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What are synthetic fillers for treating wrinkles?

Synthetic fillers (Artefill, Radiesse, Sculptra) are used for filling facial wrinkles and folds. It takes less than an hour for synthetic filler injections, and the results can last anywhere from six months to five or more years, depending on the filler product. Synthetic fillers differ depending on the brand:
  • Artefill contains 20% polymethyl-methacrylate (PMMA) beads suspended in 80% collagen. A few months after injection, the collagen breaks down, sparking your body to produce its own natural collagen to fill in the space. Unlike other fillers, Artefill is not absorbed by the body.
  • Radiesse is an injectable calcium hydroxylapatite gel. Calcium hydroxyapatite is found in teeth and bones and is used for numerous medical applications including cheek, jaw, skull and chin implants. Another brand name is Radiance.
  • Sculptra is an injectable polylactic acid. This compound is used in numerous medical products, such as stitches and screws used to repair broken bones. Although Sculptra has only been approved to restore shape and contour to the faces of those with AIDS, it is often used "off label" for cosmetic treatments. Sculptra usually requires three monthly treatments to rebuild the lost volume. It may take up to four to six weeks to see the full effect, and while Sculptra is considered semi-permanent, you may need an occasional touch-up treatment.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.