination behind Serenity Creek. They are all leaders in their field and provide a superb support network for our patients. This is what makes us successful,” Martens said. Dr. Martens emphasizes that Serenity Creek does complimentary consultations for every service and treatment they provide to give each patient the opportunity to discuss their aesthetic questions, concerns and options to get to where they want and deserve to be. If you are looking to reverse the signs of aging, rejuvenate or enhance your appearance from a personable, luxurious medical spa, Serenity Creek Med Spa is a great place to visit. “The aesthetic/cosmetic industry is a luxurious business and our patients deserve to be treated like VIPs. We all do our best to treat them like that without paying the VIP price. I am honored to have such a wonderful team,” he said.

“Every treatment

I’ve had has been outstanding and I’m always thinking about what I could do next” For More Information: -call 512-419-0303 or Visit www.serenitycreek.com A u s t i n MD m a g a z i n e . c o m

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Fitness

Yoga A Day Keeps the Doctor Away Here’s a reminder of how yoga can benefit our bodies in so many ways. BY Ariel Min

S

ome practice yoga for religious or spiritual reasons. Some use it strictly as an exercising method. Some call it a necessity in your daily exercise routine. Whichever motivation people may have, yoga has become a popular trend around the country, and Austin is no stranger to this movement either. Within the past few years, the yoga community in central Austin has grown tremendously, according to the establishment dates of many popular studios. So how has yoga gained so much popularity, and how has it improved our lifestyle? Yoga was born in India more than 5,000 years ago during the period

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of India’s “Golden Age” that was best known for peace and blessings. It is believed to have started for seekers of the “Eternal Truth,” as a spiritual mind strengthening movement. So if yoga started as a spiritual and mind exercise, you may be wondering how exactly yoga has benefited practitioners physically. General health benefits of yoga include strengthened core, increase in flexibility, better posture, and enhanced concentration, according to Web MD. Many yoga practices use meditation technique to “clear your mind” and relax while focusing completely on breathing and being mindful of your body. Yoga also helps athletes in various ways by helping them

images from Shutterstock


understand their bodies, according to Women’s Health magazine. You get to learn where your body is weak, strong, tight, or flexible, which will be helpful for enhancing your overall performance. There are many types of yoga that are popular in the United States, each focusing on different aspects of the movements. The most widely practiced styles include: Hatha, Vinyasa, Ashtanga, Iyengar, and Bikram.

Yoga benefi ts both the mind and body

hatha & Vinyasa Hatha and Vinyasa are slow-paced, and they focus on breathing and meditating. It mainly revolves around sun salutation, a series of 12 breath-synchronized poses. They are recommended widely for beginners to be familiarized with basic poses and movements. Ashtanga yoga is known to be more suited for anyone who’d consider themselves in the intermediate level, since it focuses on eight specific limbs with fast-paced movements with push-ups and lunges. It’s a form of power yoga, known to help with weight loss and strengthening.

iyengar Iyengar yoga was invented by a world-renowned yoga practitioner Yogacharya B.K.S. Iyengar. According to Austin’s Clear Spring studio, which specializes completely on Iyengar yoga, this method enables recovery from body aches and pains that come from incorrect postures, habits, stress and injury. Iyengar works on body alignment that disciplines “internalization of the senses, steadiness of concentration, subtlety of understanding, and the discipline of an ethical practice.”

BikraM (hot yoga)

“benefits of yoGa:

sTrengThened core, increase in flexibiliTy, beTTer posTure, and enhanced concenTraTion”

Bikram, as you may already know, is popularized as hot yoga - practiced in a 95 to 100 degree room. Its purpose is to flush out toxins from your body while deeply stretching and loosening your muscles. Of course, it includes intense sweating and breathing exercises that might not be best fit for everyone. It is important to try out all the different styles of yoga and find the one that fits you the best, according to the type and pattern of your body. Despite the abundant health benefits of yoga, it’s also important to weigh the risks before jumping into the exercise. The best advice would be to talk to your doctor and yoga instructor if you have specific health problems or physical concerns. Some general risks and injuries involve straining and overstretching of the neck, shoulders, spine, knees and wrists, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Also, certain poses can increase risks of injury if

you have high or low blood pressure, back problems, serious osteoporosis, and obesity. A report from KVUE Austin also noted recently that men are more prone to serious yoga injuries, especially in the joints, because they tend to practice it more intensely with a competitive edge.

yoga scene in austin

How can you get more involved with yoga in Austin? You can start off with visiting the vast number of yoga studios that are available in the city and choosing the right one for you. In addition to many Western yoga studios, there are others that offer “specialty” yoga. One example would be Antigravity Austin. It strictly offers AntiGravity® yoga, which mingles artistic sports and aerial arts with the consciousness training of yoga. This form of yoga is practiced while you are literally hanging from the ceiling with hammocks, three feet off the ground. Lastly, this one’s for all the enthusiasts: the 2013 Austin Yoga Conference will be held on May 11-12 at the Palmer Events Center, where you can attend workshops and classes with experts.

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Fitness

GLUTEN: Bad for your waistline? Many people’s health and diet are being affected by an intolerance they don’t realize they have. by Tim Valderrama

T

oday Americans are realizing that a diet of fast food and soda may lead to heart disease and diabetes. What they don’t know is there is another offender in the typical American diet that most people would never suspect to be causing them a problem. Gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye, barley, kamut, spelt, and oats, can be bad for your waistline and your health. Gluten is a major component of most breads, pastas, flour tortillas, and the majority of processed foods such as crackers and cookies. Gluten is the part of

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these foods that makes the dough light and fluffy, yet still stick together. The most dangerous aspect to gluten is that the majority of people who are gluten sensitive do not even suspect it to be a problem. For those who are sensitive, gluten can be the hidden culprit in a multitude of problems. Evidence has shown inflammatory bowel disease, multiple sclerosis, depression, muscle and joint pain, neuropathy, osteoporosis, canker sores, migraines, autism, auto-immune disease, chronic fatigue, and rheumatoid arthritis are just a few of the health prob-

images from Shutterstock, tim Valderrama photo by Steve Dement


The most dangerous aspect to gluten is that the majority of people who are gluten sensitive do not even suspect it to be a problem.

Tim Valderrama The CEO and fitness expert of Austin Executive Fitness, has been in the fitness industry for the past 15 years. Tim graduated from Texas State University with a degree in Exercise Science. He has be featured in Austin Fit Magazine as one of the Top trainers in 2010 and 2011. He is a fitness expert for National Academy of Sports Medicine and works on various case studies. With more than 10,000 hours dedicated to personal training, he constantly stays busy working with Austin top executives by helping them channel their stress through proper nutrition & exercise.

