Category Archives: Fillers

Renee Zellweger and Plastic Surgery?

What happened to Renee Zellweger?

I’m a surgeon who does cosmetic procedures.  I guess I should try to answer this question.

Gosh, I’ve gotten a LOT of questions about Renee Zellweger and Plastic Surgery.  Probably because I work in our Modesto Plastic Surgery office: Surgical Artistry.  Most of these questions come from my Modesto Botox patients.


Picture of Renne Zellweger Before and After

I am not a big TV or film follower or even a celebrity follower and thus, I didn’t really study what Renne Zellweger looked like before.  I guess she really shocked the public when she showed up in public with a different look.

It doesn’t look “fake” to me

My conclusion is that she probably had “work” done such as Botox, Fillers, brow lift, and belpharoplasty (eye lid surgery).  But much of the before and after pictures I’ve seen on the internet do show signs of aging on her face.  Most notable to me is around the eyes.  Her eyebrows are now sitting a bit lower as a result of graceful changes with age, and it looks like she has less redundancy (rolls) on her upper eye lid – perhaps she has had surgery there – just a speculation on my part – and perhaps also on the lower lid.  She doesn’t look like she has had a eye-brow lift (different from working on the upper and lower lids around the eye) – because her eyebrows would be much higher.  Some plastic surgeons include browlifting as part of facelifting.  She is 45 years old now.  If she has had any plastic surgery done, it looks to me to be tastefully done for someone in their mid 40’s.  I wouldn’t say that it’s bad plastic surgery – not at all.

Her Surgery was…?

Perhaps the only SURGERY she has had, not counting Botox and Fillers (which we love), is an upper blepharoplasty and lower blepharoplasty – if I may guess.  And I think the other differences in her look my be mostly due to graceful aging and Botox/Fillers.  Striking differences in the before and after picture are:

  • After picture shows Lowered eye brows – perhaps from forehead botox, and possibly from upper eye lid blepharoplsty
  • After picture shows Rounder cheek – perhaps from fillers
  • Less of a square face – probably from natural aging or from Botox for masseter muscle reduction or for the medical treatment of pain from TMJ.
  • And perhaps she had fillers to change the Nasolabial fold lines, Marionette and fillers in the lips – subtle changes.

Above is all a guess from me.  She chose some nice options if the above list is part of what she chose to have done.  We do those procedures too at my office:  Surgical Artistry in Modesto – Plastic Surgery, Botox, Dermal Fillers, Veins, and Acupuncture.

Graceful aging changes the jawline – starts out square-ish in life

Perhaps she doesn’t look like the Renne Zellweger we knew when she was 20-30 years old.  I would say that in my 40’s I look completely different from when I was in my 20’s also – and most of that isn’t because of plastic surgery or Botox, etc.  She has lost some squareness in her jawline, but this is normal with aging.  It’ll happen to all of us, if not already.  And her hairline seems higher.  I don’t see anything to indicate that she has had a facelift.  But Botox and Fillers – possibly Botox for the forehead, glabellar and crows feet.  Some of the forehead Botox might explain the lower setting of the eyebrows too in addition to normal aging.

Just be Happy that she’s happy

I think that the most important thing is that Renee feels happy about any plastic surgery done on her face – she she has had anything done.  And she seems happy with it – so perhaps we should let her be happy.

I am not Renee Zellweger’s Plastic Surgeon

Disclaimer:  I’m just guessing at what she had done.  I am a surgeon in the field of cosmetic surgery.  My wife is a plastic surgeon.  I am a general surgeon who spends most of the time in the office doing fillers (ie. Juvederm), Botox, Veins, acupuncture, and plastic surgical assisting.  Thus I spent a great deal of my life with plastic surgery patients.


A Recent Botox and Dermal Filler Review for Calvin Lee, MD in Modesto, CA

Botox and Dermal Filler review for Calvin Lee, MD Modesto, CA

Botox and Dermal Filler review for Calvin Lee, MD Modesto, CA. November 2013.

The review can be found here:

I have saved other (older) plastic surgery and botox reviews here.

Thank you very much for the Botox and Juvederm and Boletero review. It’s very much appreciated. And I will continue to do my best to improve and live up to those high standards written in these very kind reviews. (209) 551-1888
(209) 551-1888



Belotero Balance a new Dermal Filler from the makers of Radiesse


Belotero Balance vs. Juvederm – initial thoughts in Modesto, CA

Today I used two syringes of Belotero Balance and two syringes of Juvederm in today’s line of work.  I’m happy to report that Belotero didn’t disappoint.  I’ve done many tear troughs before with Juvederm and I’ve always injected deep.  For Belotero, I injected more superficially.

For both syringes which I’ve used, I mixed in a small amount of Lidocaine with Epinephrine.

Belotero is a dermal filler which was recently approved by the FDA in December of 2012.  Belotero FDA approval.

The Belotero Balance Syringe


This is much smaller and much more ergonoic than their Radiesse syringe also made by Merz.

There was no cracking or splitting of the syringe which I’ve sometimes seen when I attach the Juvederm to my 3 way valve.  I could probably get a better connector; however, the three way valve is something that is handy in my office because I use it  for vein sclerotherapy in it’s foamed version.

