Surgeon Creates New Hands from Old Hands

Noted plastic surgeon notes increasing popularity of “hand lift” procedure to repair aged looking hands and help improve their appearance.

Wrinkly, veiny, “old-looking” hands no longer must be endured as part of aging thanks to “hand lift surgery” performed by plastic surgeons such as the noted Professor Laurence Kirwan.

“Veins and tendons underneath the skin of the hands become more noticeable as we age. However, it can happen much earlier for some people,” Kirwan said.

Professor Kirwan is an internationally recognised leader in aesthetic plastic surgery with clinics in London, New York and Norwalk, Connecticut.

As people age, the dorsum (top of the hand) begins showing its age. Wrinkles and “age spots” appear and the fatty layer underneath the skin thins.

The areas between the tendons and veins become more noticeable as the as the skin becomes more shrivelled and translucent. Bones, tendons and veins also become more noticeable.

However, a new “hand lift” procedure harvests fat, often from the abdomen, using tiny cannulas (tubes or straws used to extract fat cells). Then it is purified and injected into the dorsum, filling in those gaps between the tendons and veins.
The outpatient procedure lasts about an hour and is performed either under sedation or local anaesthesia. The stitches dissolve and patients can return to light activities in a day or two with little post-operative pain.
Kirwan said the procedure is increasing in popularity as the population ages.

Other potential procedures don’t produce the same results as the hand lift, he said.

Simply removing excess skin is not a good solution since it leaves scars, has greater risk of complication and doesn’t heal well.

The hand lift also lasts longer than simply injecting filler such as Radiesse or Sculptra and has less potential for absorption by the body, Kirwan said.

In addition to fat injection, the veins can be ligated through small incisions. Skin can be tightened using Thermage and the brown spots can be treated with Fraxel Clear and Brilliant Therapy cobined with lightening creams.
Professor Kirwan was born in Liverpool, England, graduated in medicine from Manchester University in 1974 and became a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in 1979.


Professor Laurence Kirwan MD, FRCS, FACS, is recognised as an international leader in aesthetic plastic surgery. He has clinics in Harley Street, London, New York City and Connecticut, USA. He specialises in aesthetic plastic surgery of the face, breast and body. He is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS). He also is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) and an active member of the prestigious American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS). ASAPS members are required to perform a minimum number of aesthetic procedures each year to maintain membership. Both ASAPS and ASPS only admit physicians certified by the ABPS. The ABPS is the only Plastic Surgery Board recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties. It oversees physician training in the US. The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery is the most prominent Society of its kind, representing a ‘gold standard’ for excellence and innovation in Aesthetic Plastic Surgery worldwide. ASAPS meetings and approved educational activities draw surgeons from around the globe. Many UK surgeons make an annual pilgrimage to the Society’s meeting and symposia.

Professor Kirwan was born in Liverpool. He graduated in Medicine from Manchester University in 1974 before becoming a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in 1979. He trained in General Surgery at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center in New York City. Then he completed Residencies at the Universities Denver, Colorado and Kansas City, Missouri. He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and Professor of Plastic Surgery of the International School of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery at the University of Belgrade.

He was named one of Tatler magazine’s Top Surgeons in its Cosmetic Surgery Guide for the years 2004 and 2007-2012.He was named the “Top Breast and Tummy” surgeon for the past two years. He was included in the London Evening Standard’s 1,000 Most Influential People report for the years 2007-2009. Professor Kirwan is also featured in The World’s Top Surgeons & Clinics, published by Beyond Black Publications. Russian Vogue listed him as one of the Top 20 Plastic Surgeons, worldwide.

Professor Kirwan is a frequent contributor to current affairs programs on television and is an occasional contributor to magazines and newspapers. He has published three books: “The Cutting Edge: A Top Surgeon Tells All,” about plastic surgery; “My Mole Book,” a guidebook for children, explaining what happens when a mole is removed; and “Ophelia Blue Eyes: My Life So Far,” a biography of Ophelia Sarah Kirwan, the professor’s own daughter, who was born with Down syndrome. All are available through either Artnik Publishers or

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