CBC News [Jan. 2014]
Calgary Herald [Oct. 2012]
Calgary Herald [SPRING 2011]
Calgary Herald [SPRING 2010]
Dr. Kristina Zakhary talks about Facial Plastic Surgery in the Calgary Herald
Women's Post [FEB 2010]
Dr. Kristina Zakhary: the Art of being a Doctor as published in WOMEN'S POST February 2010
BY Jacinda Liburd
Honest, kind, genuine, beautiful. You really could use any of these words to describe Dr. Kristina Zakhary, one of Canada's most accomplished facial cosmetic surgeons. Her business is beauty, inside and out. "I believe that the way a woman looks can really have a significant impact on her self-esteem," says Dr. Zakhary. "It is important to harmonize how we feel on the inside with what we project to the world."
From her extensive background in facial reconstruction right up to her own visibly flawless skin, Dr. Zakhary reveals that she practices what she preaches. "I have had some non-invasive procedures done, for example, I've had Restylane® treatments, and I love the results. In the future, if the benefits outweigh the risks for me, I would not hesitate to have a cosmetic surgery if I felt it would enhance my appearance and self-confidence."
But, of course, her main role is to help others who are making very personal, and sometimes very visible, decisions. "I always ask myself: Would I offer surgery to this person if this were my sister, mother, brother, uncle? ... [If] I don't feel like I would offer it to family, then I wouldn't offer it to a patient."
For as long as Dr. Zakhary can remember, medicine has been her passion. She studied at McGill University in Montreal for her pre-med and medical degrees, residency, and M.Sc. She became a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada in Otolaryngology (Head and Neck Surgery) and then did fellowship training at the University of Toronto in facial plastic and reconstructive surgery. She is now a diplomate of the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, as well as a member of the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. Dr. Zakhary has her home and practice in Calgary.
She is also one of only two female fellows of the Canadian Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, yet she doesn't see the pressures of the title as contingent upon gender, or anything else for that matter. "I never felt any pressure to prove myself," says Dr. Zakhary, "I just feel proud and honoured to have been given the opportunity and training to achieve and accomplish what I have."
Despite the necessity for technical knowledge and training, Dr. Zakhary still believes that it is a cosmetic surgeon's aesthetic sense that distinguishes him or her. "If you are going to reshape the body, particularly the face, you have to have a certain artistic sense. And I also think that artistic sense has to jell with that of the patient ... You both have to be on the same page in terms of what you think is beautiful."
Apart from beauty, one of the first things I realized about Dr. Zakhary is just how down-to-earth she is. Dr. Zakhary explains her grounding factors: "In my spare time I like to keep active and fit, as well as play the piano. When given the opportunity, I love to travel. I also come from a very tight-knit family so I really love to spend time with them." She also realizes that being a surgeon is not necessarily the be-all and end-all. "I definitely would love to have kids in the future," says Dr. Zakhary.
So I can't resist asking: What if, hypothetically, her daughter wanted to have plastic surgery?
"I would first find out what her motivations are: [if they] are personally driven. I would also find out what her expectations were, and whether those expectations were realistic. I would inform her of all the risks and benefits. So if she finally decided that the potential benefits outweighed the risks, and she had realistic expectations, and her motivations were personally driven, then I would be typically supportive." And although Dr. Zakhary knows that surgery is usually safe and can improve confidence, she does concede: "Honestly, what woman wouldn't hesitate when considering the thought of plastic surgery on her own daughter?"
Dr. Zakhary is a true professional. She's more likely to challenge you to grill her on her aesthetic sense or research her credentials than to herald the benefits of plastic surgery. It just doesn't get any more beautiful than that.
Jacinda Liburd is a Toronto-based freelance writer and budding future lawyer.
BEAUTY BOOST [OCT 2009]
THE EYES HAVE IT SURGICAL OPTIONS as published in B MAGAZINE October 2009
BY DR. KRISTINA ZAKHARY
It has often been said that the eyes are the windows to your soul. So what happens when the window shades droop over the windows?
Excess skin folds, undesired bulges, or drooping of the upper lids make you look tired and older than you feel. Eyelid surgery, also known as Blepharoplasty, corrects the bulges and wrinkles around your eyes, resulting in a more rested and youthful appearance. It can also be performed on fairly young individuals to correct hereditary heavy eyelids.
About The Surgery
Eyelid surgery is usually performed as a day surgery, with little discomfort, under local or general anesthesia, and under normal circumstances, takes between 1 to 2 hours to perform. The incisions are made in an inconspicuous site along the natural folds of the eyelids, or lashline, where scars are least visible. The excess skin, muscle, and sometimes pockets of fat, are then removed, and the incisions are closed with fine sutures, which can be removed between 5 to 7 days later.