Foods Gluten is hiding in:

• Ale, beer,

and lagery

• 2012 Austin

Fittest Fitness Pro Contender, 2011 Fittest Fitness Pro Contender

• Cereals (breakfast) –

i.e. Weetabix, All Bran, Cornflakes (contains malt flavoring),

• 2011 Austin Fit

Magazine Best Trainers, 2010 Austin Fit Magazine Top 10 Trainers

• 2011 Nasm Subject

• Breading

Matter Expertise, 2012 Expertise academic-focused programs

• Brown rice syrup

• Sauces • Soup base • Croutons • Stuffing • Candy • Luncheon meats • Soy sauce • Pizza

lems commonly caused by gluten sensitivity. It is probably beneficial to anyone suffering from a chronic condition to rule out whether or not gluten sensitivity is a contributing factor. If gluten is the underlying problem the good news is it is 100% avoidable! Just cut gluten containing products out of your diet. Gluten sensitivity is an under-diagnosed cause of many chronic medical conditions. For anyone who is suffering from fatigue, chronic muscle or joint pain, digestive problems, skin issues, any of the other conditions mentioned earlier in this

article, or anyone who is simply interested in improving their health and wellness, a six-week trial period of cutting gluten out of your diet to see how you feel can tell a lot about your gluten tolerance level and sensitivity. Processed foods containing gluten are also a contributing factor for weight gain. By substituting these processed foods for fresh foods as part of a gluten free diet, many individuals lose weight. I recommend a strong focus on a whole foods diet including plenty of whole grains, healthy proteins, fresh fruits and vegetables.

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MEDICAL

S c o tt & W h i t e

Hospital Innovative Procedure Provides Reflux Relief

New surgical option addresses source of reflux; reduces symptoms and need for medication. SPECIAL CONTRIBUTION TO AUSTIN MD MAGAZINE

M

ore than 60 million Americans experience heartburn at least once a month, and some studies suggest that more than 15 million Americans experience heartburn symptoms every day. General Surgeon F. Paul Buckley III, MD, at Scott & White Hospital – Round Rock, was the first in central Texas are to use the LINX Reflux Management System, a device recently approved by the FDA, on two patients. The patients were suffering from debilitating Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), a chronic disease allowing gastric fluid to reflux into the esophagus. Nationally, Scott & White Healthcare - Round Rock is one of the few centers that perform this procedure. The lower esophageal sphincter (LES), which sits at the entrance of the stomach, usually opens and closes as soon as food passes through it. If the LES is not completely closed, acid from the stomach is able to pass through it into the esophagus. This can cause burning in the chest, commonly known as heartburn. Chronic heartburn, at least twice a week or more, is a symptom of acid reflux disease, also known as Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD). Common risk factors contributing to GERD include eating large meals, laying down after a meal, obesity, snacking close to bedtime, certain foods or beverages such as citrus, tomato, chocolate, mint, alcoholic beverages, tea/coffee or carbonated drinks. “For the first time, patients in the central Texas region have access to relief from their reflux disease through this minimally-invasive pro-

cedure which is performed laparoscopically,” said Dr. Buckley, who serves as director of the Division of General Surgery and Surgical Director of the Heartburn and Acid Reflux Center (HARC) at the facility. “While medications remain a popular choice for GERD sufferers, they often don’t control all of the symptoms of GERD, have potential side-effects and can be costly. The device offers a new and innovative alternative to traditional surgery and has excellent results,” he said. “We’re excited to offer this treatment option for patients who are appropriate candidates as it represents yet another example of our commitment to providing the highest quality patient care for local and regional residents,” said Melvin Lau, MD, Gastroenterologist and Medical Director of the HARC. “This device is implanted in the lower esophageal sphincter. A magnetic beaded bracelet is placed around the esophagus where it joins the stomach. It opens and closes with normal swallowing, but provides enough pressure to prevent acid-reflux,” said Dr. Buckley. A study published in the February issue of the New England Journal of Medicine reported that 93 percent of patients that underwent the LINX procedure reported a significant decrease in the need for medication, with 100 percent reporting the elimination of severe regurgitation. “This new advancement revolutionizes the surgical treatment of reflux disease,” said Dr. Buckley. “I believe that we will improve the overall quality of life for our patients suffering from GERD through this less invasive surgical option.”

FMI: For more information on the Heartburn and Acid Reflux Center at Scott & White – Round Rock, please visit heartburn.sw.org or call 512-509-GERD. The HARC has a unique comprehensive, multidisciplinary approach for the diagnosis and treatment of acid reflux, combining skilled physicians and the latest technology to provide effective solutions for the patient.

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image from Shutterstock


MEDICAL

Dr. Van Roekel’s first priority is making patients feel comfortable during their emergencies. SPECIAL CONTRIBUTION TO AUSTIN MD MAGAZINE

T

he word emergency doesn’t scare him. Dr. Stephen Van Roekel knew he wanted to practice emergency medicine after witnessing a fatal bus accident in college. Dr. Stephen Van Roekel, Facility Medical Director of First Choice Emergency Room’s newest location in the Arboretum, works hard to make patients feel comfortable during emergency situations. “I’m a big believer in Magic Johnson’s quote: ‘Attitude is everything’”, explained Dr. Van Roekel. Growing up with multiple doctors in the family, Dr. Van Roekel realized early on he wanted to follow in their footsteps. After graduating from Michigan State University, where he played forward on the men’s basketball team, Dr. Van Roekel received his medical education at Des Moines University. He completed his emergency medicine residency at the University of Louisville, and is now a fellow of the both the American College of Emergency Physicians and the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. In 2002, Dr. Van Roekel moved to Houston to

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IN CASE OF

EMERGENCY practice emergency medicine within the Memorial and Methodist hospital systems, as well as Houston Northwest and Cypress Fairbanks Medical Centers. In 2010, he joined the First Choice ER team and accepted an opportunity to move to Austin. “I jumped at the chance to move to Austin, everyone is so inviting and I feel more relaxed,” he said. Earlier this year, he was named the Facility Medical Director of First Choice ER’s Arboretum location. Different from urgent care clinics, First Choice ER is a true emergency room; open 24 hours, 7 days per week and staffed exclusively with board-certified emergency physicians and emergency trained registered nurses. The facilities are equipped with state of the art diagnostic technology, including CT scanners, ultrasound machines, digital x-rays and on-site COLA & CLIA accredited laboratories to handle emergency needs on the spot. First Choice Emergency Room currently has 17 facilities: 5 in DFW, 9 in Houston, 2 in Austin (Arboretum and Pflugerville) and 1 in Colorado Springs.

Dr. Van Roekel’

photos by GREGG CESTARO and Shutterstock


TREATING ALL TYPES OF PAIN SINCE 2006

CONTROL THE PAIN. LIVE BETTER

Now 4 convenient locations in Austin, New Braunfels, San Antonio and San Marcos

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4613 Bee Caves Road, Suite 104 • Austin, Texas 78746 Toll Free 877.755.2244 Telephone 512.732.2400

cedarspringsaustin.com


Business MEDICAL

The State of Private Insur ance and

Mental Health

Does having insurance guarantee mental health coverage?

