It has been available in Europe for a decade; now something called Sculptra is in the U.S. and has been approved by the FDA.
Dermatologist Dr. Jeannette Graf stopped by The Early Show Wednesday to explain how it works.
Asked how Sculptra is different from other fillers that are already on the market, Dr. Graf said, "There are some really fantastic fillers on the market. One is Restylane. This is brand new. It's called Sculptra. It's just been approved for use. What is so unique about it is that it builds facial volume. As you can see in this before picture in the mid-cheek area and the after picture. What's great about this is it works gradually. When you inject it, it's [a] synthetic injectable and quite safe. No allergy. It works gradually."
Dr. Graf injected a patient, Carol, on one side of her face earlier on Wednesday. She targeted Carol's laugh lines, next to the nose.
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"You can see immediately facial volume. This side has not been injected. This side has," Graf explained. "I did one injection. What happens is with this injection is it makes the cheek look fuller and decreases the nasal labial fold. You know what? It is pretty painless. What I'm going to do is simply going to inject. There's Novocain in this. I'm laying down this collagen matrix."
Carol said she felt a slight pressure, but that otherwise the injection was painless.
"As you're doing this, what's happening over the next three months, is she is going to build collagen in this area. That is going to create this beautiful structure that makes this a great tool in the noninvasive cosmetic," Graf said.
The most common area for use, according to Graf, is the laugh line area. "This is where we see aging and facial volume loss. When you have volume loss, what happens is that you get sagging. You get lines. You get wrinkles. You can use it in conjunction with the other fillers. The restylanes and the others. What this does is adds another dimension. It lasts for two years and sometimes longer," she explained.
She also explained that patients will need to get a series of treatments. "But there is no bruising. There is also minimal swelling. So she could actually go put makeup on and go out."
How much does this cost?
"Depending on how much you do, anywhere from 1,000 upwards. But it's for something that lasts two years and over, it's well worth it. And it works gradually," Graf said.
Asked if there are complications, Graf said, "This is a very safe injectable when used correctly. It has to be done by a trained aesthetic doctor, dermatologist, plastic surgeon. You do not want to have anyone other than us who have been trained in its use to inject you."