Dermal Fillers for Lost Collagen
Restylane®, Juvederm®, and More Are Ideal for Lip Injections, Smoothing Wrinkles, and Other Treatments in Denver
One of the primary reasons women and men alike begin to show signs of aging is loss of the skin’s structural support (especially collagen). Denver’s AboutSkin Dermatology team regularly provides consultations with patients who want to address any of a number of facial changes, including volume loss and the development of nasolabial folds and similar creases, thin lips, and facial hollows. All of these cosmetic issues can be attributed to collagen loss and changes in the structural support of the skin. Fortunately, they can also all be minimized and addressed with dermal fillers.
Fillers can restore volume in areas of the face, hands, and chest. Dr. Joel Cohen of AboutSkin Dermatology has participated in numerous clinical trials on dermal fillers—including Restylane®, Restylane Lyft® (face and hands), Radiesse® (cheek and jawline), Voluma® (cheek), Juvederm® (lip, nasolabial folds, and marionette area), etc. AboutSkin Dermatology’s team of Board-Certified Dermatologists has the experience and expertise to treat your volume loss and rejuvenate your skin.
Dr. Joel Cohen is an international instructor, teaching physicians all over the world techniques and applications for dermal fillers. His lessons, lectures, and speaking engagements are based on his years of experience, since he has participated in the clinical trials and injection protocols of MANY facial injectables used for facial folds, lip volume, lip lines, cheek augmentation, jawline contouring, and more. The AboutSkin team is made up of Board-Certified Dermatologists who all work with injectables daily—giving them the focus and knowledge necessary for helping patients to reach their cosmetic dermatology goals.
What Does Collagen Do?
Collagen is a structural protein found throughout the human body. Its main role is to provide flexible structure and support—especially for the skin.
In the skin, collagen not only works as an internal scaffold that keeps tissues elevated in youthful positions, but it also creates space for “storing” other structural components of the skin, such as hyaluronic acid (HA). HA sugar molecules can hold up to 1,000 times their own weight in water, making them critically important for hydration and supporting the skin.
Collagen molecules are not permanent. They actually break down due to both the passage of time and the effects of environmental exposure, such as sunlight.
The body tries to constantly replenish collagen molecules to maintain their presence in the skin, but this natural process begins to slow and taper off as a person ages. Eventually, the creation of new collagen can no longer keep pace with the destruction of old collagen. This causes collagen levels to drop, which leads to a loss of structure, flexibility, and moisture. Dermal fillers can help minimize the appearance of significant collagen loss.
How Do Dermal Fillers Work?
While many dermal fillers in the past contained actual collagen, the most commonly used options today have hyaluronic acid as their base. Facial injectables typically take the form of a clear gel, which adds volume in areas where collagen loss has caused hollowing, drooping, or folds.
By filling in these areas of collagen deficiency, the skin regains more youthful contours, prominences, roundness, and smoothness. While the effect of fillers is temporary, with the body gradually absorbing the hyaluronic acid, many fillers last for months or even a few years (often depending on the movement in the area of placement, as well as the agent actually injected).
What Dermal Fillers Are Available?
AboutSkin Dermatology carries numerous dermal fillers to be able to meet the unique cosmetic need of a diverse range of patients. Some fillers are better suited to specific areas, with benefits that make them ideal in certain cases. Options include:
This HA-based filler can be used to address moderate to severe nasolabial folds and volume loss, as well as for lip enhancement. AboutSkin participated in an FDA trial on Restylane®.
This HA filler adds fullness to the cheeks to address volume loss that causes contour changes. It can also be used on the hands. AboutSkin participated in the FDA trials on Restylane Lyft® (face and hands).
Primarily used for etched lines and lip augmentation, this HA filler is great for imprinted lines (especially wrinkles around the mouth in patients who don’t yet want laser resurfacing).
The hyaluronic acid in this filler helps to soften nasolabial folds and marionette lines while maintaining flexibility and enhancing support of the muscular structures below the skin.
Similar to Refyne®, this option is formulated to smooth and reflate deeper, more severe nasolabial folds and marionette lines.
Juvederm® Ultra and Ultra Plus
Hyaluronic acid-based fillers in this family are ideal for plumping up thin lips and reducing the appearance of nasolabial folds. AboutSkin participated in clinical trials on Juvederm® for the lips, nasolabial folds, and marionette areas.
This HA-based filler lifts and contours the midface, where cheeks can flatten over time. AboutSkin participated in a clinical trial on Voluma® for the cheeks along with Allergan’s portfolio of other products (the Harmony study, which Dr. Cohen coauthored).
Another hyaluronic acid-based filler, Belotero® serves to fill in moderate to severe nasolabial folds.
Radiesse® is a water-based gel that is filled with calcium-based microspheres that trigger collagen production to restore volume to the face (nasolabial folds) and back of the hands. Dr. Cohen has participated in a cheek clinical trial as well as an ongoing jawline contouring trial using Radiesse®.
What is the Dermal Filler Injection Process?
If you are interested in volume replacement with fillers, please consider scheduling a consultation. Board-Certified Dermatology Physicians will meet personally with you to discuss your aesthetic goals, assess the signs of aging and treatment area, and determine which treatment (or combination of treatments) can work best.
Specific treatment details depend on the filler chosen and how much is used. Time, cost, and the expected scope and duration of results will be discussed at the consultation.
Despite the many variables to take into account, dermal filler sessions all typically work the same way: Needles are used to introduce the chosen filler into the appropriate tissue, which takes a matter of minutes. The treated area will likely feel sensitive and may appear swollen or bruised for a short time after the injections. Obviously, not all folds and lines will resolve, but there should be a noticeable improvement seen in photos—depending on how much volume is used.
Are There More Options for Facial Rejuvenation?
While fillers are ideal for addressing collagen loss, other signs of aging require a different approach. Wrinkles that form due to muscle movement are one example. For this condition, dermatologists use injectables known as neuromodulators, which relax the muscles. Options include BOTOX® Cosmetic, Dysport®, Xeomin®, and Jeuveau™. Fillers and neuromodulators can be combined (often leading to a more synergistic effect and even longer duration), as well as incorporated into more global treatment sessions for patients who want to address multiple issues at once.