Injectable fillers have revolutionized plastic surgery. If you are not using fillers, you are missing an opportunity to look younger. Current evidence suggests that fillers stimulate collagen production in our tissues. This exciting finding suggests that the use of fillers not only makes us look younger, but also may slow or even partially reverse collagen loss associated with aging.
Fillers versus Botox
Fillers have an entirely different purpose than Botox. Fillers give plastic surgeons the ability to add volume to an area of the face. We can use fillers to improve a crease or to restore lost volume to an aging cheek. Injectible fillers can dramatically improve your face with minimal down time and can achieve adequate improvement for many people without surgery. For those wanting to get the most out of their facelift, fillers can significantly improve results compared to surgery alone.
|Before Filler||After Filler|
|Bags under eyes and cheek deflation||Restored volume after filler|
Types of Facial Fillers
Hyaluronic Acid Fillers
You have probably heard of Juvederm, Restylane, Perlane, Prevelle Silk or Belotero. These products are the most common hyaluronic acid fillers that we use. Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a substance that naturally occurs in the skin and body. Fortunately, it can be made in a lab, and we can inject it into the face to add volume to the desired areas. Initial results can last 6 months or longer, but it gets better. These fillers actually stimulate your body to produce collagen, increasing the amount of your natural tissue. As a result, touch up treatments typically require less filler to get the same result. Additionally, subsequent treatment results last longer. It is common for touch up results to last more than a year!
Non Hyaluronic Acid Fillers
HA fillers are versatile and most commonly used; however, there are injectable fillers made of other substances. Collagen, Radiesse, Sculptra and Silicone are the most common non-HA fillers available. These additional varieties of fillers may be preferred in specific situations, but some should be avoided.
Collagen was the most commonly used filler prior to the development of hyaluronic acid fillers. It is harvested from human or animal sources, purified and formulated into an injectible gel. Collagen has two major disadvantages. First, a test dose is necessary to rule out allergy to the product before use. Second, collagen does not last nearly as long as the more commonly used fillers in use currently.
We typically inject Radiesse more deeply than HA fillers and use it to fill larger areas. It works well for adding volume to the cheeks, temples and nasolabial folds. Radiesse is made from a material similar to substances found in our bones, called Calcium Hydroxylapatite. This crystalline material is made into a gel that can be injected. Radiesse stimulates collagen formation and you can get results that last 12 months or longer. It is used for deep injection and can work like an injectable facial implant.
Sculptra is different from other fillers because it stimulates the body to produce collagen, rather than providing volume. Several injections are generally necessary, spaced weeks to months apart. The result is gradually apparent as your body builds collagen in response to the injection. Sculptra is great for people who do not need an immediate result. The benefit of patience is longevity. Results from Sculptra are thought to last 18 months or more. This filler is made of Poly-L-Lactic Acid, a material commonly used to make absorbable stitches used during surgery.
Silicone is used safely for many applications in medicine like pacemakers, joint replacements and breast implants; however, it is NOT safe for use as an injectable agent. When used as an injectable filler, silicone causes scarring, calcification and can be disfiguring.
Typical Uses of Injectible Fillers
Once your Botox has kicked in, filler can be used to improve any residual frown lines between the eyebrows. Additionally, this spot is an area where people tend to lose volume as they age. HA fillers, like Juvederm, can improve this.
We can use HA fillers to improve the tear trough creases that form between the lower eyelids and cheeks. You can get better lower eyelid lift results when we use filler to improve the blending between the eyelids and cheeks. This is a great example of the synergy that occurs when invasive and minimally-invasive procedures are combined.
Injectible fillers can re-inflate the cheeks to restore volume lost with aging. Fillers can also re-shape the face and act as an injectable facial implant for those seeking to improve facial proportions without surgery.
These creases form above your mouth as your cheeks droop with age. HA fillers can reduce the creases for a smoother contour. Usually, about 50% correction gives the most natural result.
Full lips are a sign of youth and femininity. Women, in particular, lose volume in the lips as they age. We can make a dramatic difference by using HA fillers to replace your lost lip volume. Women are often nervous about trying this, because they are nervous about their lips looking too big. The goal is not to make your lips big. Our goal is to restore a normal amount of volume. Lips are often the most neglected area in facial rejuvenation and attention to this critical area can take your result to the next level.
These creases form in front of the jowls, below the corners of your mouth. We can use HA fillers to improve these folds and add support to lift the corners of your mouth. This is often done in combination with Botox injection of the depressor anguli oris muscles (DAOs).
Most people lose volume in their temples as they age. Fillers replace the volume in the temples and help restore a more tapered, youthful facial shape. Filler in this area can help lift the brow and contribute to a more natural appearing brow lift result.
Aging hands have less fat under the skin, revealing the outlines of tendons and veins. Injectible fillers can restore lost volume and make hands look younger. Plastic surgery is often used to rejuvenate the face, leaving your hands as the most obvious telltale sign of age. Fortunately, filler can rejuvenate your hands to match your refreshed facial appearance.
What to Expect if You Have a Injectible Fillers
Location of procedure: Office
Length of procedure: 15-60 minutes.
Length of stay: Outpatient (home same day).
Discomfort: Mild. Tylenol with suffice.
Swelling and bruising: Mild. It will improve over 2-5 days.
Presentable in public: 0-2 days
Final result: 1 day – 1 week, depending on location and amount of filler.
Result Longevity: Touch up recommended at 6 months for HA fillers, subsequent result expected to last 9-12 months.
Filler Cost: Price based on number of syringes of product used. Visit our average cost page.
Conclusions on Injectible Fillers: Fillers rejuvenate the face and hands by restoring lost volume and improving facial proportions with minimal downtime. Fillers appear to stimulate collagen production which may lead to improved soft tissue and skin quality as an additional benefit.