Lipodystrophy, Sculptra and Bio Alcamid
Dec 10, 2006
Hello, I'd like to share some of my experience with facial fillers. I have had 7 treatments of Sculptra over a 4 year period, 3 done in Tijuana in 2002, and 4 done in the Los Angeles area in 2005. The latter treatments were done by one of the two doctors who ran the trials for FDA approval in the U.S. As such, he has been working with Sculptra far longer than most in the States, and is quite skilled with his technique. Having said that, my Sculptra treatments were only lasting a year at best. My point here is that body chemistry DOES factor into how long Sculptra may last, regardless of the skill of the surgeon.
Due to the short-lived results, and the continuing costs to keep my face "full", I chose to fly to Vancouver, Canada this last week to give Bio-Alcamid a try. Unlike Sculptra, Bio-Alcamid is a permanent gel filler (although it CAN be removed should any contour be overfilled). Additionally, the Canadian government, in association with the manufacturer, is currently offering a subsidy for those who qualify. This means the overall cost of Bio-Alcamid may be competitive with, or cheaper than Sculptra, even including the plane ticket (see faceforward.ca for more info).
My overall evalaution is this: Sculptra looks great, but it does not last, so the costs to maintain that "healthy look" can really start to add up over the years. It IS FDA approved, however, so that endorsement may make it feel safer to many readers. Bio-Alcamid is not FDA approved, but it IS approved by the Canadian government's equivalent. I did a lot of research online about Bio-Alcamid, and finally decided that for my money, a filler that does not need to be replaced every few years (or in my case, every year), plus the blessings of the Canadian government, were good enough for me. I will write again as I live with the filler for a while, but as of right now, I'm pleased with the results.
Response from Dr. Henry
Thank you for sharing your experience in this forum. Please report on your experience in a year or so since your major issue with the Scuptra is the transient benefit so it will be important to see if your satisfaction with Bio Alcamid is longer lived. I am impressed with the support you describe from the Canadian government for these techniques-tres bien! KH
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