Fillers

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What It Is ?

Injections that contain volumetric substances are called filler, used as a cosmetic form of treatment. They are used mainly to smoothen out  scars on the skin or wrinkles that appear on one’s face. They are also used by some people to make the lips appear fuller. When this injection is used beneath one’s skin, the filler has the effect of puffing up the area. The puffiness fades away after a short period of time. There are different types of fillers available in Malaysia and they include:

    CosmoPlast and CosmoDerm (a collagen that is prepared in the laboratory)
    Cymetra which is a collagen that is derived from human tissue
    Juverderm, Captique, Restlylane which are forms of hyaluronic acid . It works by drawing more fluid into the area where it is used
    Zyderm, Zyplast which is collagen of bovine nature. One has to do an allergy reaction test four weeks before they can use this filler treatment
    Sculptra which is a man-made polymer that is biodegradable
    Radiesse also known as calcium hydroxylapatitie
    Autologous fat which are fatty cells that are derived from one’s body
    A combination of Artefil (a bovine collagen) and plastic beads that is microscopic. The beads contain poly (methyl methacrylyte). The bovine collagen tends to wear off after a while but the beads remain under the skin forever.

Malaysians need to know that there are practicing doctors out there who use fillers that have not been approved by FDA or the Food and Drug Administration. Always check with your doctor before you make the final decision on what treatment will suit you best.

Before these fillers injection, it will need you to get your skin numbed before they can be administered. Fillers of a collagen nature contain a medicine that causes numbness. The process is then undertaken by a dermatologist or a cosmetic surgeon. He or she will use a needle to inject the filler underneath the skin. The duration of the treatment usually lasts fifteen minutes. In some cases, the fillers have to be injected repeatedly over few sessions, have to be spaced out few weeks from each other.

Why ?

After undergoing a filler injection treatment, one should expect some redness, pain, swelling and in some cases itching. The swell may go on for as long as 36 hours.
If you notice that the symptoms are getting worse 1 to 3 days after you underwent the treatment, inform your doctor right away. That points towards a possibility of an infection.

Are Filler Injections Effective?

Depending on which filler is used, the area where it will be used on and the body’s reaction to it, most people will have to undergo a repeat treatment for best result.

Different kinds of fillers last for different durations. Your body will absorb the filler a little at a time. This is what causes the skin to return to its normal appearance.

    Zyderm, Zyplast which are bovine forms of collagen last for 2-3 months.
    CosmoPlast and CosmoDerm (a collagen that is prepared in the laboratory) lasts for 2-4 months.
    Juverderm, Captique, Restlylane which are forms of hyaluronic acid has an effect that lasts 9-12 months.
    Cymetra which is a collagen that is derived from human tissue has an effect that lasts 3-4 months.
    Autologous fat which are fatty cells that are derived from one’s body can last for months and run into years.
    Sculptra which is a man-made polymer that is biodegradable can last for a period of two years.
    Radiesse also known as calcium hydroxylapatitie has an effect that lasts for 12 months.
    A combination of Artefil (a bovine collagen) and plastic beads that are microscopic lasts for as long as 5 years.

Just like any other cosmetic procedure out there, the results vary and sometimes there may be results that are different from what you were expecting.

The Risks ?

Filler related injections can lead to other problems most of the time. Here are some complications that one may encounter:

    Allergic reactions that present themselves as swellings, rashes, flu like symptoms or hives.
    Lumps on the skin that appear right after the treatment, can be just temporary.
    Bruising or possible bleeding. Note here that one should stay away from alcohol and medicine used to thin blood. Such medicines include vitamin E, aspirin or any forms of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
    An infection. You should contact your doctor as soon as you notice pain, redness or swelling after the first day of treatment. You may need to be treated with antibiotics.

That said, rarely are there reports about a life threatening problem after filler injection treatment. However, there may be complications that include sepsis, anaphylactic shock, the occurrence of a blood clot in the retinal artery which results in blindness, occurrence of a abscess that may need to be drained or a complete breakdown of the skin, also known as necrosis.

Points to Ponder

If you are constantly dealing with herpes simplex or zoster problems you need to know that you are at risk of getting a fare up if you use filler injections. If you have to deal with herpes outbreaks every so often you will be required to take antiviral medicines before you can undergo filler treatments.

A single syringe that contains filler would cost you a couple hundred dollars. The cost will of course depend with the type of filler you are opting for. Communicate with your doctor about how much filler you will need, the cost and how often you will have to receive that treatment. It is highly unlikely that health insurance will cater for this form of treatment. There is a solution for every Malaysian who has sagging skin. Filler treatment is the best option.