A

fter the recent tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut, Mental Illness has been thrust into the national spotlight with most Americans asking, “Why?” and “How?” While the “Why?” may take years to understand the “How?” has led to the exposure of an issue many have known for far too long: the treatment options for those who battle mental illness is severely handicapped by inadequate insurance coverage. Obviously there are additional issues which affect treatment such as uninsured patients, state funded programs, mental health professionals who do not accept insurance, and of course, private insurance itself. The insurance industry, according to a report by advocacy group Health Care for America Now (HCAN), in 2009 boasted a 56% increase in profits while the very same year 2.7 million Americans lost their private insurance coverage. The question health care professionals, patients, loved ones and the American public should ask is: “Does having insurance guarantee mental health coverage?” Most of those who work in the mental health field or who have dealt with mental health issues know with certainty the answer to the above question is “No.” When the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act passed in 2008, many rejoiced at the idea of equal benefits for

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BY Shelley McGahey

medical and mental health care. The relief was short lived, however, when many realized that the parity, though mandatory for employers with more than 50 employees who already offered mental health benefits, didn’t require employers to cover mental health. And employers who could prove this change would negatively affect their profits by 2% initially and 1% yearly thereafter could then be exempt from the law altogether. Fast forward five years later, and the final rules on how states will enforce this parity are still unavailable according to Pamela Hyde, administrator of the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. And with the Affordable Care Act (ACA) upon us for 2014, many insurance companies are attempting to write new policies without a clear guideline on what should and shouldn’t be covered. There are currently 140 million Americans who receive health insurance from organizations with greater than 50 employees. Add in the 30.4 million Americans who will now be eligible under the ACA in 2014 (an estimated 10 million will have undiagnosed mental illness) into a system which is currently in disarray, and one can understand the frustration and fear those who require treatment face.

images from Shutterstock


what is in writinG

is noT alWays WhaT is folloWed and The process To appeal a denial of care is cosTly, Time consuming and sTressful. Given the remission and relapse rate of mental illness, private insurance companies have found a way to maintain control and limit treatment to despite the continued need. Some plans offer coverage for inpatient or outpatient level of care and do not cover residential and partial hospitalization even if the treating clinician recommends the non-covered level of care. Other plans will limit the number of visits per year to see a psychiatrist or counselor and might even limit the number of days a person can stay in the hospital or a day treatment program. Insurance companies pride themselves on disclaimers such as “benefit quote doesn’t guarantee services” or “authorization doesn’t guarantee payment” or there is no “medical necessity.” Even if a insurance plan has unlimited days, dollar maximums or benefit amounts, the insurance company can still decide a person no longer meets medical criteria and deny continued coverage. Instead, a lower, more “cost efficient,” level of care is authorized despite the person’s treating clinician’s recommendation. Based on one’s diagnosis, the coverage guidelines are posted on the insurer’s website and available to the consumer. However, what is in writing is not always what is followed and the process to appeal a denial of care is costly, time consuming and stressful. More times than not, the patient cannot afford the out of pocket expenses of this fight and will settle for the lower level because it is covered by their plan. Despite the roadblocks and barriers put forth by private insurance, the American people are smart. The more questions we ask, the more accountability we demand FMi: (For more information): Shelley McGahey is the Case and the more advocacy Management Coordinator for we participate in can only Cedars Springs Austin. For more information, you can visit ensure continued change cedarspringsaustin.com or call in the climate of mental 512.732.2400. health care.

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Texas Realtor®, ABR ® Residential Sales, Leasing & Investment

512.762.4228 Cell 512.337.0234 Office www.DyessResidential.com “SELLING AUSTIN LIFESTYLES SINCE 2005”

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MeDicAl

raising aWareness:

oral cancer How Do I Know If I Have Oral Cancer? spEcial contriBUtion to Austin Md MAGAZine

oraL cancer aWareness

dr. Michael Moossy dds General & Cosmetic dentistry

We want to be a part of promoting Oral Cancer Awareness with our practice. Oral cancer is defined as a subtype of head and neck cancer, and it includes any cancerous tissue growth located in the oral cavity. It can be life threatening if it’s not diagnosed and treated early. Close to 42,000 Americans have been diagnosed with oral or pharyngeal cancer this year. According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, it can cause over 8,000 deaths killing roughly 1 person per hour in a 24 hour day. The death rate for oral cancer is higher than that of other cancers that are more commonly heard of - such as cervical cancer, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and endocrine system cancers such as thyroid and skin cancer (malignant melanoma).

so Who is at risk?

For More information: visit drmoossy.com to find out more about general and cosmetic dentistry.

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According to research done in the past, a big number of oral cancer patients mainly included smokers and adults over the age of 40. Studies also reported that men are twice as likely to develop oral cancer. Currently, the numbers seem to be growing for those under 40 due to HPV (Human Papilloma Virus). HPV has been proven to be sexually transmitted between partners, and is conclusively implicated in this increasing trend of young and non-smoking cancer patients. Th is is the

same virus that causes cervical cancer. Other factors that increase your risk of oral cancer are tobacco use, alcohol consumption, and excessive sun exposure. Those using dip, snuff, or chewing tobacco products are 50 times more likely to develop cancers of the cheek, gums, and lining of lips.

hoW do i knoW if i haVe oraL cancer? One of the real dangers of oral cancer is that in its early stages, it can go unseen or unnoticed. It can sometimes have no pain involved, and the physical changes are very small, so it may not be obvious. This is why it is very important to have regular visits in order for your hygienist and doctor to be able to spot any changes or irregularities. A few of the symptoms associated with oral cancer include: a lump or rough spots (which can be felt inside the mouth or neck), difficulty in breathing, chewing, speaking, any wart like masses, long lasting hoarseness, or any numbness in the oral or facial region.

What can i do aBout it? Make sure your dentist performs proper cancer screenings with visual cancer screening during your dental office visits. He should recommend a biopsy in any sign of a suspicious area.

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Business

BENEFITS OF BEING

THE GIVER Learn how you can make a meaningful contribution that will make a real change in someone else’s life by Alex Winkelman

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hilanthropy, for the love of mankind and the advancement of human welfare, encompasses so much. Philanthropy benefits both the benefactors and beneficiaries. The givers learn generosity, sharing, compassion, empathy, sympathy, dedication, commitment, and love…the list goes on and on. And the recipients receive so much, from resources in the form of money and in-kind gifts, to also lessons of generosity, compassion, dedication, love, and much more. Philanthropy is a key part of learning about life and all that goes into making us human beings tick. We provide opportunities for all to benefit. I recently heard a beautiful quote that sums up my work with Citizen Generation: “I’ve never begged for a dollar in my life. I have, however, given some wonderful people a wonderful opportunity to help some wonderful causes.” This thought from Father Theodore Hesburg reminded me to never be afraid to ask someone for a donation. Those of us involved

in the asking are just trying to make the community better. Although we do benefit, the “ask” is not for us, it’s ultimately to help someone else. Throughout the year, Citizen Generation provides opportunities for new and young philanthropist to give. These opportunities range from fundraisers (CharityBash) and women empowerment gatherings (CharityLadies) to nonprofit tours (CharityLunch) and volunteer days (CharityVolunteers). We encompass all angles of philanthropy including time, talent, treasure, and ties (relationships). Many new and young philanthropists who attend our programming to the people we will never meet that receive help from our beneficiaries. In our fifth year of programming, our 2013 beneficiaries cover a wide range of issues and community needs, allowing Citizen Generation’s audience to find their niche and passion.

