Like mother, like daughter, at least around the eyes

Oct 28, 2009 by Lin Edwards weblog
eye

(PhysOrg.com) -- New research suggests the old saying commonly told to husbands-to-be is true, that if you want to know what your wife will look like, look at her mother.

A group of plastic surgeons from the Loma Linda University Medical Center in California scanned the faces of mothers and their daughters. They found that the daughters' faces were beginning to sag, wrinkle, thin, and lose elasticity around the eyes in exactly the same patterns as their mothers' faces, with the effect becoming more noticeable after daughters reached their mid 30s.

One of the surgeons, Dr Matthew Camp, said the study was the first to prove scientifically that like their mothers. Until now, Camp said, studies of facial aging have mostly been subjective and observational.

The team studied ten similar looking mother/daughter pairs ranging in age from 15 to 90, using facial imaging and 3-D computer modeling. The most pronounced similarities of sagging and loss of volume occurred around the tear ducts and the lower eyelids, which are areas where loss of elasticity and slackening of muscles is common as people age.

As a face ages and the lower eyelid muscles slacken, the fat beneath the tends to bulge out, causing "bags" under the eyes. A loss of elasticity results in loose skin accumulating as folds in the upper eyelids and creases under the eyes. According to a leading British facelift surgeon, Norman Waterhouse, past president of the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, aging in women's faces is more noticeable because women's faces change from oval to square as the skin sags, whereas men's tend to be square even when they are younger. A facelift is designed to offset the effect.

The American researchers said their results may be a useful aid for cosmetic surgery on the region, which is one of the commonest cosmetic surgery procedures. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPA) figures suggest surgery on the eyelids was the fourth most common plastic surgery operation in 2008.

One of the authors of the study, Dr Subhas Gupta, said that knowing exactly how a woman's lower eyelids will change with age can help surgeons plan a surgical "correction" that will prevent the changes seen in her mother.

The results of the study were presented last weekend to the annual American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) conference in Seattle, Washington in the US.

© 2009 PhysOrg.com

Explore further: Study tracks worldwide spread of beneficial blood cell gene variant

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Why do eyelids sag with age? New study answers mystery

Aug 26, 2008

Many theories have sought to explain what causes the baggy lower eyelids that come with aging, but UCLA researchers have now found that fat expansion in the eye socket is the primary culprit. As a result, ...

Recommended for you

Diet affects men's and women's gut microbes differently

8 hours ago

The microbes living in the guts of males and females react differently to diet, even when the diets are identical, according to a study by scientists from The University of Texas at Austin and six other institutions published ...

Researchers explore what happens when heart cells fail

10 hours ago

Through a grant from the United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation, Biomedical Engineering Associate Professor Naomi Chesler will embark upon a new collaborative research project to better understand ...

Stem cells from nerves form teeth

12 hours ago

Researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden have discovered that stem cells inside the soft tissues of the tooth come from an unexpected source, namely nerves. These findings are now being published in the journal Nature and co ...

User comments : 0