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What are dermal fillers?

Dermal fillers containing Hyaluronic Acid (HA) are injectable gel implants, intended for the treatment of any deep skin depressions which are mostly caused by aging. They are made from a fully absorbable cross-linked, non-animal, hyaluronic acid (HA). Hyaluronic acid, also known as Hyaluronan, is a naturally occurring sugar in the human body, mostly in the skin and in the joints. Its presence helps to increase moisture, elasticity and flexibility. 

How do Dermal Fillers (Hyaluronic Acid) work?

Injected into the skin HA helps to improve appearance of aged skin by reducing water loss. In order to avoid rapid degradation HA is also produced in a cross-linked form and once injected under the skin it works as a filler as it fills skin depressions.

What results can I expect after the treatment with Dermal Fillers containing HA?

Treatment with hyaluronic acid dermal fillers can help to create a smoother and fuller appearance of the face. They are frequently injected into nasolabial folds (deep depressions on each side of the mouth extending towards the nose), peri-oral lines (so called smoker/smile lines), Marionette lines (the creases which run from the mouth corners down along the chin). They can be also used for face contouring and volume restoration to correct facial structural defects such as asymmetry, contour deformities, volume loss in the lips, cheeks, chin and lower face. They are also used for redefining the shape of the tear troughs.

When and how long do HA Dermal Fillers work?

This depends on the area treated and type of filler used. On average the results last anything between 6 months to up to 2 years. The results are immediate, but it might take couple of days achieve the desired shape.

Are there any special preparation before the Dermal Fillers treatment?

No special preparation are needed. On the day of the treatment the patient does not need to be fasting. Patients taking Aspirin, anti-coagulants (Warfarin), non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (diclofenac, ibuprofen etc) may consider to stop taking them for a week prior the treatment, in order to minimalize bruising and only after consultation with their physician. For the same reason it is also recommended to stop taking supplements like Omega 3, garlic, Vitamin E.

How long is the treatment?

This depends on the extent of the problem and the number of areas treated. As a rule the procedure does not take longer than 30 to 45 minutes.

Is there any anesthesia needed?

This also depends on the type of the treatment. In some cases a topical anesthetic (numbing) cream is applied. Certain areas of the face are more painful and require an injecting of a small amount of anesthetic solution. Most of dermal fillers contain Lidocaine, which is a well known anesthetic agent.

What are the potential side effects and complications during and after the treatment with HA Dermal fillers?

Like with any surgical procedure side effects and complications may occur. The most common are:
Inflammatory reactions such as redness, swelling, discomfort, pain, itching or pressure. These reactions might last up to a week. Swelling is especially often seen after injection in the mucous membrane (lips). Bruising, if occurs it usually resolves within 7-14 days and may be covered with a makeup. Bleeding and haematomas are possible, though unusual Induration and nodules at the injection site. Staining or discolouration of the injection site Poor effect or weak filling effect. Abscesses, granulomas (small bumps), necrosis (tissue death), Hypersensitivity reactions (allergic reactions) Certain degree of asymmetry, but one needs to remember that human face is not perfectly symmetrical. The product may produce a positive result in anti-doping tests.

What are the contraindications for the treatment with HA Dermal Fillers?

Contraindications and special precautions include patients suffering from porphyria, untreated epilepsy, those who have tendency to develop hypertrophied scars and/or keloids, and those who have known hypersensitivity to hyaluronic acid or/and lidocaine. Patients suffering from rheumatic fever with heart complications as well as from acute and chronic inflammatory/ infectious skin conditions, especially if the treated areas are involved; patients with the history of recurrent streptococcal disease; patients with bleeding disorders; patients using immunosuppressant. Pregnant and breastfeeding women as well as patients younger than 18 years old. Dermal fillers must not be injected simultaneously with skin resurfacing procedures such as chemical peelings, dermabrasion and lasers.

What are the aftercare instructions?

For the first 24hours following treatment one should avoid strenuous exercise, excessive sun or heat exposure as well as alcoholic beverages in order to help to minimize the risk of redness, swelling and/or itching. For swelling one may apply ice pack for 10-15 minutes hourly in the first 12-24 hours.
Most of patients apply their make-up and perform their normal activities straight after the treatment.

Since nothing can stop the aging process one will require top-ups in order to maintain the effect.