FMI: For more information, contact Citizen Generation at citizengeneration.org.

Here’s a bit of information about some of our 2013 beneficiaries The Alzheimer’s AssociationCapital of Texas Chapter provides family support, public awareness, and community education, as well as supporting research for the prevention, cure, and treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders. American YouthWorks is dedicated to empowering at-risk youth through education, service and green jobs training. For more than thirty years, they have assisted thousands of youth

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in transforming their lives through service to others, education and a commitment to preserving the natural environment. Animal Trustees of Austin has provided safe, compassionate and affordable treatment for animals in our community regardless of their owner’s income. Austin Children’s Shelter provides a safe home and supportive services for children, youth and young adults from birth to 22 who have experienced

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significant loss, trauma, abuse and/or neglect in their lives. Most children at the Austin Children’s Shelter have been removed from their homes by Child Protective Services because of severe abuse or neglect.

Animal Sanctuary assists animals in need through rescue, rehabilitation and education. They currently have over 300 animals from over 100 different species at the Zoo.

Austin Clubhouse exists to provide acceptance and empowerment so adults living with mental health diagnoses can pursue personal goals and play a meaningful role as co-workers, colleagues, family members and friends.

Groundwork Music Project provides free and low cost music lessons to young children with limited means. Knowing that young children respond to music from the moment they are born, the program introduces musical activities and lessons

Austin Zoo and

essential for healthy emotional, cognitive, and social development. Creative Action supports the academic, social and emotional development of young people through interactive classroom performances, after school arts residencies and community-based programs. JB & Sandy’s Bikes for Kids was started over 16 years ago. With the help of Mix 94.7 listeners and local businesses, the charity has raised over $1.5 million

and donated over 16,000 brand new Trek bikes complete with locks and helmets to kids in the Austin community. People Fund provides small business loans as well as business assistance and education to people with otherwise limited access to such resources. Strong Start prevents the cycle of child abuse and neglect by early intervention that focuses on building successful and resilient children, strengthening parents and preserving families.

PHOTO by Jessica Attie


“I’ve never begged for a dollar in my life. I have, however, given some wonderful people a wonderful opportunity

to help some wonderful causes.”

Austin Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure provides free breast cancer screening, education and medical services as well as financial and emotional support on a local level. Mexic-Arte Museum is the official Mexican and Mexican American Fine Art Museum of Texas. The

museum contributes to cultural enrichment and improves the quality of life in Texas through exhibitions and educational programming. The Blanton Museum of Art at The University of Texas at Austin enriches and transforms the lives of learners of

all ages by providing inspiring and relevant experiences with original works of art. The Settlement Home for Children promotes healing and growth in children, young adults, and families by providing a continuum of care, support, and resources.

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FMI:To find out more about Citizen Generation’s valuable community work, visit CitizenGeneration.orgDespite the roadblocks and barriers put forth by private insurance, the American people are smart. The more questions we ask, the more accountability we demand and the more advocacy we participate in can only ensure continued change in the climate of mental health care.


Business

A Beacon of Hope for Austin Startup Nonprofits Hope to Youth and Grace and Dignity to the Elderly SPECIAL CONTRIBUTION TO AUSTIN MD MAGAZINE

I

n 2000, husband and wife team Philip and Donna Berber founded A Glimmer of Hope to tackle issues of water sanitation, healthcare and education access in one of the world’s poorest countries, Ethiopia. Philip Berber had recently sold his online trading company CyBerCorp to Charles Schwab Corp. and the couple decided to set up an endowment for international development. In 2003, the foundation recognized the need to do something within the local community of Austin, where nearly one in five residents live in poverty. In particular, they saw the potential in innovative grassroot non-profits that were already taking the initiative and using their own money to provide much needed services to the underserved in their communities. A Glimmer of Hope Austin (affectionately called Glimmer Austin) was born to support social entrepreneurs who are driven by the desire to improve their communities and change lives. Glimmer Austin’s driving force is giving opportunity and hope to the youth, and grace and dignity to the elderly. Most impressively, this month, in conjunction with the launch of a brand new Glimmer Austin website, the organization will be offering a free online campaigning platform to former grantees to allow groups to fundraise above and beyond the financial commitment they have already received from Glimmer Austin. “It is our hope that this new website will encourage donors to get involved with directly funding local Austin nonprofits. This platform will enable our groups to continue to support themselves and to grow beyond the seed capital we have provided them,” said the executive director David Porter, “We recognize the vital role these organizations play, and we’re committed to supporting them in their efforts to alleviate disparities in the Austin community.” For larger donations or fundraisers, Glimmer Austin recommends interested donors reach out directly to organization staff.

Hope began with an international focus then decided to help bring much needed resources to the Austin area.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: To learn more about A Glimmer of Hope Austin and get involved, please visit http://aglimmerofhopeaustin.org. The endowment covers all overhead expenses of Glimmer, including staff salaries, so that 100% of all donations to the charity can go directly to projects.

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PHOTOs by Glimmer of Hope


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Business

Talent is universal. Opportunity is not.

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Andy Roddick foundaTion serves up celebriTy golf evenT The Andy Roddick Foundation (ARF) works to develop and inspire underserved youth through education and sportsbased mentoring, preparing each youth to succeed in the game of life. BY todd JoHnston

Andy roddick and Blake Mycoskie at the Barton Creek Country Club

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ennis legend Andy Roddick along with, model turned actress, wife Brooklyn Decker hosted a celebrity golf tournament and kick-off party to raise money for the Andy Roddick Foundation and Austin MD Magazine shared in the festivities at the “Bogey Down Party” Sunday, April 14th at the Barton Creek Country Club. The Bogey Down Party included a silent auction with items donated from a “who’s who” list of athletes, celebrities and companies from around the world. Among the guests boogying to the 80’s hits performed by the Spazmatics were tennis ace Jim Courier and baseball great Roger Clemens. Bobby Bones MC’d the night’s events and Austin’s own Tje Austin gave the crowd a taste of his musical genius as “A private show with Tje Austin” was auctioned off. (The winning bid was $5000 for the talented crooner!) In addition to the Spazmatics, guests enjoyed vintage ‘80’s video games by Game Plan Entertainment and had cool pictures taken by On the Flipside who provided their interactive “graffiti wall.” Ever the gracious host, Andy took to the microphone and gave a short speech in which he announced plans for growth of the ARF and graciously thanked the ARF staff and all of those who have helped raise over $13 Million to support youth learning and development. The ARF is located on seven acres in East Austin on the campus that includes the Kipp Academy. Renovations are underway to complete the Tennis and Learning Center which will offer afterschool and summer programming for youth in Austin, and the foundation recently announced its new board of directors, which includes, amongAndy Roddick, Jeff Lau, Paul Bell, Andy Esparza, Maria Farahani, Phil Meyers and Billie Jean King. With the plans and board of directors in place, the ARF looks towards a future of serving the Austin Community with a focus on sportsbased mentoring as a tool to build the skills youth need for a lifetime of success. Austin MD and Green Iceberg Publications wish all the best to the Andy Roddick Foundation and applaud the efforts of Andy, Brooklyn, the entire staff, board of directors and supporters who are contributing their time, talent or finances to help ARF achieve their goals. For more information about the Tennis and Learning Center or pledge opportunities and benefits please email inquiry@arfoundation.org “Talent is Universal. Opportunity is Not.” -Andy Roddick Foundation

