Category Archives: Medicines & Sciences

Features medical breakthroughs and the latest in healthcare through informative articles

Holistic Grooming

One of Malaysia’s premier aesthetics academies, Stella-In International Advanced Aesthetics Academy has groomed generations of aestheticians and beauty professionals. It was established by Madam Stella Hong in 1980 and is accredited by international examination boards of Confederation of International Beauty Therapy & Cosmetology, UK (CIBTAC), Comite International d’Esthetic et Cosmetologie, Zurich (CIDESCO) and International Federation of Aromatherapy, UK (IFA). Recognising the academy’s contribution to Malaysia, the Ministry of Tourism appointed Stella-In as Malaysia’s Official Centre of Excellence to train Spa Therapists in 2011.

Not content is being just providing vocational training, Stella-In has paved a continuous education pathway for its students, enabling them to acquire higher qualifications. The Academy is in collaboration with Chisholm Institute of TAFE that allows its students to transfer credits of their qualifications at Stella-In to Chisholm TAFE for further studies in Diploma in Beauty Therapy and Bachelor in Health Science (Dermal Therapies) at Victoria University (Melbourne). In this regard, Stella-In is a pioneer, being the first aesthetics academy in Malaysia to forge such a path for its students.

Stella-In is headed by Madam Stella’s son, Leslie Hong. Injecting vigour and helping bring the Academy to new heights, Leslie is an expert in the field of aesthetics. He is a Colour Analyst and Image Consultant who has the distinction of being one of the first in Southeast Asia to be certified by Canada’s International Image Institute. This Property Estate Studies and Management double-degree graduate from New Zealand followed his mother’s footsteps and joined the family business because of his passion for the industry. ‘Aesthetics is not just making people look beautiful, but helping people as well. I saw my mother helping clients with acne recover; then when the clients’ skin got well, she would put make-up for them and groom them. You could see the joy in the customers. That really inspired me,’ said Leslie.

Leslie Hong,  Chief Executive Officer of Stella-In International Advanced Aesthetics Academy
Leslie Hong,
Chief Executive Officer of Stella-In International Advanced Aesthetics Academy

With over 18 years of experience as an artistic director, make-up artist and master trainer for Stella-In International,  Leslie is credited with leading the Academy to its international recognition and positioning as one of, if not the, leading aesthetics academy in the region. ‘Nowadays, people look towards brands and recognition, awards and achievements. The evolution of Stella-In from the 1980’s to now is one in which we have positioned ourselves very well in terms of accreditation,’ he explained on the success of Stella-In in bridging vocational training and tertiary education with leading institutions in Australia.

Besides having a passion for the aesthetics field, Leslie is passionate about community service. He is an active Lions Club member, having served the organisation as its president in the past and spearheading his club’s Prosthetic Limbs Project which has been instrumental in providing prosthetic limbs to those in need since 2006.

With his interest in Lions Club and his mother’s life-long quest to help people, it is no surprise that Stella-In has a culture of doing social work. ‘In business, we feel that most important thing is that we have to care for the society through community service works,’ said Leslie. ‘We are involved in social outreach programmes such as fund raising for local hospitals, and providing massage training for the blind at St Nicholas’ Home, among others.’

If a lasting career in aesthetics is what you’re looking for, make Stella-In your top consideration as a quality education centre. To find out more information, call +604 228 3833/ 227 3833 or visit

Fungi: Another human threat alert!

Fungi make for one of the three major microorganisms behind human diseases. They are not commonly tested in this part of the world merely because this region is not a fungi disease-endemic area. When we are sick, the common tests to go for over here are either for viral or bacterial diseases.

With increasingly attractive travel deals and cheaper airlines, international travelling has become a common leisure in today’s contemporary living. If you are a frequent traveller, has it ever crossed your mind that you could possible be the unlucky one to acquire something alien from a foreign country like fungi, especially if you feel sick after travelling? And if you are a physician, have you ever considered those diseases that are endemic in regions where your patients have travelled to as the most probable cause of a disease?

There are many common diseases contained to selected regions in the world that are not commonly known to other parts of the world. Some are not fatal, but the illness can take a long time to get diagnosed and treated just because it is not something common outside the country of its origin. There are many such cases that are being misdiagnosed and mistreated, with the patients failing to get better under the name of having an unknown disease. It may start with harmless symptoms like a common cold or flu in the early stage.

There are many common diseases contained to selected regions in the world that are not commonly known to other parts of the world.

Valley Fever is one of those diseases haunting Southwestern United States and parts of Mexico, Central America and South America. Coccidiodes is a fungus in the soil that causes Valley Fever. Inhaling in one spore can cause lifelong infection, turning your life upside down. It is often mis-diagnosed as bacterial pneumonia, tuberculosis or cancer.

You could acquire one or more of these conditions when the spores disseminate in your body; hydrocephalus (having harmful spinal fluid pressure on the brain), verrucose ulcers (wart like outgrowths on the surface of organs and skin), arthralgias (joint pains), myalgias (muscle pain), otomycosis (fungal infection of the external ear canal), hypercalcemia (extra calcium in the blood that can be fatal) and other terrible conditions.

Anyone can get Valley Fever, including children. It is most common among elderly above 60. Other high risk groups include Asians, African Americans, women in their third trimester of pregnancy and people with weak immune systems.

If you love travelling and especially love to explore exotic places like Arizona, be warned. Get to know their exotic threats and be prepared.