Where is filler used?
Fillers can be used to fill in hollows under the eyes, restore the cheeks & lips, camouflage jowls, and strengthen bony structures like the chin or cheekbones. Fillers can also be a great option for lip lines, acne scarring, non-surgical rhinoplasty (liquid rhinoplasty), and even to replace volume loss in hands. The choice of filler depends on the goals and the site of injection. However, much more important than the choice of filler is the artistic vision and skill of the injector. Rest assured that at Finn Plastic Surgery, you will only be injected by our extensively trained, double board-certified plastic surgeons. At your consultation, they will educate you on the different treatment options, individualizing treatment plans specific to your needs. They factor in many things when choosing the right filler for you.
Unfortunately, we often see patients who come to us seeking correction from fillers they received elsewhere. Besides being distressing to the patient, this can also be both costly and time consuming.
TYPES OF INJECTABLE FILLERS
The most commonly used injectable fillers are made from Hyaluronic acid (HA), a substance naturally produced by your body with the highest concentration present in the joints, eyes, and skin. Hyaluronic acid attracts water, which in turn hydrates the skin. Injectable hyaluronic acid fillers like Juvederm, Voluma, Restylane, and RHA are used to reduce the visible signs of aging by replacing the lost volume and filling in the fine lines, wrinkles, and deep folds. They also transport water to the surface of the skin, helping it to look even more radiant and supple. Hyaluronic acid fillers provide immediate and long-lasting results with an excellent safety profile. Oftentimes our surgeons will use a combination of fillers to rejuvenate many different areas of the face. This has been described as a “liquid facelift.”
For patients with more volume loss, Sculptra (poly-L-lactic acid) may be an option. With Sculptra, a solution of dissolvable crystals is injected under the skin, stimulating the body to create its own collagen over several months. Several treatments may be necessary, and the process happens gradually.
Radiesse is another injectable filler, with unique properties. It is made from calcium hydroxylapatite, a mineral-like compound found naturally in human bones. It can also be used in multiple areas, but typically does best in the cheekbones, chin, nose, and hands. Radiesse is also frequently used in patients with HIV that are experiencing facial atrophy. It is a long-lasting filler.
PRE AND POST-TREATMENT
We advise our patients to avoid any blood thinners like ibuprofen or naproxen (including Motrin, Aleve, and Advil). Additionally, supplements such as Vitamin E, multivitamins, omega 3 fatty acids (fish oil and flaxseed oil), and herbal supplements for at least two weeks prior to receiving filler. This will reduce the chances of bruising post-injection.
Fillers are generally tolerated very well. We have a protocol to help minimize discomfort during your injections. This includes giving patients the option of using a topical numbing agent prior to treatment. Almost all our injectable fillers have lidocaine already mixed in them, which helps a great deal to minimize pain. The actual injections will only take about 5-10 minutes to perform. Once the desired results are attained, most patients come in one to two times a year to maintain their results.
There is no significant downtime associated with filler treatment. We do advise patients to make sure their social calendar is clear for a couple of days afterward, especially if it’s their first-time having filler. The main post-injection side effects include swelling and bruising. We will give you a re-freezable ice pack at your visit; some patients find it helpful to continue to ice at home the day of their injections. If you do bruise, you are welcome to return to our office for a quick laser treatment. We use the V-Beam Perfecta (a pulsed dye laser) to target the pigment in the bruise, causing it to break up and dissipate much faster. We offer this treatment complementary to our injectable patients for post-injection bruising.