Patients frequently come to see me as they get older. They realize the shape of their face has changed. Alterations in both the amount and position of facial fat contribute to the changes. Full, round cheeks, which taper smoothly towards a jawline that is sharp and well defined characterize a youthful appearing face. This smooth transition is disrupted by the downward movement of facial fat. The cheeks flatten as facial fat shifts resulting in deep nasolabial folds (smile lines) and wrinkles. Numerous innovative injectable fillers have been developed to restore facial volume by filling contour depressions and softening wrinkles and folds.
These fillers offer a minimally invasive, non-surgical approach that significantly improves appearance. They are not a replacement for surgery but enable us to treat many of the stigmata of aging in a safe and effective manner with minimal downtime.
After a thorough discussion of the non-surgical and surgical options available, I often find that patients are intrigued by Sculptra®Aesthetic, one of the newer FDA-approved choices available for volume restoration in the aging face. The unique effectiveness and longevity of Sculptra®Aesthetic distinguishes it from other FDA-approved fillers, such as Juvederm™, Restylane®, and Perlane® that utilize hyaluronic acid gel.
Sculptra®Aesthetic stimulates the production of the skin’s own collagen. It is composed of a biocompatible material, poly-L-lactic acid (PLLA). Gradually over 3 months, a structural network of collagen forms in the area of treatment, improving facial volume by thickening the skin. A natural looking result progressively emerges. A more youthful facial contour is restored and the depth of facial folds and wrinkles are diminished for up to 3 years. There has been a very high degree of patient satisfaction with the use of this technique.
As the skin gradually thickens, the effect is assessed to determine the need for additional treatment. The number of sessions required varies depending on the responsiveness of your skin to the process of collagen stimulation. Generally, 2-4 treatments at 6-week intervals are necessary to achieve the desired outcome.
As the collagen slowly diminishes at 3 years, additional treatments are performed to maintain the results. Note these other points:
- Sculptra®Aesthetic is injected with very fine needles. This is very well tolerated with the application of a local anesthesia numbing cream to the skin.
2. Because the face contains many tiny blood vessels, minor swelling and bruising may occur for a few days. This may be diminished by the application of Auriderm, a post-procedure Vitamin K gel and cold packs. However, it’s best not to schedule a procedure immediately before a major event.
3. The cheeks should be massaged for 5-10 minutes twice a day for a week after the procedure to evenly distribute Sculptra®Aesthetic.
Dr. Bryan G. Forley is a New York Plastic Surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. A graduate of Brown University and the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, he trained in general surgery at NYU Medical Center and Mount Sinai. And completed his residency in plastic surgery at the Saint Francis Memorial Hospital in San Francisco followed by fellowships in aesthetic surgery and craniofacial surgery. Dr. Forley is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.
He specializes in cosmetic surgery of the face, eyes, nose, breast, and body and Fraxel laser resurfacing, injectable fillers, and BOTOX Cosmetic
Visit Dr. Forley’s site at http://www.drforley.com/