In the past, there was no practical option for removing or reducing such surface imperfections. However, today a number of different methods can be employed – including injections – to produce smooth, clear skin and attractive facial contours. If you're considering an injection procedure to smooth your skin, the following information will provide you with a good introduction to the available options. For more detailed information about how these procedures may help you, we recommend that you schedule a consultation with Dr. Kremer.
Frequently asked questions about Skin Injection Treatments by Dr. Michael A. Kremer:
During the consultation, you and Dr. Kremer will discuss the changes that you would like to make in your appearance. He will explain the different options available to you, the procedure itself, and its risks and limitations as well as the kind of anesthesia required.
Be sure to ask all the questions you have about the procedure. Learning everything you can about your options, risks and benefits is the key to making an informed decision.
Injections are most commonly made between the surface layers of the skin and the underlying fat. The material that you and Dr. Kremer decide upon is placed into a syringe. A needle is placed under the skin at the site of correction, and the material is injected along the lines of the wrinkle, scar or other recessed area. The injectable material plumps and tightens the skin, thereby smoothing out the skin contour.
Injectable procedures are performed on an outpatient basis in the office. In more extensive or combined procedures sedation may be required. Collagen and Cymetra can almost always be injected without anything other than a topical anesthetic cream.
Time, of course, depends on the extent of the procedure, which normally takes between 15 and 60 minutes.
The amount of pain during an injection treatment varies from patient to patient. However, the discomfort associated with injectables is relatively mild. In many cases, injectables are given without anesthesia.
Patients may experience some discomfort during and immediately following the procedure. Injections done on the cheek, chin and close to the eyes are usually less painful than those around the lips, but this varies from patient to patient. If you are particularly concerned about pain, be sure to discuss this with Dr. Kremer before the day of the procedure.
For the first 24-48 hours following the procedure, most people experience some swelling and redness at the site of injection. Itching and very mild discomfort is not uncommon. However, most of these symptoms fade away within a day or two.
The recovery period for injection treatments is relatively short. Bruising is usually minimal, and swelling depends on the extent of the procedure.
Patients should stay away from activities that can aggravate the injection site. Heavy exercise and alcohol consumption should be avoided for the first few days following the procedure.
Most patients who have had an injectable procedure are pleased with the results. The treatments can, in many cases, significantly reduce facial wrinkling and sagging skin. However, most injection treatments have a relatively short life span. Collagen is quickly absorbed by the body, and most of the filler from these injections disappears within a year. Other injectable materials are associated with more frequent side effects. Be sure to discuss all of the various options with Dr. Kremer, who will help you to decide which is the best option for you.
Alloderm - A portion of the sheet alloderm may remain permanently, or it may eventually be completely absorbed. In any case, it lasts longer than most injectables, including collagen. There is not enough long-term information on Cymetra to know if a portion of it will last permanently, but early reports suggest that it probably will not.
Collagen -Standard collagen will be completely reabsorbed within a few months. Autologen lasts somewhat longer. Some lucky patients may have collagen last 5-6 months, but most will find that 3-4 months is typical. Occasionally, it lasts only 2-3 months. While they like the results, some people are frustrated by the need for frequent injections.
Fat - A portion of the injected fat will remain in place permanently, but a second or even third procedure may be needed to completely correct sagging or wrinkling. Fat is perhaps the only injectable material available for recreating a youthful look in those patients requiring large volumes for a fuller, more youthful-looking facial structure.
In general, the best candidates are:
- Individuals with scarring, sagging or wrinkling on the face
- Individuals with loss of fat, plumpness or high contours of the soft tissues in the face
- In good physical health
- Psychologically stable
- Wanting to improve their appearance
- Realistic in their expectations
- Aware of the options and the limitations
This is only a partial list of the criteria that Dr. Kremer will consider in determining whether or not this procedure is appropriate for you. Be sure to ask Dr. Kremer if he considers you an ideal candidate for injectable treatments.
Recently, a new method of fat injection has gained popularity. This procedure is called lipostructure. Like fat injections, this treatment calls for a removal of fat from the patient's own body. However, lipostructure is significantly different from traditional fat injections because it attempts to keep these fat cells alive. The idea behind lipostructure is that by keeping the fat cells alive, they will not be reabsorbed into the body, and the results will last longer.
Consult Dr. Kremer to see if lipostructure is an option for you.
One of the risks associated with injectable procedures is the risk of infection. However, under most circumstances, this risk is minimal. Depending on the filler material that you and Dr. Kremer choose, there may also be a risk of an allergic reaction or rejection of the material by your body.