Immediately after the surgery, you can be up and about. A certain degree of swelling and bruising is normal, and cold compresses, as well as head elevation when lying down, and eye drops, will enhance healing and relieve discomfort. You may be advised to limit certain activities for approximately 2 weeks following the surgery, following which you will most likely be able to return to your normal activities. Some mild swelling and the incisions continue to fade over time.
While most people who undergo eyelid surgery are older than 35, those who have inherited droopy or baggy eyelids sometimes undergo the procedure at an earlier age. Ideal candidates for this surgery are people in good physical and mental health, who have realistic expectations about the outcome of the procedure, and who have taken the risks of surgery into consideration. These risks must be discussed with your surgeon during the consultation.
Even those who seem like ideal candidates may not be well-suited for eyelid surgery, especially if they have specific medical or eye conditions that may be aggravated by the procedure, or may increase the risk of surgery. These include people who suffer from insufficient tear production, high blood pressure, diabetes, circulation disorders, or thyroid disease.
Combining Non Surgical Treatments
Many patients combine eyelid surgery with other non surgical treatments such as muscle relaxing agent for wrinkle reduction, especially in the crow's feet. Fillers, such as Restylane, can be used to replace lost cheek volume, and soften the crescentshaped hollowness at the lower eyelid-cheek junction, to camouflage lower eyelid puffiness. Additionally, laser resurfacing with a Fraxel laser can improve the texture of crêpey and wrinkled eyelid skin. These procedures can be performed alone or at the same time as the eyelid surgery.
Planning The Change
In considering any surgery, you must first be motivated to make the change for yourself, rather than to please others. The best source of information is your facial cosmetic surgeon who will discuss the options, define the expectations and inform you of any risks. Educate yourself about the procedure options and the surgeon's qualifications and training. If you're found to be a good candidate, eyelid surgery can correct those puffy or droopy upper eyelids and reduce those under-eye bags that make you appear older and more tired than you feel. By changing how you look, facial plastic surgery can help change how you feel about yourself, and let your light shine through.
BEAUTY BOOST [AUG 2009]
EARLOBE REJUVENATION & REPAIR as published in B MAGAZINE August 2009
BY DR. KRISTINA ZAKHARY
The newest wave in cosmetic procedures is earlobe rejuvenation and repair.
Torn or Stretched EarloBes
Preparations for these procedures are minimal. It takes from 1 1/2 – 2 hours depending on the situation and whether one or both ears are involved. If a patient is a good candidate for the procedure, a topical and local anesthetic is applied. Torn or stretched earlobes cannot just be sutured shut without removing a thin layer of the skin. For torn earlobes, after the thin layer of the skin is removed, and the edges are closed together, a special technique called a "z-plasty" is used to help the earlobe to remain rounded and natural looking, and avoid an indentation where the scar lays.
As we age, earlobes can sag and deflate just like the rest of the face, and years of wearing earrings that are too heavy can take its toll. Over time, just like the face, earlobes lose elasticity and volume which can lead to elongation, sagging, creases and an over-all appearance of looking old. Split earlobes usually occur as the result of heavy earrings that create a constant pull on the ear. Trauma from an earlobe being pulled can also result in a split or deformity. Earlobe repair and rejuvenation can be an easy in office procedure with little to no down time.
Earlobe stretching is also very popular with young adults and may be fine for the school or the alternative scene, but does not do well in most corporate or professional settings. When the disks are removed the skin of the earlobe will tighten but not completely and leave the earlobe looking too big and too long for the rest of the head and ear. This requires re-designing and shortening the earlobe to take it back to its pre-stretching size. Luckily this also can be an easy in office procedure.
Stretched earlobes require an even more artistic and technically advanced approach. The earlobes must be redesigned by the facial surgeon to keep them in harmony with the rest of the facial features. For aged and thin looking earlobes, injectable fillers can also be used to add volume and correct wrinkles from volume loss.
It is very important to choose the correct facial cosmetic surgeon to perform these intricate procedures as these surgeons have the training and skill required to provide you with the best education, information and best possible results with this surgery.
