Soft tissue fillers, also called dermal fillers, facial fillers, or simply “fillers”, are used to fill up defects in the soft tissues, typically wrinkles, folds and dents in the face. Some fillers are intended to add volume, for example to the cheekbone or the chin and are often used for lip enhancement.
There are many products on the market. The most important distinction is between non-permanent fillers, which disappear spontaneously after a while, and the permanent fillers, which stay embedded in the tissues forever. Most non-permanent fillers are quite safe to use, but it is advisable to demand fillers that are generally accepted, or FDA approved, such the ones based on hyaluronic acid, collagen and calcium hydroxyapatite microspheres. Always demand to know which product your physician is going to use.
Fillers are injected directly into the area to be treated, often after application of a topical anesthetic cream. The effect is immediate, and lasts between two to 18 months, depending on the type of product and the treated area.
Ensure you consider all aspects of a procedure. You can speak to your surgeon about these areas of the surgery in more detail during a consultation.
The procedure takes approximately 10-20 minutes.
Usually topical anesthetic cream, sometimes a local anesthetic injection.
This is an outpatient procedure.
Transient swelling (mainly when used in the lips), redness, tenderness, and bruising. Cold application after treatment can minimize these side effects.
There is widespread consensus that, although they may seem appealing, permanent fillers are not to be recommended lightly as they sometimes induce adverse reactions which are very difficult if not totally impossible to treat without surgery. For all fillers, risks include irregularities or lumpiness, over- or under-correction, asymmetry and infection. Permanently visible lumps or late reactions with some permanent fillers can result.
If present, swelling and redness usually settles after 24 to 48 hours. Most patients can go back to their activities immediately with some make-up.
Partial or complete correction of wrinkles and folds. Enhancement of facial features.