Collagen is a naturally occurring protein found in the second layer of skin (the dermis) which “plumps up” the skin, joints, bones and ligaments. Injections counteract the effects of gravity, sun exposure and years of facial muscle movement by filling out sunken areas and smoothing lines for a rejuvenated look. Results may begin to fade in a few months, depending on the patient’s age, genetic background, skin quality, lifestyle and body site. Because of this, and because injections cannot improve severe wrinkles or deep folds, the procedure is often combined with facial resurfacing or plastic surgery for more a satisfying and longer-lasting outcome.
Acne is the term for the blocked pores (blackheads and whiteheads), pimples, and deeper lumps (cysts or nodules) that can appear typically on the face, neck, chest, back, shoulders and upper arms. Seventeen million Americans currently have acne, making it the most common skin disease in the country. While it affects mostly teenagers, and almost all teenagers have some form of acne, adults of any age can have it. Acne is not life-threatening, but it can cause physical disfigurement (scarring) and emotional distress.
Acne scarring can be treated in a variety of ways as well. These include:
- Soft Tissue Fillers
- Laser/Pulsed Light Treatments
Chemical peels remove damaged outer layers of skin on the face to smooth texture, reduce scarring, and remove blemishes and pre-cancerous growths to produce healthy, glowing skin. Peel formulas and strengths are tailored to each patient. Peels can be combined with other procedures such as facelifts for a younger look. They may be covered by insurance if they are performed for medical rather than cosmetic reasons.
Fat injection reduces wrinkles and creases and plumps up areas that have lost volume as a result of surgery, injury, aging or another cause. Transplanted fat that comes from the patient him- or herself does not carry a risk of allergic reaction or rejection. Other advantages include a short recovery time, long-lasting results and effectiveness on any skin type.
Dermabrasion removes a layer of surface skin to improve the appearance of facial scarring due to acne, chicken pox, injury or other causes, as well as uneven pigmentation, wrinkles, sun damage, tattoos, age spots and certain kinds of skin lesions. The skin is frozen, typically with a spray, and then abraded with a high-speed rotary instrument for a dramatically smoother, fresher look. After the procedure it is normal to feel a sensation similar to sunburn for a week or so, at which time most patients are able to return to work. The newly revealed skin will likely appear pinker than usual for two to three months. Patients should be sure to adequately protect skin from sunlight.
Microdermabrasion improves mild to moderate sun damage, scarring, wrinkles and other superficial skin problems. A gentle stream of tiny particles exfoliates the outer layer of skin and provides a fresh, glowing, younger appearance. The particles scrape away the surface layer of aging or damaged skin, which is then brushed off with the microdermabrasion vacuum tool with no need for anesthesia. Only a small amount of skin is removed, so sensitive areas such as the face, chest, neck, arms and hands can be treated. Results are comparable to a light chemical peel and should be immediately visible. Microdermabrasion is often performed in conjunction with other skin renewal procedures, such as laser treatment and chemical peels. Multiple treatments are recommended for full effect.
Laser skin resurfacing, commonly called a laser peel, removes the outer, damaged layer of skin to reveal a smoother, younger look. Laser resurfacing can reduce the appearance of sun damage, wrinkles, fine lines, uneven pigmentation and superficial scarring, usually on the face. A carbon dioxide (CO2) laser beam of precisely focused light vaporizes the surface skin and reveals the undamaged layer beneath. Procedure time varies depending on the size and condition of the area being treated.