BEAUTY BOOST [MAY 2009]
AN AFFORDABLE LIFT FOR SPRING as published in B MAGAZINE May 2009
BY DR. KRISTINA ZAKHARY
THERE WAS A TIME WHEN "AGING GRACEFULLY" MEANT NOT FIGHTING IT. THIS IS NOT THE CASE ANYMORE. TODAY THERE IS A GROWING TREND TO LIVE "AGELESSLY" WHICH HAS MORE TO DO WITH UNDERSTANDING THE VARIOUS OPTIONS AND PROCEDURES AVAILABLE TO COMBAT THE VISIBLE SIGNS OF AGING, AND USING THEM TO YOUR BEST ADVANTAGE.
COMBATING THE EARLY SIGNS OF AGING
One of the earliest signs of aging is dull, discolored skin that has fine lines and wrinkles. This can be prevented by establishing good skin care habits early in life, such as daily use of sun block with both UVA and UVB protection, and the use of antioxidant rich products like vitamins C, E, Selenium and green and white tea. If a healthy and warm complexion and impeccable skin tone are desired, they can be achieved by getting on a good skin care regime which involves exfoliation with alpha and/or beta hydroxy acids, together with the use of lightening products to both ward off and reduce the appearance of sun damage and age spots.
To treat those pesky fine skin etchings and lines around the eyes, mouth and cheeks, ask your doctor about, Retin A cream, which is a prescription vitamin A derivative known to thicken collagen and reduce fine lines and wrinkles.
Other non-surgical skin treatment procedures involve laser technology, which can help improve the overall look and feel of the skin. For example, for crepey skin and brown spots, the non-surgical Fraxel Restore laser is an advanced treatment that effectively and gradually creates new healthy skin by stimulating the body to naturally repair aging and photo-damaged skin, without leaving any surface marks or wounds. These non-surgical procedures involve little downtime – usually a few days off work because of swelling and redness.
As gravity starts to wreak havoc on our faces, the lines and wrinkles around the eyes and forehead deepen because of loss of collagen and elastin, and the smile lines become more obvious because of loss or descent of facial fat. Injectable procedures can help by diminishing those wrinkles and restoring volume to the skin.
For those of us fretting about slight sagging tissue in the midface and jowls, but are not yet ready for a facelift surgery,injectable fillers -which are flexible gels- can be injected under the skin, and in front of sagging tissue, to plump and restore the facial contours, leading to a more youthful appearance.
MINIMAL SURGICAL PROCEDURES
Small surgical procedures, such as a mini-lift to tighten slight jowling and sagging neck muscles, or eyelid surgery to remove droopy skin around the eyelids, can involve minimal down time and may be more effective when performed over time, rather than undergoing a large surgery all at once.
A good combination of prevention and maintenance is important. Maintain healthy skin, stay well hydrated and try these above mentioned, in-office procedures to address skin and volume loss concerns. It is always important to do your research and be careful who you allow to treat your face, being sure to choose a physician who is well educated and trained in facial anatomy and surgery. Those who take a proactive approach by helping to repair their skin along the way, age gracefully and appear ageless.
BEAUTY BOOST [FEB 2009]
Choosing The Lift
Age-less Beauty as published in B MAGAZINE in February 2009
By Kristina. Zakhary MD, MSc, FRCSC
Face lift is a surgical procedure that can help patients look younger by lifting sagging facial tissues, tightening loose facial skin and muscles, removing excess facial skin.
Several types of face lift surgery procedures are available, including the standard face lift, the mid-facelift, and the mini face lift. Usually completed on an outpatient basis, these options can be performed using general anesthesia or a local anesthesia and sedation combination.
Creating The Lift
In placing incisions during face lift surgery, cosmetic surgeons aim for the best combination of effectiveness and discretion. Incisions are commonly made within the hairline, and within natural facial creases (for example, the line where the ear meets the side of the face), since these locations usually heal well and hide possible scarring better than other areas.
In most face lift surgery procedures, the incision begins behind the hairline on the side of the head, somewhat above the temple. It then follows the hairline down to the ear, running along the crease between the ear and the cheek, wrapping around the earlobe, and continuing into the lower scalp under the hair. This separates the facial skin from the underlying tissue. The muscles and tissues are tightened, and then excess fat and skin are removed, to improve the appearance of the patient's facial contour. The incisions are then closed with stitches, and the treated area is wrapped in bandages.
This surgery generally results in a noticeable reduction of sagging and age lines in the face, giving patients a refreshed, younger looking, and more vibrant appearance.
