Injectable Treatments Dermal Fillers
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Dermal Filler Wrinkle Treatments
Juvéderm, Restylane, Radiesse, Bellafill and more in Birmingham, Alabama
As we age, our faces naturally lose fat that supports the skin. The facial muscles are then working closer to the surface, so smile lines and crow's feet become more apparent. The facial skin also stretches a bit, adding to loss of facial volume. Other factors that affect the skin include sun exposure, heredity and lifestyle.
Injectable Dermal Fillers have become an integral part of anti-aging skin care for many women and men. The experienced professionals at Hedden & Gunn Plastic Surgery offer a number of products at our Alabama cosmetic center that rejuvenate your appearance by diminishing facial lines and restoring volume and fullness in the face.
For some patients, surgeries such as a Facelift, Brow Lift or Eye Lift may be the best approach. Nonsurgical rejuvenation treatments cannot achieve the same results, but may help delay the time when consideration of a facelift becomes appropriate.
Types of Dermal Fillers
For many people, the use of dermal fillers is a simple, office-based "lunchtime procedure" that nicely enhances their appearance. Dermal fillers are very predictable and have relatively minimal risks and side effects. Our physicians in Birmingham-Hoover, Alabama will help you determine the best type and volume of filler for your areas of concern.
If your face has lost some of its youthful volume or elasticity due to aging, Hyaluronic Acid Dermal Fillers are one of the most popular kinds of soft tissue fillers. Products formulated with hyaluronic acid replenish the face with youthful fullness by acting like an inflated cushion to support facial structures and tissues.
Hyaluronic acid is a natural substance found in soft connective and skin tissue as well as some cartilage and joint fluids. Dermal fillers forumulated with hyaluronic acid popular at our Birmingham, Alabama practice include Juvéderm, Restylane, Belotero Balance and Hylaform.
Calcium hydroxylapatite is a mineral-like compound found in human bones. It is often used to fill moderate-to-severe creases such as nasolabial folds, marionette lines and frown lines and to enhance fullness of the cheeks and other facial contours. Since no animal products are used, your risk of an allergic reaction is lowered and no skin testing is required.
Radiesse is known to produce very natural results, does not migrate and side effects are rare. Like some other semi-permanent dermal fillers, this product contains small particles that act as a scaffold on which your own collagen grows.
PMMA (polymethyl-methacrylate) fillers contain about 20% tiny PMMA microspheres suspended in 80% of purified collagen gel. A few months after injection, the collagen gel breaks down and your body produces its own natural collagen to fill out the space under the skin.
Bellafill is considered semi-permanent and is most often used to treat medium-to-deep wrinkles, folds and furrows, particularly nasolabial folds. A number of PMMA injections are needed to create volume. It can take up to 3 months to realize the full effects. Thereafter, PMMA offers long-lasting results.
Some patients may want to consider Fat Injections, which use fat harvested from the their own body to add fullness, fill creases or build up shallow contours in the face.
Dermal Filler Candidates
You may be a good candidate for dermal fillers if you:
- Are physically healthy.
- Don't smoke.
- Have a positive outlook and realistic goals for improving your appearance.
Injectable Dermal Fillers are used to plump thin lips, enhance shallow contours, soften facial creases, remove wrinkles and improve the appearance of recessed scars. Fillers can be very helpful in those with early signs of aging or as a value-added part of facial rejuvenation surgery.
In some situations it may not be possible to achieve optimal results with a single procedure. Most fillers do dissipate over time. To maintain your correction, you will need to consider repeating the injection process at intervals.
Your Dermal Filler Consultation
By choosing a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) for your dermal filler treatments, you can be assured that you are choosing a highly-trained, board-certified plastic surgeon. ASPS Member Surgeons must meet rigorous standards for training, ethics, physician practice and research in plastic surgery.
During your dermal fillers consultation, be prepared to discuss:
- Your goals.
- Medical conditions, drug allergies and medical treatments.
- Use of current medications, vitamins, herbal supplements, alcohol, tobacco and drugs.
- Any past treatment with soft tissue fillers, botulinum toxin, lasers or other nonsurgical facial procedures as well as any prior facial surgery.
Your surgeon may also:
- Evaluate your general health and any pre-existing health conditions or risk factors.
- Examine and measure your face.
- Take photographs.
- Discuss your options for facial rejuvenation and recommend a course of treatment.
- Discuss the likely outcomes of using soft tissue fillers and any risks or potential complications.
Your plastic surgeon will carefully explain:
- Your course of treatment.
- The type of filler recommended in your case and why.
- Expected results.
- The longevity of the result.
It is important that you address all of your questions directly with your plastic surgeon and understand all aspects of your dermal filler treatment. It's natural to feel some anxiety, whether pre-treatment stress or excitement for your anticipated new look. Don't be shy about discussing these feelings with your plastic surgeon.
Dermal Filler Risks and Safety Information
The decision to use fillers is extremely personal. You will have to decide if the benefits will achieve your goals and if the risks and potential complications are acceptable.
Complications from dermal fillers are uncommon. Potential risks vary depending on the specific filler used and the relative permanence of the filler substance. The risks include:
- Acne-like skin eruptions.
- Bruising, bleeding from the injection site, swelling.
- Damage to the skin that results in a wound and possible scarring.
- Infection at the injection site.
- Palpability of the filler under the surface of the skin.
- Skin rash with itching.
- Skin redness.
- Under- or over-correction of wrinkles.
These risks and others will be fully discussed prior to your consent. Your plastic surgeon and/or staff will explain any risks in detail. You will be asked to sign consent forms to ensure that you fully understand the procedure as well as the risks and potential complications.
Dermal Filler Procedure
Facial Assessment and Mapping
If you choose to use packaged soft tissue fillers, the plastic surgeon or specially-trained nurse will evaluate your facial appearance and skin tone and examine the areas of your face to be augmented. Strategic points on your face may be marked as the appropriate injection sites for the filler. Photographs may be taken of the areas to be treated.
Cleansing and Anesthetizing
The injection sites will be cleansed with an antibacterial agent. Pain at the injection site may be relieved by use of a very cold instrument to chill the skin, anesthetic ointment to numb the skin or injection of local anesthesia. While not painless, the injections are usually easily tolerated.
Dermal Filler Injections
Injection usually takes only a few moments per site. The process of injecting, massaging and evaluating the result is performed and additional filler is added as needed.
Depending on the number of areas to be treated, the whole process may be as short as 15 minutes or as long as an hour. Once the results are deemed satisfactory, any markings will be cleansed off.
Dermal Filler Recovery and Results
You may be offered an ice pack to reduce swelling and alleviate discomfort. Although the area may feel a bit tender for a day or two, it is usually not painful enough to require any medication.
There is no downtime with dermal fillers. You can resume most activities right away.
Your initial appearance after treatment with any dermal filler may include:
- An "over-filled" appearance to treated areas.
- Mild swelling or bruising.
- Temporary numbness or redness.
These conditions can be alleviated with topical icing and will improve within a matter of hours or just a few days.
The results of soft tissue augmentation using dermal fillers are apparent immediately. The continued aging of your face and variables in the absorption of fillers will affect how long your results last. Although good results are expected from your procedure, there is no guarantee.
Procedure Information © American Society of Plastic Surgeons
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