Medicis, Mentor Launch M2VP Loyalty Program

Inspired by the best practices of leading medical and non-medical customer rewards programs, the new M2VP (Medicis-Mentor Valued Partner) program is intended to provide physicians value and convenience, executives from the collaborating companies say. Regardless of the level or volume of aesthetic services performed in their practices, dermatologists, plastic surgeons, facial plastic surgeons, and oculoplastic surgeons who use Medicis' skincare brands or cosmetic injectables or Mentor's line of breast implants in the non-reimbursed arena can earn incentives and rewards under the new program, now rolling out nationwide.

The M2VP launch marks the start of a five-year collaboration between Medicis and Mentor. According to Ryan Weldon, President of Medicis, and David J. Wilson, Worldwide President, Mentor Worldwide LLC, the program was designed to improve on perceived weakness in existing loyalty programs while emphasizing true value to customers. To that end, the new initiative offers opportunities to earn points that both serve to establish program status and can be redeemed for products or product discounts. While those who use multiple different products or use them in higher volumes will see greater rewards, Mr. Weldon and Mr. Wilson insist that even growing practices will benefit from the unique new program. “We wanted to make sure physicians could use any of our products without losing out,” Mr. Weldon says. Importantly, there is no penalty for not using products.

The program is aimed at providing value to physicians while partnering with them. “For us, it's another way to put our stake in the ground to show that we are committed to this specialty,” Mr. Weldon observes.

Transparency and convenience are fundamental to the program, the companies say. Customer status information, points, eligible rebates, and other account information will be accessible to all participants online. “We want to be sure customers understand the value and benefit of the program,” Mr. Weldon remarks. “We want to be sure we're able to explain it in a very simple way so customers understand it and understand what's different about it,” adds Mr. Wilson, noting that M2VP took inspiration from leading points programs like the Star Alliance and American Express Rewards.

Aesthetic physicians and surgeons can learn more about the program from their respective sales representatives.

Alphaeon Acquires US License To Teoxane Laboratories' Dermal Fillers And Cosmeceutical Products

Alphaeon Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Strathspey Crown Holdings, LLC, has acquired an exclusive US license for the full line of products from Teoxane Laboratories. Containing 100 percent non-animal origin, resorbable hyaluronic acid, Teoxane's dermal fillers are currently available in many markets outside the US. As part of the relationship, Alpheon will market the full line of Teoxane hyaluronic acid-based dermal fillers and cosmeceutical products to credentialed physician specialists (CPSs). In addition to the partnership agreement, Teoxane Founder and Chairwoman Valerie Taupin will join the Alphaeon Board of Directors. “The partnership with Teoxane Laboratories is a great fit for Alphaeon, as both companies possess an unparalleled commitment to delivering science-based, high-quality medical aesthetic products,” said Robert E. Grant, CEO of Alphaeon, in a statement.

ASDS Launches Fellowship Program and Database

To help residents with the challenge of identifying suitable fellowship programs, the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery's (ASDS) new database, called the DermSurg Fellowship Finder, is a comprehensive source for all dermatology fellowships in the US. The goal of the Fellowship Finder is to broaden awareness of advanced dermatologic surgery and training opportunities among dermatology residents. The database includes contact information and program descriptions.

In addition to the Fellowship Finder resource, the ASDS has launched its own fellowship accreditation program designed to promote post-residency training in cosmetic dermatologic surgery procedures. According to ASDS President Timothy C. Flynn, MD, fellowship training will give young dermatologists a solid educational foundation and better prepare them for the increasing consumer demand for elective procedures. The program will be based on six core competencies: patient care, medical knowledge, practice- based learning, interpersonal skills, professionalism and system-based practice.

ExtendCredit Launches “Cosmetic Credit Plans”

“Cosmetic Credit Plans” is a fully automated, customizable in-house financing software solution created specifically for the cosmetic surgery industry, offered by ExtendCredit (www.extendcredit.com). The software enables cosmetic surgeons to offer their own financing to patients, with the ability to automate the entire process. Patients are automatically billed each month, receiving email reminders prior to each debit and auto-reattempts on missed payments. ExtendCredit also manages missed payments on behalf of the practice, ensuring that staff can focus on serving clients without wasting time making collection calls. The platform can also be expanded to create membership programs.

Merz Acquires Neocutis' Skin Care Division

Merz Pharma Group has acquired the cosmetics, over-the-counter, and prescription skin care businesses of Neocutis. The company's North American division will integrate marketing of Neocutis' line of physiciandispensed topical skin care products in the US. “Neocutis' line of topical skin care products complements our current portfolio of aesthetic injectable products and expands our ability to provide patients and physicians with innovative, high-quality aesthetic products along the full continuum of care,” President and CEO of Merz North America Bill Humphries said in a statement. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. The deal also comes several

Research Briefs

IncobotulinumtoxinA Found Safe, Effective for Glabellar Frown Lines

A single dose of 20 U of incobotulinumtoxinA is both effective and well tolerated in the treatment of glabellar frown lines in as little as 30 days, according to new published findings. Researchers assessed 271 patients with moderate to severe glabellar frown lines at maximum frown (as assessed by an investigator) according to the facial wrinkle scale (FWS). Patients were randomized to 2:1 to receive one treatment of 20 U of incobotulinumtoxinA or placebo and were assessed over 120 days. The primary efficacy variable was a composite endpoint consisting of patients who were two-point or more responders at maximum frown on Day 30 according to the investigator's rating on the FWS, and two-point or more responders at maximum frown on Day 30 according to the patient's assessment on a four-point scale. Findings revealed that incobotulinumtoxinA was more efficacious than placebo by a statistically significant margin.
—Dermatol Surg. 2013 Jun; 39(6): 891-9

Split-Face Study Finds Little Difference in Efficacy Between High-Priced and Affordable Cosmeceuticals

With the cosmeceutical market expanding, the need for objective standard criteria for assessing the efficacy of cosmeceuticals remains imperative. With this in mind, authors of a new split-face study topically applied highpriced cosmeceuticals on one side of patients' faces and more affordable cosmeceuticals on the other side. They then compared efficacy over an eight-week period using non-invasive bioengineering technology. Importantly, they observed no significant difference in the change between the high-priced cosmeceuticals and the lesserpriced products. A subjective questionnaire demonstrated also that the participants in the study perceived no difference in efficacy between the two products. These results, the authors concluded, underline the essential need for objective standard criteria for measuring efficacy of cosmeceuticals.
— Skin Res Technol. 2013. Mar 11

Reviewing Severe Complications with Soft-Tissue Filler Injections

Although the safety profile for soft tissue filler injections is favorable, adverse events do occur, ranging from mild to severe in intensity. In a new study that identifies facial sites most prone to severe complications, authors reviewed 41 published articles, finding 61 patients with severe complications. They collected data ranging from filler type, injection site, complication site, symptom interval, symptom of complication, time to therapy, modality of treatment, to outcome. Among the more notable findings was that blindness was most often associated with injection in the glabella, with roughly 50 percent of cases occurring in that area. In addition, a review of societybased filler data and case reports revealed an estimated incidence of 0.0001% for developing a severe complication. The authors concluded that although severe complications with soft-tissue fillers for facial rejuvenation are rare, physicians should nonetheless be aware of the serious potential adverse effects, recognize their presentations, and have appropriate treatments readily available.
—Aesthet Surg J. 2013 Aug 1; 33(6): 862-77