The Healing Process
Following face lift surgery, the healing process can last between 2 weeks to several weeks depending on the type of facelift surgery performed. Most patients can return to work and social activities following a standard face lift after two to three weeks, and patients who undergo mini facelifts can expect to return to social activities after 2 weeks. Patients should allow for adequate healing time and expect some postoperative swelling, numbness, and skin discoloration for about two weeks
During this time, pain medication is usually prescribed, and physical and social activity may be limited initially to prevent worsening of the bruising or swelling. For the first few days, the head should be kept elevated and immobile in order to minimize swelling. All incisions and dressings should be kept dry until the surgeon indicates that showering or bathing is okay. Most stitches will be removed in about five to seven days, and the initial face lift results will be apparent soon afterward.
The final result may take several months to occur. Because incisions are made within the hairline and at the junction of the cheek and ear, virtually any scarring will most likely be hidden.
Because facelift surgery has some risks, one of the most important things to consider when deciding on face lift surgery is the training and experience of your cosmetic surgeon. Face lift surgery and other facial plastic surgery procedures are more likely to be successful when the surgeon is very familiar with the specific techniques required.
BEAUTY BOOST [NOV 2008]
THE DOCTOR IS IN TO ANSWER YOUR QUESTIONS AND CONCERNS as published in B MAGAZINE November 2008
BY Dr Kristina Zakhary
PERMANENT OR NON-PERMANENT: A QUALIFIED ANSWER
Q: I AM ONLY 42 BUT I FIND THAT MY FACE IS ALREADY STARTING TO SAG, ESPECIALLY AROUND THE MOUTH AND CHEEK AREA. I AM CONTEMPLATING DERMAL INJECTIONS BUT I AM CONFUSED BETWEEN THE PERMANENT AND NON-PERMANENT TYPE. WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES AND WHAT TYPE DO YOU RECOMMEND I HAVE DONE?
A: : Kristina Zakhary, MD, FRCSC Age-less Facial Plastic Surgery, Toronto
One of the earliest signs of aging is a loss of facial fullness, and sagging tissue. Soft tissue fillers have the unique ability to create a smoother and more youthful look by filling and contouring these changes. Soft tissue fillers are flexible substances that can be injected under the skin, and in front of sagging tissue to improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and plump and re-contour the facial shape. Keep in mind that soft tissue augmentation with fillers does not lift sagging tissue or stop the aging process. If you wish to lift sagging tissues, ask your facial surgeon to discuss surgical options such as a facelift. Non-surgical rejuvenation treatments such as injectable fillers cannot achieve the same results, but may help delay the time at which a facelift becomes appropriate.
Most filler substances work by replacing the lost components of the skin: collagen, hyaluronic acid, and fat. How long the improvement will last depends on the type of filler used, the areas treated, and the ability of the patient's skin to absorb the materials.Temporary fillers usually last between 4 to 6 months, and include human and bovine (cattle) collagen, and hyaluronic acid. Collagen is a natural protein that supports the skin. Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a natural sugar molecule in human skin and is the framework in which skin cells live. All hyaluronic acid products bind water and give the skin volume. Unlike with collagen fillers, no skin allergy testing is needed with HA products. The results with HA fillers tend to last longer than collagen fillers.
Permanent fillers are longer lasting, but the results are not necessarily permanent. The continued aging of your face and variables in your skin's absorption of fillers will affect how long your results last. Examples of "permanent" fillers include autologous fat (one's own fat), and BioAlcamidTM. Autologous fat is harvested from your own body, can be re-injected to enhance facial fullness. Fat injection requires a more extensive procedure than other injectable fillers. Bio-Alcamid™ is a synthetic injectable gel which unlike other injectable fillers, is more secure and has less chance to migrate in your tissues because it becomes covered by a very thin collagen capsule which completely surrounds the gel, holding it in place.
Each filler brings subtle, distinctive benefits. Sometimes more than one filler may be used to achieve the best results. Permanent fillers need to be placed in deeper folds or creases, and provide longer-lasting results, while temporary fillers can be placed closer to the surface of the skin, and allow for more precision with fine lines, and still others can be combined or layered to gradually bring the face into better balance. Before committing to a permanent filler, it is advisable to have a temporary filler placed in deep folds to determine if your expectations are met.
While not as involved as surgical cosmetic procedures, soft tissue augmentation is still a medical procedure. The first and most important choice in your decision making process is selecting a facial surgeon, one who has specialized facial surgery training and a thorough understanding of facial anatomy, to recommend and inject an appropriate filler or other surgical procedure.
Cosmetic Rejuvenation - Calgary Herald - May 6, 2007 (January 2007)
«Elevate» Magazine Press Release (November 2008)
Nip & Tuck
Plastic surgeons from across Canada and the U.S. gather in Calgary for three-day conference
Robin Summerfield, Calgary Herald - Published: Friday, September 14, 2007