Dermatologists and plastic surgeons alike welcomed a new injectable when Bellafill was approved by the FDA last December. Like familiar dermal fillers Restylane and Juvederm, plastic surgeons can use the filler to correct those tiny smile lines that bring millions of people to a doc’s office each year.

For many, the more exciting aspect of Bellafill in particular is its ability to treat acne scars. The FDA approval extends to treatment of moderate to severe scarring from facial acne, which means your derm will also start carrying Bellafill. Even more impressive: According to a new study, the filler remains effective for five years.

Dr. Ruth Tedaldi, a Boston-based dermatologist who uses Bellafill in her practice, says she recommends the filler to patients who are comfortable with a longer-lasting effect. Unlike other fillers that are easily dissolved with an antidote injection, Bellafill was designed primarily for long-lasting correction.

In the five-year study on the use of Bellafill in the nasolabial folds (aka smile lines), 1,008 patients received treatment across 23 U.S. study centers. Eighty-three percent of patients were satisfied with the treatment.

A similar 2007 study of the side effects of hyaluronic acid found that the injection is more likely to be harmful in the short term than over weeks or months. Just like with any injectable, there’s a risk of inflammation or bruising at the injection site, and a slight risk of infection.

The good news is that hyaluronic acid has a low risk of long-term adverse reactions. We’re just grateful that studies like these keep our long-term safety in mind, especially when it comes to injections in the face. 

If you’re considering Bellafill, head to the website to consult the handy guide to finding a provider near you.

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