The syringe itself is smaller than the the Juvederm syringe; thus it made it somewhat easier to inject initially where the thumb doesn’t have to stretch out as far.  It’s a small advantage for those with small hands – such as me.  I think this was done on purpose – to make the syringe shorter.

There were, however, some parts of the syringe that snap off – perhaps this is on purpose.  The luer lock itself came off when I first connected it to the 3 way valve.  The flanges for the syringe itself also slides off, and when playing with the syringe after injecting the product, the rubber tip of the plunger can also become dislodged.   Regardless, these are very minor issues – which mostly arise because I like to fiddle with the syringe itself.

Initial Conclusions on Belotero in my Modesto practice

On injection, it feels smooth, and can be easily molded after injection into the skin.  I used one syringe on tear trough and the other syringe on the accordion type lines around the side of the skin.  I used a superficial approach to these lines – in attempt to use less product.  It seems to work well.

It is on the opposite spectrum of their other product – Radiesse – which is a harder substance.  Belotero is very soft and pliable but lacks the intense hardness and lift capacity of Radiesse.

I believe that Belotero has a place in the palette of “paintbrushes” we use in our cosmetic injection craft.  But I think that more than one syringe is necessary to fill out fine line wrinkles in faces.

Disclaimer:  Much of what is discussed above is considered off-label FDA usage of Belotero and Juvederm Dermal Fillers.  More info about my Belotero Dermal Filler practice.  Belotero has been mispelled – sometimes as Boletero, Bolotero, Belotora, Belatoro.  “Belotero” is the correct spelling.  An example of a dermal filler consent form, see an example of the Radiesse consent form. (209) 551-1888
(209) 551-1888

Surgical Artistry FaceBook – Modesto Plastic Surgery

I tend to get wordy – scroll down to the bottom for the summary of the three worthy FaceBook pages related to Surgical Artistry in Modesto, CA.


How do I find the Surgical Artistry page on FaceBook?

This is confusing because somehow FaceBook has a page created for Surgical Artistry – but regardless of how I try to “edit” that page – it doesn’t take my “suggestion” for redirecting to a page we created – which we consider the “official” Surgical Artistry FaceBook Page.

The Official Surgical Artistry FaceBook Page – I figured that Modesto Plastic Surgery described best what we did.  Looking at our services – there is more to Surgical Artistry than just Plastic Surgery.

Birth of a second Official Surgical Artistry FaceBook Page

However after a while, some of my patients thought I (Calvin Lee, MD) should have a page of my own relating to Botox, Juvederm, and other Dermal Fillers.  So we created:  On this page we talk about things like cannulas for cosmetic injections, dermal fillers for lip augmentation, and perhaps even cosmetic acupuncture.  this page is more related to the stuff I do, but with a slant on cosmetic injections and dermal fillers.

Wait, there is yet another FaceBook page

Worth mentioning is my “personal” FB page – everyone is welcome to find me there.

The URL is – I like Modesto so much that yes, it has become my FaceBook vanity URL.

Summary of the three FaceBook pages:

  1. Surgical Artistry Modesto Plastic Surgery FaceBook – slant on plastic surgery
  2. Surgical Artistry Modesto Botox FaceBook – slant on Botox
  3. Calvin Lee Personal FaceBook – everything Modesto (209) 551-1888
(209) 551-1888

9 Habits of Highly Successful MD Cosmetic Injectors

My list of 9 habits of “Highly Successful MD Cosmetic Injectors.” I’ve spent the last few months hovering around internationally renown MD Cosmetic Injectors.   I participated at a Palette Injectors meeting / training for Level III injectors in Sacramento, and I also at the 2013 Vegas Cosmetic Surgery Meeting.

botox bottles

This is my partial collection of empty Botox bottles.

Here are some success habits I think these great injectors have in common.

1. Most of the MD injectors are the injectors of their practice without delegating to a nurse or PA
2. They are constantly looking for newer and better ways to do things.
3. They are eager to explore new products.
4. They selectively use cannulas for some of their injections.
5. They are very willing to share / talk / publish.
6. They make injections a priority in their practice.
7. They often go back to basics which includes knowing the anatomy, and exploring new anatomical concepts.
8. They are not be afraid to show off their grey hair – but will make some attempt to hide their wrinkles.
9. Most importantly they do not view fillers or Botox as a COMMODITY. In other words, it’s not a Botox per unit price or cost per syringe of Juvederm (the PRODUCTS), rather it’s the injector’s SKILL which is the true value. And this is how they provide the best VALUE – through the best skill and materials.

There are also a great number of amazing Nurse and Physician Assistant injectors. I haven’t had the opportunity to attend sessions and lectures by them (yet – I’d like to see what makes them successful as well, so it’s on my list). All the lectures and meetings and demonstrations that I’ve attended in the past few months were by Surgeons and Dermatologists.

Also, these aren’t necessarily “habits.”  It was just a catchy title.  These are more like “attributes” or “traits.” (209) 551-1888
(209) 551-1888