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EVENTS

CELEBRANDO photography by RUBEN MORALES

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he Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce marked their 40th anniversary with their largest event of the year, Celebrando Austin. The gala was attended by 1,000 members, elected officials, community leaders, and entrepreneurs in celebration of the Chamber’s successes. Small business owners and community leaders were recognized during the event, which also featured critically acclaimed concert pianist Reuel and Grammy awardwinning Grupo Fantasma. The GAHCC thanks everyone who attended.

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EVENTS

Leap Lifeworks

White Party

O

photography by Jared Tennant

ver 700 people dressed in their chic white attire to support LifeWorks and had a blast doing it. Dancing, Grey Goose cocktails, delicious bites from Austin’s finest restaurants and a beautiful night under the backdrop of the Austin skyline! What’s more important is this event provides critical financial support to LifeWorks’ continuum of care for Central Texas youth and families. Austinites helped raise over $140,000 for Austin’s youth and families.


beauty

Do’s & Don’ts of Medical Facial Book it to your beauty doc for a facial that delivers results rather than simple relaxation. By Meredith Davis

F Meredith Davis is the founder of Austin Beauty Guide. For more beauty tips, local resources and information on the musthave products and trends of the season, visit www.austinbeautyguide.com or follow Davis on Twitter (@MsMeredithDavis).

acials are a typical item on spa menus and can be found in most salons, but have you considered your local doctor’s office for a facial? More specifically, local skin doctors such as dermatologists and plastic surgeons also offer this popular spa service; however, this treatment tends to be a lot less luxurious but much more effective. Medical facials focus on results rather than relaxation; they give extra attention to serious skin problems and concentrate on deep exfoliation to renew the surface of the skin.

What is a Medical Facial? Medical facials appear to be the evil twin of the spa facial; they are not considered pampering and are more like a hard-core workout for the skin.

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However, if you have specific skin concerns, they are the best option for improvement. A medical facial provides a clinical approach to treatment and is more concerned with the outcome rather than a relaxing spa-like experience. “If your goal is an hour of rest and relaxation, then the spa facial is your best choice; if you are genuinely interested in improving or correcting a skin condition or want to mitigate the signs of aging, then the medical facial is substantially more effective,” says Victoria Hunter, aesthetic nurse specialist of New U Plastic Surgery. “While a medical facial can sometimes be relaxing, the bottom line is about truly improving and rejuvenating your skin,” she said. Typically, the skin renews itself every 4 to 6 weeks.

images from Shutterstock


As we age, our skin cell turnover rate slows down, which can result in acne, wrinkling and lackluster skin. Often with a medical-grade facial, physical and chemical forms of exfoliation are utilized, which allows the natural sloughing of dead skin cells to occur at a quicker pace, resulting in more beautiful skin. Facials combined with medical-grade ingredients or devices will not only improve the look of your skin, but also the long-term health of it as well.

The Difference Under the supervision of an M.D., “the practitioner has access to products and devices that are not available to traditional spas,” says Hunter. Stronger concentrations and prescription-strength ingredients can be used, as well as light and laser treatments, plus more aggressive peels and microdermabrasion. Various techniques such as these

“are often combined in a customized facial and an ongoing care plan directly driven by the client’s specific skin goals,” says Hunter. Popular medical facials can combine multiple treatments such as IPL photofacials and chemical peels, which can improve sun damage, discoloration, skin texture, breakouts and signs of aging. “Blending treatments is essential to enhance the overall look and condition of the human face,” says Hunter. “At NewU, we like to approach the skin from a 3-D perspective.” Hunter will first consider the deepest layers of the skin and contours of the face; then she will review the architecture and volume of the face, while finally focusing on the surface of the skin, which includes pigment, texture and tone. Considering all levels of the skin, various medical techniques can be blended to achieve maximum results. The good news? Medical facials are not necessarily more expensive than a spa facial. They are often on par with day spas and can be less expensive since you are not paying for the spa experience.

If you want to maintain your glow after a medical facial treatment, then regular maintenance is a must

Prolonging your Results: Dos and Don’t’s Immediately after your treatment, it is important to go makeup-free to let the ingredients work their magic. In addition, avoid picking your skin, touching your face and using products that include retinol. The key to keeping your skin tone even and maintaining how it looks between facials is to wear sunscreen. Dark spots will come back, so it is crucial to avoid the sun and apply sunscreen of at least SPF 30. If you want to maintain your glow after a medical facial treatment, then regular maintenance is a must. Facials, light peels or professional skin care products will help sustain your healthy glow. If all else fails, don’t hesitate to contact your practitioner with any concerns or questions. After all, they are here to help you.

FOR MORE INFORMATION (FMI): Meredith Davis (@MsMeredithDavis) is the Founder of Austin Beauty Guide. For more beauty tips, local resources and information on the must-have products or trends of the season, visit AustinBeautyGuide.com.

“If you are genuinely interested in improving or correcting a skin condition or want to mitigate the signs of aging, then

the medical facial is substantially more effective” A u s t i n MD m a g a z i n e . c o m

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beauty

Med Spa: Benefits, Risks, Latest Procedures Dr. Shirat Ling of Innate Beauty Rejuvenation Center gives her insight on what we should really look for to have the best experience By Ariel Min

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edical Spa emerged as a result of the union of spa and fitness industries, promoting healthy lifestyle and beauty treatments that are beneficial to your body. The International SPA Association defines this new institution as the provider of “comprehensive medical and wellness care in an environment, which integrates spa services as well as conventional and complementary therapies and treatments.” Medical spas include certified doctors, dermatologists, plastic surgeons, and other experts who are willing to add a higher-level service to those who are seeking dependable treatment. It is a new, popular trend that has been gaining support from many spa-goers, and it hasn’t been long since Austin joined the club. Some popular Med Spas in Austin include Austin Med Spa, Serenity Creek Med Spa, Aesthetica Med Spa, etc. As popular as medical spa currently is, it’s not necessarily without risks. It’s important to do a thorough check on the credentials of the med spa you might visit, just like how you would check the credentials of certain doctors, schools, and professionals in other fields. Dr. Shirat Ling of Innate Beauty Rejuvenation Center explained that 90% of the complications and problems come from aestheticians who bestow the title “medical aesthetician” upon themselves just because they perform the procedures in doctor’s offices. These aestheticians often don’t necessarily have credentials as medically certified

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physicians. She also explained that even though many medical spas might have a physician nearby, he or she does not perform procedures with much regularity and does not have direct supervision over the staff. “One of my clients went to the med spa next door and got burned twice, with lingering hyperpigmentation, but they refused to refund her the remainder of the package she purchased,” Dr. Ling said, “she had lily white skin and black hair - the kind of skin that is the most ideal for laser treatments absolutely no reason to ever get burnt.” Therefore, it’s important to check the credentials and real customer reviews, including a credible amount of well-taken before and after photos. Also, it would be a good idea to investigate thoroughly about services that are highly discounted with services like Groupon or LivingSocial.

