Synthetic Wrinkle Fillers continued...
All the fillers in this group have similar side effects. Redness, swelling, or bruising at the site of the injection is one of the most common. Other possible side effects include nodules or bumps under the skin that can be seen and felt and that, in rare instances, may require surgical removal.
The benefits of this category include a longer-lasting effect. And at least one filler offers permanent filling of lines and creases. Products with longer-lasting effects are more likely to cause side effects. When not used correctly, however, synthetic wrinkle fillers may cause permanent disfigurement.
Synthetic wrinkle fillers include:
Collagen Wrinkle Fillers
One of the first wrinkle fillers developed was made from a purified form of collagen extracted mostly from cows. Although it worked well and offered a natural looking line and crease fill, the results didn't last long. Most collagen injections began to break down as soon as one month after treatment. Because these wrinkle fillers were made from an animal source, they also had a higher rate of allergic reaction and required allergy testing before treatment.
New ways of processing the collagen have helped reduce risks. In addition, new forms of synthetic collagens are making these injections safer and more useful for a wider range of people. Although the results are generally shorter lived than other wrinkle fillers, many believe the results are better and look more natural.
Side effects of collagen injections include some risk of allergic reaction (mostly for those still using bovine sources) as well as bruising and redness at the site of the injection.
Collagen injections include:
Autologous Wrinkle Fillers
This category includes wrinkle fillers made from substances, usually fat, taken from your own body. The fat is normally taken from the thighs, buttocks, or stomach. They are most often used for fine lines and creases on the face.
Though these aren't commonly used, they can be an option for some people.
Risks for these injections are similar to other wrinkle fillers, including bruising, redness, and swelling at the site of the injection. You need, though, to have two procedures (one to remove the fat and one to inject it). Both, though, can be done in one visit. Additional purification steps taken in the lab can be costly and time consuming. Results can be permanent, although you may need a series of injections. Because the fillers come from your body, these injections do not require FDA approval.
Minimizing Risks and Increasing Good Outcomes for All Wrinkle Fillers
Wrinkle fillers are among the safest cosmetic procedures in use today. But there are also things you can do to help ensure your treatment is safe:
- Don't let price be your guide. If you are offered a wrinkle filler treatment that costs far less than the standard treatment, it's likely some compromises are being made, either in the skill of the provider or the quality of the product. Never risk making a bargain with your face.
- All wrinkle fillers should be done in a medical setting with sterile instruments. Treatments done in homes, hotels, spas, or resorts are not being done in medical environments, regardless of who is doing them.
- Do not get injectable wrinkle fillers from sources outside a doctor's office. Know what you are being injected with, and ask your doctor if an FDA-approved wrinkle filler is being used and if it was purchased directly from the maker. There have been reports of everything from industrial-grade silicone to baby oil to unapproved fillers being used. If a provider won't give you information about what will be used, don't let that provider do the procedure.