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Cosmetic Fillers and Wrinkles


Fat Injection Fillers

Ever wish you could move that fat from your thighs to somewhere it might look a little better? Fat injections involve removing small amounts of fat from the thighs, belly, or buttocks and injecting it under the skin of the face. The fat expands the skin, shrinking wrinkles. Because it is your own tissue, there can be no allergic reaction. Results vary and are sometimes permanent.

Poly-L lactic Acid (Sculptra) Fillers

When injected under the skin, poly-L lactic acid (PLLA) stimulates skin cells to make collagen. Poly-L lactic acid is nontoxic and has been widely used in suture material for years.

PLLA is FDA-approved for cosmetic treatment of certain skin conditions in people with HIV. It is often legally used "off-label" to treat wrinkles in otherwise healthy people. It's considered "semi-permanent," meaning results can last for months to years.

Calcium Hydroxylapatite (Radiesse) Fillers

In 2006, the FDA approved calcium hydroxylapatite for cosmetic injection. This cosmetic filler is made of the minerals that give bone its strength and texture. These minerals are ground into tiny particles and suspended in water solution, which is injected under the skin.

In the trial that led to its approval, calcium hydroxyapatite worked significantly better and lasted longer than collagen injections to reduce severe wrinkles.

Polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) Fillers

Polymethyl methacrylate is a permanent cosmetic filler. Before the FDA approved it for that use, PMMA was already being used as a cement for bone surgery.

That's right -- we said "cement." Polymethyl methacrylate doesn't break down. So, unlike biological products, PMMA produces permanent cosmetic results.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Stephanie S. Gardner, MD on January 24, 2015
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