BeautY is health. Beauty is harmony

“Your face is the last thing you should go discount shopping for,” said Dr. Ling. Despite some risks and problems involved, medical spas are currently a fast growing trend in America. According to the measures taken by the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery last year, cosmetic procedures have risen 197% since 1997, and

surgical procedures have increased by 73%. Non-surgical procedures, such as Botox, facial fillers and laser hair removal, have increased by 356%. It also reported that Americans have spent more than $10 billion on cosmetic procedures in 2011 alone. So what are some latest med spa procedures that have been gaining popularity? Amongst many procedures, we chose to look closely at Smart Lipo and Vampire Facial.

SmartLipo Smart Liposuction is mainly meant for small areas of fat that are usually resilient to efforts in diet and exercise, like areas we call love handles, jiggly upper arms, and the stubborn belly fat that won’t go away. The procedure utilizes laser energy to melt and liquefy fat before it’s removed through a small tube. This type of liposuction has many benefits over more invasive traditional methods, according to information listed on SmartLipo. org. It’s minimally invasive, has less downtime, and offers quicker recovery. The website also claims that SmartLipo can smooth and tighten your skin. Dr Ling, who has been trained in SmartLipo, explained the cost and effects of the practice. “The results of SmartLipo are just about identical to tumescent liposuction after six months, but at 3 times the cost. The laser does help with skin tightening to some degree, depending on the aggressiveness of the practitioner in consistently removing the fat and getting it just below the skin to deliver

image from Shutterstock


the skin tightening portion. Many physicians do not perform this last part,” she said. For ultimate fat loss, Dr. Ling recommends, diet and exercise are still the most important part of the whole routine, as they will lead to the most consistent results and gaining muscle mass that would help prevent serious injuries.

Vampire Facial The name Vampire facial was driven from traditional folktales (and maybe Stephanie Meyers) that define vampires as never-aging,

enticingly beautiful creatures. Vampire facial is a nonsurgical facial rejuvenation procedure, and is a type of Liquid Facelift. While a typical Liquid Facelift uses Botox and other fillers like Juvederm and Restylane to sculpt the face, Vampire facial uses the body’s own blood instead to repair the skin. However, there hasn’t been a medical evidence that has been published for this practice yet. Dr. Ling says it has been difficult to judge the effectiveness of Vampire Facial, partially because of the lack of evidential testimonies or results.

“When trendy procedures come to public knowledge, I tend to sit back and watch to see what the true results are within a year or so. Most of the time, it is just hype,” Dr. Ling explained her skepticism, “I believe that to be the case with vampire facelift.” However, this trend is a step in seeking more natural, organic procedures that would have little to no side effects. One of the best parts would be that there are little to no risks of allergic reaction, since there aren’t any synthesized toxins or chemicals involved in the procedure.

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business

Q&a With Alex Charfen

i’m ofTen very overWhelmed and forgeT To focus on The company’s longTerm sTraTegy.

do you have any suGGestions on how to stay out of the weeds?

T

Alex Charfen Alex Charfen founded the Charfen Institute in 2008 after 15 years of working as a consultant. It has quickly become one of the fastest growing business education, training and coaching companies in the country. He is a regular contributor to both Fox and CNBC. Recognition includes Best Places to Work and Healthiest Employer in Austin every year it has been eligible, first place in Austin Fast 50, Inc 500 company in 2011 and 2012. Alex is an Austin Under 40 alumni and was voted Austin’s Fittest Entrepreneur. Alex and his wife Cadey built their company with no outside investment, are debt free and have been profitable since month one; they live in Austin with their daughters Reagan and Kennedy.

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anner, this is a fantastic question because it shows that you’re being honest with yourself, and you see that you may be missing something here. So many entrepreneurs will echo this sentiment and are also looking for an answer. I want to congratulate you because so many entrepreneurs, self-employed business people, and professionals rarely think about the long-term. If they do, it may be once or twice a year then they immediately go back to the day-to-day. You’re in an elite group that’s actually thinking, “where am I going, and what should my destination be?” rather than just thinking about what you have to do to make it through the day. Feeling overwhelmed is really the feeling of being completely reactive. I would say that we are more reactive today than we’ve ever been in the history of humankind. I know that’s a bold statement, but when you look at the end list stream of distractions and programs, tools, texts, tweets, updates, and applications that cause us to react, it is tough to argue otherwise. We have transitioned from a world where communication happens in real time to a world where communication literally travels at the speed of light, and it can happen from anywhere (and fi nd us anywhere). A recent survey of American adults showed that the majority of us check the email right before we go to


tanner shepard is the co-founder of ranch road and eco-friendly digital printing company that is on the rise in the Austin business scene

sleep, and then again right when we wake up in the morning. Th is is the defi nition of reactivity since email is the act of choosing to let the person on the other end of the message manage our time, intention and focus. Now before you stop reading, I know you can’t stop answering emails, responding to texts and cut off communication – that simply is not realistic. However you can and should stop the cycle of reactivity so many people are caught up in. The good news is that this is actually much easier than it sounds. The solution is proactivity. We call the solution “Planning and Solitude,” and the good news is that you can start tomorrow morning! While we cannot completely eliminate the reactivity that inevitably follows us throughout the day, we can proactively decide to start each day. So when you wake up tomorrow morning, stop checking your email, stop watching TV, stop checking Facebook, and stop anything else that may distract you from setting up your day. Find a quiet place and ask yourself the following questions: 1. What will be the best use of my time today? 2. Which items on my agenda require immediate attention? 3. What items on my agenda will create momentum?

4. What can I delegate? 5. What can I delete? 6. What will I do today to progress toward my goals? As you go through these questions, keep a journal or notes of the answers on a daily basis. These will provide you with a roadmap of where you’ve been and where you are today. You’ll fi nd that there are patterns in what you’re doing, and you will quickly identify where you can apply leverage to get more out of every day. You can also keep a list of those things that you commit to doing each day and make sure they’re getting done. John D. Rockefeller had a habit of selecting one or two things that would move his world forward on a daily basis and refused to leave his office until they were completed. He attributed most of his success to this very discipline. How much more success would we see in our lives if we committed to doing that and beyond? You may be asking yourself, is getting “out of the weeds” really this simple? Trust me, I have gotten this question before; thousands of entrepreneurs that we have trained have asked the very same thing. What they found in the end just after a few days or weeks is that this is the most valuable time that they have every day. They wouldn’t trade planning and solitude for anything!

