It has never been easier to literally wipe years off an aging face! With the newest fillers in the expert hands of Dr. Jean Chapman, we can now help turn back the clock in just a few minutes. For years, people who wanted to remove certain wrinkles or enhance their lips have used collagen. Although effective, collagen has a few drawbacks. The biggest drawback is that injectable collagen is derived from cultured bovine collagen. Therefore, it requires patients to receive an allergy test to ensure they don’t have an allergic reaction. Secondly, collagen typically lasts a maximum of 3 months vs. the newer injectables that can last 6 months or longer.
The most popular FDA approved fillers are made with Hyaluronic Acids(HA) such as Restylane, Perlane, Juvederm ultra, Juvederm Ultraplus and many more. These are substitutes for collagen that last longer and require no allergy test. That’s because they are derived from cultured hyaluronic acid, a substance found naturally in the body’s connective tissue. To many though, the biggest benefit is that HAs last longer, in most cases at least two to three times longer than bovine collagen. However the newer collagen product called Evolence does last somewhat longer than bovine collagen.
The new buzz in all the beauty magazines is about Restylane, a substitute for collagen that lasts longer and requires no allergy test. That’s because Restylane is derived from cultured hyaluronic acid, a substance found naturally in the body’s connective tissue. To many though, the biggest benefit is that Restylane lasts longer, in most cases at least two to three times longer than bovine collagen.
HA injections are now one of the most popular treatments at LaserMed Skin & Vein Clinic and are helping patients to erase many of the lines and wrinkles that add unwanted years to the face. Radiesse is another FDA aproved filler that is made of Calcium Hydroxyappatite and is used mostly for nasolabial folds or smile lines and building volume and restoring youthful contours in sagging face.
“We’ve in the past chased certain wrinkles and lines and didn’t address the loss of volume or sagging contour as much. Now by addressing those issues with Hyaluronic Acids, Radiesse, and Sculptra, we’re able to not only erase wrinkles but also restore younger looking facial contours,” explains Dr. Jean Chapman, Medical Director of LaserMed Skin &Vein Clinic. Most of HAs and Radiesse require only about 1 to 2 visits per year to maintain a much more youthful appearance.
Sculptra is PolyL-lactic acid that stimulate collagen and elastin in the mid to lower dermis upon injection over 2 weeks to 6 months time. It is injected over several sessions to achieve ideal correction for deep furrows, volume loss in the cheeks, indented scars, prejowl grooves or just to have youthful contour of the face. The results last several years depending on the individual. It is recommended that maintenance single injection session is done on a yearly basis to keep the results last longer.
Above mentioned fillers are among the most popular among physicians and consumers currently but several more fillers have begun clinical testing for future FDA approval. These injectables play a big role in allowing people to maintain their youth without the downtime, discomfort and traditional invasive approach of plastic surgery.
What is collagen?
Collagen is a naturally occurring fibrous protein found in both humans and animals. The body produces collagen to provide structural support primarily for the skin and blood vessels. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body. The collagen used in cosmetic procedure is actually bovine collagen.
Why would I want to use collagen or other fillers?
When a person makes facial expressions, such as smiling, frowning, etc., stress is placed on the natural collagen in their skin. This stress along with chronic sun exposure causes it to wear down over time. This results in the development of facial lines and wrinkles. Collagen, Restylane and other fillers can be used to replace the collagen that has been worn away over time, thereby eliminating the wrinkles or facial lines. Fillers fillers can also be used to enhance volume in lips as well.
Are the treatments painful?
All injectibles are done using a 27-30 gauge needle which minimizes any pain. Most patients describe the feeling as similar to a pin prick. For some sensitive patients, local anesthetic such as lidocaine can be injected just like at your dentist’s office.
What do I look like immediately after the injection?
Mild redness and swelling is seen immediately afterwards, but subsides within hours. You may apply make-up once the redness disappears. Some patients might also experience minor bruising. The final result is usually seen 1-3 days later when initial swelling is gone and the injected material spreads out evenly.
Can the fillers be injected at the same time as Botox or other laser treatments?
Yes. Botox and other laser treatments can be done safely and effectively at the same time.
What areas can be treated using fillers?
Collagen, Restylane and other fillers are commonly used for smoothing facial lines, wrinkles and scars, most notably around the mouth, or for enhancing the volume of the lips. Common areas of use are the nasolabial folds, marionette lines, acne scars, forehead and glabellar region.
Why are some wrinkles removed with Botox and others with Collagen or other fillers?
Collagen and fillers are used for wrinkles seen at rest without facial movements whereas Botox is used for dynamic wrinkles seen with facial expressions. Fillers are used in areas where paralysis of a particular facial muscle would be detrimental. Since collagen and other fillers do not rely upon paralysis of muscles to remove wrinkles it is used in certain areas where Botox is a poor treatment. For example, to use Botox to remove wrinkles above the lips could possibly lead to paralysis of the mouth, which would be largely undesirable. Using Collagen or Restylane in this area would achieve the same result, no more wrinkles, but wouldn’t affect the patient’s use of their mouth for normal activity.
What results can I expect and how soon?
Before a patient can receive collagen injections they must first undergo a skin test to ensure they are not allergic to the collagen. A small test area will be injected and observed over 4 weeks to ensure no allergic reaction. Upon completion of the skin test, collagen can be injected and patients will see results immediately. No skin test is necessary for Restylane acid or calcium hydroxyapatite which is used just like collagen.
How long will collagen treatments be effective?
The effectiveness of collagen varies based upon several factors, including injection site, injection technique, thickness of patient’s skin, and other genetic factors. Generally, patients getting their first collagen treatments will find effectiveness will last approximately 3-4 months. Restylane or hyaluronic acids last 6-9 months and other fillers exist that last up to several years. As patients continue to repeat treatments the effectiveness tends to last longer.
Is the treatment safe?
Yes, the treatment is very safe. Collagen has been used for cosmetic reasons since 1981. While few people have any adverse reaction to the use of collagen or other fillers your LaserMed Skin & Vein Specialists physician will inform you during your consultation of any risks that might exist.
How much does it cost?
Costs are generally $595 per injection site for collagen or Restylane acid but higher for longer lasting fillers. LaserMed Skin & Vein Specialists offers packages that can reduce this cost for patients who desire to be treated in multiple areas. LaserMed Skin & Vein Clinic also offers Care Credit Patient Payment plans. Sign up for our monthly e-newsletters to receive our company rebates and monthly specials!