- Medical Name: Injectable Fillers
- Common Name: Wrinkle Fillers, Lip Augmentation, Lip Injection, Lip Fillers, Lip Rejuvenation, Lip Plumping, Juvederm, Collagen, Fat Transfer, Restylane, Radiesse, Fillers
- Anesthesia Type: Topical Anesthesia
- Procedure Duration: Varies
- Recovery Time: Varies
- Procedure Location: Office
About Injectable Fillers
In youth one has well-balanced and proportionate facial volumes along with smooth facial contours. The lips are full, cheekbones are prominent, the area under the eyes is soft and the face is wrinkle-free. As we age, the soft tissue of the face thins and the skin slowly wrinkles, skin loses elasticity and begins to lax, and the lips thin and wrinkle.
Facial volume and lip enhancement can be effectively rejuvenated or enhanced to a fuller shape with filler injections. Fillers include Juvederm, Restylane, Radiesse, fat, collagen and others. Fat is the longest-lasting filler followed by the hyaluronic acid-derived fillers such as Juvederm, Restylane and Radiesse. These fillers are by far the most popular today. Both human- and bovine-derived collagen is still available, but the short-lived results have made it seldom used today.
Injectable fillers are commonly used in the following facial areas: lips, under the eyes (eye bags), the nasolabial folds (the lines that run from the outer aspect of the nose to the corners of the mouth and sometimes further down to the chin), cheeks and to plump deep creases, lines or wrinkles.
Please see fat transfer for more information on this procedure.
Ideal Candidate for Injectable Fillers
The ideal candidate for injectable fillers is one who has lost volume and desires to refresh their appearance. He or she is in good health and has reasonable expectations for the procedure.
Benefits of Injectable Fillers
Fillers are the most popular method to restore volumes lost with age. When expertly administered, hollowed eyes, deep creases and rejuvenated lips have a natural, more youthful appearance. Fat is another popular option as it is a “natural” implant that avoids the risks involved with using synthetic implants, such as implant rejection, transmittable diseases and autoimmune reactions.
Fat lasts longer than injectable fillers like Juvederm, Restylane and Radiesse, and fat is a refined and safe technique for volume restoration. However, patient satisfaction with fat transfer and fillers is very high and costs less. Injectable fillers and fat are soft and pliable and have a natural appearance when administered well.
Risks and Limitations to Injectable Fillers
Injectable fillers are very safe and have a very low complication rate. Fillers are not permanent, so you should expect to have touch ups every 3-5 months to maintain fullness. Expect swelling and possible bruising that may last days after injection.
Although fat transfer is a very safe procedure, every surgical procedure has risks of complications. Risks involved with a fat transfer include bleeding, infection, bruising, allergic reaction to sutures, scarring and numbness. About 30% of the fat will resorb, so touch ups may be necessary. However, fat transfer is the longest lasting of the injectable options.
A word of caution: Excessive amounts of filler or fat administered in multiple areas (particularly excessive use to cheeks and eyes) can lead to an unnatural, puffy appearance. Express your goals to your surgeon, and choose him or her wisely.