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business

S

o you’ve joined Austin’s booming startup scene. You came up with awesome ideas and mingled at SXSW. You’re all set up, you have support and investment from friends and partners, and you’re ready to go. In the midst of all the excitement surrounding the small, local business, it’s important to remember your goals and strategize well to keep your business strong and continuously grow. So here are some tips that will lead you to the right path:

1. niche. Know the difference between points of parity, which are things you must do just to be relevant and meet the expectations of your customers, and points of differentiation, which truly distinguish you from your competition and help you exceed customer expectations. In other words, know exactly who you’re targeting and everything there is to know about them.

2. Be persistent. Typically, you can find a solution to any obstacle when you seek them in the right place. It’s important not to give up quickly, especially when proactiveness and patience are needed. 3. keep it simple. People’s interaction with your product should be simple and easy. Nobody likes long, frustrating, and complicated procedures when it’s costing them their time and money. Also, on your website, it might be a good idea to eliminate content that customers would not be most interested in. Instead, figure out how you can convey effective and interesting information without being wordy. Th is can be done with graphics, interactives, and other technical features.

11 HABITS

FOR KEEPING YOUR SMALL BUSINESS STRONG City of Austin - Small Business Development Program BY Joy Miller

4. look for help. Austin loves local entrepreneurs and has many and varied resources and services to assist small businesses. Always offer to give back and help others in return. When you can articulate exactly what you want, people are willing to help you.

5. network. People like to do business with people they have a connection with. Always be prepared to share your 30 second elevator pitch. You never know where your next customer is.

6. Build trust.

with your customers and

your employees.

7. collect useful data. Then, use it!

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For More inForMaTion: Contact Joy Miller, at LocallyAustin.org

iMage froM shUtterstock


8. Adapt. Stay in tune with changing trends or shifts within your industry, both locally and nationally. Align future business strategy with those trends and adapt to changes within your respective market. Some of the most recognized corporations are struggling now because they relied too much on a complacent business model and failed to adapt to changes in the industry. Sears, Best Buy, and JC Penny are great examples of juggernaut companies that have floundered recently because they failed to address shifts in the retail market and incorporate them into their business model. Small businesses do the same thing. If a company wants to survive in the long term, it must always be ready to adapt. 9. Establish a clear management structure or delegate. You do not have to be a master at everything. Understand when and what to delegate or outsource to others. Determine what would be better done by others to save you time or because you do not have the expertise. Bookkeeping and accounting are examples that come to mind. Better to pay an expert than to make costly mistakes and run your business accordingly. Do your part and allow your partners to do theirs. Frustration for you and for staff is minimized as well.

10. Market. Allocate resources for a marketing plan and a brand awareness strategy. Many small business owners focus on being great service providers or subject matter experts but they often do not allocate their time, funds, or staff for exposing the business to the community.

11. Be open to Growth. Is there a natural new market or product for you to explore? Be open to growth.

Keep it simple. People’s interaction with your product should be

simple and easy

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business John dyess is the founder of dyezz surveillance and security inc. one of the fastest growing surveillance companies in the country.

guide To keeping your

home and

business

SAFE Ask the Experts

Writer: CHristine leMAir

for safer hoMe: Q: “Our gated community is pretty close-knit. There are times when we may see strange vehicles driving through, but we don’t necessarily want to call the police every time we see something suspicious. Is there anything we can do? a: If you’re a member of a gated community, approach your HOA or community management about upgrading the existing access controls for stricter access requirements and installing license plate/make and model cameras at all the entry and exit points of the community. If people are entering the community strictly for snooping purposes, the sight of the surveillance cameras alone will often deter them from entering. Q: “We’re leaving for vacation this summer for about a month. I have an alarm system, so I should be okay, right?” a: If you don’t have someone to housesit for you, consider investing in a marginal amount of home automation. You can control your lights from your cellular phone, tablet PC, or laptop from pretty much anywhere in the world. Schedule the lights in specific rooms to turn on and off at certain times to mimic the appearance that the family is home, and the usual hustle-bustle is afoot. Even if you have an existing alarm system, it may not prevent attempted theft or damage from happening, nor will it always deter a burglar from considering your home as a target. If you’re leaving for an extended period of time and have an alarm, give your monitoring station specific instructions to dispatch police or the fire department immediately in case of an alarm.

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for safer office: Q: “As an owner of a small practice, do I have to do anything else to restrict access to Protected Health Information located in our Electronic Health Records (EHR) besides passwords and firewalls?” a: Yes. If you’re using an EHR system, HIPAA requires that physical access to the devices and hardware making up the EHR system (servers included) be restricted to only authorized personnel. Look into biometric access controls for the entry/exit points to fi le rooms containing confidential information. Keys and numeric passcodes can be compromised and misused, but a fi ngerprint cannot be. Also, consider installing surveillance cameras in the area. It will increase the accountability of your staff and reduce the risk of compromising the confidence of your patients. Q: “I want to install cameras in my office. Is this going to break HIPAA laws?”

a: No. Compliance lies in the placement of your cameras. You may freely monitor your entry and exit points to the building, the reception area, and the area behind the reception desk. The area behind the reception desk becomes slightly gray; as long as visibility of your patients’ paper fi les or computer screens containing PIH are not within the direct reach of the cameras so that words on a page can be read when viewing camera feeds remotely, you are within compliance. You may also freely monitor your supply closets and any server rooms that may contain hardware tied to EHR. As you may have already guessed, testing rooms and patient rooms are absolutely off-limits for video surveillance. For More inForMaTion: For more “Ask the Security Experts” questions, you reach Christine Lemaire via our Twitter account at @Dyezz. Contact us on our website at www.dyezz.com or 512-331-2788.

iMage froM adaM MoraZ


business

plaTInUM or WHITe Gold... What’s the Difference? BY JosePH r. VillArreAl

I am often asked: “What is the difference between platinum and gold – which should I select for my diamond engagement ring purchase?” While platinum and white gold may look alike when they are new, there are clear differences. I listed a few comparisons below:

PLatinuM WiLL aLWays keeP its Bright White coLor Described as a “naturally occurring” white metal, a new platinum ring will indeed have a white, bright, shiny fi nish. However, over-time wear and tear will take its toll on platinum and will develop a dull look, almost pewter-like in color and shine. Th is may be rectified by re-polishing the ring to maintain a bright, white luster.

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White goLd turns yeLLoWish oVer tiMe Like platinum, white gold also exhibits a bright, shiny fi nish. Over time, however, it can lose its white color. Gold is naturally yellow. So, what gives white gold its white color? It is part of common alloy metal like nickel, zinc or palladium that are mixed with gold for a bright, white color. However, you can only add so much of the perspective white alloy mix to obtain a bright, white color without adulterating the fi neness of the gold content. Even so, white gold will still have a yellow tint to its color. So, how do they make it looker bright white like platinum? Furthermore, as part of the finishing pro-

cess, white gold is then electroplated with a precious metal called rhodium. The rhodium gives white gold a bright, white luster like platinum. Rhodium comes from the platinum family and is a very costly metal - typically as much as $3,500 an ounce compared to platinum and gold, at roughly $1,400-1,600 oz.

PLatinuM is a tougher MetaL Platinum is tough and malleable, and is much less likely to break or crack like white gold could. Since it is not a “harder” metal, platinum will scratch and ding easier than white gold. Again, properly re-polishing the metal can restore the metal to its near pristine condition.

iMages froM shUtterstock


it’s ultimately your choice to choose the best metal for your ring.

“Which should i selecT for my diamond engagemenT

rinG

purchase?”

FMi: For additional information, contact Joseph R. Villarreal, G.G., at Villarreal Fine Jewelers, located at 7600 burnet Rd., Ste. 520, Austin, TX 78757. Call 512-231-8502 or visit www.VillarrealJewelers.com.

White goLd is a harder MetaL Not only does nickel give white gold its color, but it also gives it a harder finish. In doing so, white gold has more resistance to scratches and dings. Under high stress though, white gold is more likely to crack or break.

PLatinuM Purity Platinum is a purer metal. What does that mean? Platinum jewelry is typically 90-95% pure. The other 5-10% may be alloyed or mixed with cobalt, ruthenium or iridium. platinum may be quality stamped platinum, Pt., or Plat. Other designations may also be 850 - 85% pure platinum, 900 - 90% pure platinum, 950 - 95% pure platinum and fi-

nally 999 - 99.9% pure platinum. Because of platinum’s purity, it is hypoallergenic. Therefore, you are not likely to have an allergic reaction.

goLd Purity Quality marks for white or yellow gold are stamped - 10K - 417 or 41.7% pure gold, 14K 585 or 58.5% pure gold, 18K - 750 or 75% pure gold and 24K - 999 or 99.9% pure gold. As mentioned above, white gold may be alloyed with nickel, zinc, palladium and copper. Other color variations such as yellow, green, rose or pink gold may be mixed with a combination of copper, silver and zinc. Some people may have an allergic reaction to the nickel in white gold and sometimes in yellow gold as well.

PLatinuM Price The rarity of platinum explains its higher price than that of gold. Also, platinum is a purer metal, usually 95% pure, hence more costly. Platinum is also a denser metal - approximately one-third more than a same piece made in 18K Gold. Lastly, platinum is a much more labor intensive metal and requires a higher expertise. More labor equals a higher price.

goLd Price In retrospect, gold jewelry is less pure than platinum and therefore priced less. While gold requires a certain level of expertise, it is still easier to work with, which explains its popularity.

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Dining

Se a r suc k er Ch e f a n d ow n er

Brain Malarkey’s

Healthy Indulgences Healthy Indulgence. It’s not an oxymoron as much as the yin and yang of existence. How do we balance enjoying life without overdoing it? How can we savor what we crave, in particular food, and stay healthy? BY Samantha Davidson

Chef Malarkey’s new restaurant, Searsucker, will open in downtown Austin in June 2013

C

hef Brian Malarkey, well-known as a “Top Chef ” finalist and more recently as the victor on the ABC show “The Taste” with Anthony Bourdain and Nigella Lawson, is a living breathing example of someone whose success depends on maintaining that balance. A chef, TV personality, restaurant owner and entrepreneur, cookbook author, husband and father of three, Malarkey knows a thing or two about the best ways to indulge but keep it healthy. His menu at Searsucker, a concept he brings to Austin in June, is a playful intermingling of accessibility, seasonality, rich flavors and exu-

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berance. Searsucker welcomes guests with “New American Classics” like Citrus Marinated Airline Breast Chicken with Crushed Fingerling Potatoes and the Tongue and Cheek with Agave, Fresco and Cactus. These seasonal items live comfortably on the menu alongside richer fare like the Ribeye Tomahawk with Cognac and Horseradish and Chef Malarkey’s signature Chicken and Waffles. And that’s just how he likes it. “I believe in Julia Child’s approach to food and living ‘Do not live without the fun and excess of life’.” Malarkey continues, “Add that delicious butter to your grits but go for a run afterwards. Don’t sacrifice those things that make life taste better, but know that you’re going to have to keep it in check.”

photos by Mike Pawlenty


‘SUMMer loVInG’ WaTerMelon Salad SERVES 4 FRIENDS | as an aPP

For the balsamic syrup: 1 cup balsamic vinegar ¼ cup granulated sugar For the vinaigrette: 1 cup sherry vinegar ¼ cup honey ½ red onion, diced ½ cup extra virgin olive oil Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste For the salad: 1 big handful spring mixed greens 4 cups red and yellow seedless watermelon, diced large 3 cups Capri tomatoes, diced large or red and yellow cherry or pear tomatoes, sliced in half 1 tablespoon chives, sliced into thin strips 6 fresh basil leaves, sliced into thin strips ¹∕3 cup goat cheese Finishing touch Edible flowers (optional)

hoW To do iT Chef’s note: This balsamic syrup can be used for a ton of things. It’s great as a garnish for everything from grilled chicken to ice cream to watermelon salad. Make the balsamic syrup: In a small saucepot over medium heat combine the balsamic and sugar and reduce by about half until it just reaches a syrup consistency. (Note: you can flavor the balsamic with everything from blackberries to cherries to orange to bacon to figs — let your imagination go crazy!)

1

Make the vinaigrette: In a small saucepot bring the sherry vinegar and honey to a boil. Add the onion and turn the heat off. Let cool to room temperature, about 1 hour, and strain out the pickled onions (save them for the salad).

2

Watermelon salad by Chef Brian Malarkey

Chef Malarkey’s philosophy infuses his menus and his cookbook, “Come Early, Stay Late,”a title that hints at his over all approach to cooking and dining: welcoming, energetic but always with a not-so-serious wink. The “Summer Loving Watermelon Salad” exemplifies the fresh seasonality that is a hallmark of Malarkey’s culinary philosophy. As watermelon comes into season, Malarkey loves using the juicy summer fruit in his salads as a sweet counterpart to savory ingredients like vinegar to create a rich textural dish that is healthy but flavorful and rich. He says, “at Searsucker, we keep it seasonal and I think many agree that it doesn’t get much better than eating Texas watermelon in summertime.”

Assemble and serve: In a large bowl, whisk together half the sherry mixture with the olive oil (save the rest for another day). Taste and adjust seasoning. Toss in all the salad ingredients, except for the goat cheese, and mix well to combine and coat with dressing. Crumble the goat cheese over the top, garnish with edible flowers, if desired, and finish with a drizzle bomb of balsamic syrup all over!

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May / June 2013  
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