Facial Wasting Correction in Beverly Hills
Recapture the Full, Plump Facial Features of Youth!
Lipoatrophy, the medical term for facial wasting, refers to the subcutaneous
fat loss in the cheeks and temples, resulting in a bony, emaciated, or
“sunken” facial appearance. This condition occurs when fat
wastes away from the fat pads in the cheeks, the temples, below the cheekbone,
and alongside the nose. Lipoatrophy can be part of an overall condition
known as Lipodystrophy Syndrome (LDS), which ranges from mild to severe,
and can occur synonymously with other symptoms, such as fat loss in the
limbs and buttocks, and fat accumulation in the abdomen. Facial wasting
is a debilitating condition that can have a negative psychological impact
on patients who suffer from it. Facial wasting has many causes, including
aging and weight loss and medication effects.
Facial wasting (facial lipoatrophy) is a condition of the face wherein
areas of fat are reabsorbed, causing sunken-in cheeks, very prominent
cheekbones, loose facial skin, and hollow temples.
Facial wasting has a number of causes, including, but not limited to:
- Long-term use of nucleoside analog anti-HIV drugs (particularly Stavudine
- The natural aging process
- Very low BMI or body fat percentage
- Eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa
- Elevated triglycerides.
- HIV/AIDS, cancer, and other diseases resulting in extreme weight loss
If you are seeking out a Beverly Hills facial wasting correction procedure,
contact us today at (310) 928-2558!
Loss of fat deposits in the face is a natural part of aging. A study published
in “Aesthetic Plastic Surgery” documented the natural loss
of volume that occurs throughout the aging process, and how this volume
loss causes one’s face to appear gaunt and sunken in. Diseases such
as cancer and HIV, and the treatments utilized to fight these diseases,
can also result in facial wasting. In the past, lipoatrophy was linked
to the use of various anti-HIV prescription drugs, including Zerit®
(stavudine, d4T), Retrovir® (zidovudine, AZT) and Videx® (didanosine, ddI).
According to the Program for Wellness Restoration, (a 501(c)3 non-profit
organization that disseminates information about lipodystrophy) there
are four grades of lipoatrophy. Patients with Grade 1 lipoatrophy show
minimal signs of facial wasting symptoms and have a relatively normal
facial appearance. Grade 2 lipoatrophy involves deeper fat loss in the
face, and the early appearance of visible facial muscle, especially around
the cheek and mouth area. Patients with Grade 3 lipoatrophy exhibit deeper
and wider facial wasting symptoms and the facial musculature is clearly
visible. Grade 4 lipoatrophy symptoms are noticeable on the entire surface
of the face, and facial muscles protrude prominently from the skin.
Best Options for Facial Wasting
Dermal fillers are generally the best course of treatment for patients
suffering from facial wasting symptoms. Sculptra, Juvederm, and Radiesse
are three of the most frequently utilized dermal fillers that can be used
to replace the fat lost during the course of facial wasting and to restore
volume to the face. Sculptra causes scar tissue and fat to collect where
it has been injected, and Radiesse stimulates the body to produce new
collagen while delivering an immediate, natural-looking facial restoration.
Every patient’s facial wasting symptoms are unique, and during your
consultation, Dr. Gabbay will assess your facial wasting symptoms, and
provide a customized course of treatment to resolve the effects of your
Your facial wasting correction procedure will be performed on an outpatient
basis and is generally a very quick procedure with no downtime required
for post-procedure recovery. Some bruising or swelling may occur, but
can usually be concealed with the use of cosmetics. If you would like
more information about surgery to remedy the effects of facial wasting
symptoms, please contact Gabbay Plastic Surgery and we will be happy to
answer any and all of your questions, and to schedule an initial, complimentary
consultation with Dr. Gabbay.
There are several options for patients looking to address their thinning
facial features, including:
Hyaluronic Acid (HA) Based Fillers: hyaluronic acid-based dermal fillers are a popular choice to correct facial
wasting because they are minimally invasive and have very few potential
complications. Restylane®, Perlane®, and Juvéderm®
are among the most frequently utilized HA-based fillers, and their volumizing
results can last up to one year. Because it is a naturally occurring substance,
hyaluronic acid is gradually broken down by the body over a period of
several months. After your dermal filler injection, you may immediately
resume your daily activities; however, the treated area may remain slightly
red and swollen for 24 hours.
Sculptra®: in August 2004, the FDA approved Sculptra® (a poly-L lactic acid,
formerly known as New-Fill®) for the restoration and/or correction
of the signs of facial fat loss due to HIV-related lipoatrophy. Sculptra®
injections work by stimulating the body to produce collagen and can be
used to increase facial volume in the eye and cheek areas. Sculptra®
can cause tenderness, swelling, and bruising at the injection site, which
typically subsides within a few days. These injections are generally given
over a series of time, allowing for a more gradual shaping of the face.
Moderate facial wasting may require 3-5 Sculptra® treatment sessions
for optimal results, and patients with a severe level of lipoatrophy may
need as many as six Sculptra® treatment sessions, which are typically
spaced two weeks apart.
Radiesse®: Radiesse® is a dermal filler comprised of synthetic calcium hydroxylapatite
that has been suspended in a gel carrier, and is FDA approved for use
as a treatment for lipoatrophy. Radiesse® will be administered through
a series of injections, and it causes the body to produce collagen, which
fills in areas of the face that have been impacted by facial wasting.
Fat Grafting or Lipo Sculpting: fat grafting involves harvesting fat from donor sites (i.e. abdomen, buttocks)
and then purifying and injecting this fat into the concave areas of the
face to augment facial volume.
Cheek Augmentation: cheek augmentation with implants can effectively reverse many of the visible
effects of facial wasting. Cheek implants come in a variety of materials,
shapes, and sizes, and can be uniquely customized for each patient.During
the cheek implant procedure, Dr. Gabbay will typically make the first
incision inside the mouth and cheek, push the muscle and fat away from
the bone, and create a pocket to place the new implant into. He will then
position the implant on the masseter muscle for support and will secure
the implant to the cheekbone. Once the implant is properly placed, an
injectable filler may be used to further fill in the area.
Schedule Your Consultation Today!
If you are interested in learning more about facial wasting correction
options, please contact Gabbay Plastic Surgery and let us schedule your
personal consultation with Dr. Gabbay. During your meeting, Dr. Gabbay
will discuss your overall expectations and aesthetic goals, in order to
determine whether you are a good candidate for facial wasting correction
You should come to your consultation prepared to discuss your medical history
(including any past surgeries), present medical conditions, allergies,
and medications. It is imperative that you are honest and provide complete
information, as numerous medical conditions can potentially increase the
risks and complications associated with treatment. If Dr. Gabbay feels
that you are a good candidate for a facial wasting corrective procedure,
he will explain the different techniques, costs and potential side effects
before scheduling your procedure. When choosing Dr. Gabbay, you can be
assured that you are in the hands of a surgeon who has undergone extensive
training and is highly esteemed by his colleagues and patients alike.
Recovering from the Procedure
Depending on the procedure you have for your facial wasting syndrome, recovery
can range from a short amount of time with minimal pain (injectables)
to a longer recovery after cheek implant surgery. When necessary, Dr.
Gabbay will prescribe pain management medications and a prophylactic antibiotic
to prevent infection. The recovery time after an injectable procedure
ranges from one day to one week, with patients experiencing minimal pain
After cheek implant surgery, it is normal to experience some swelling,
redness or mild discomfort, and patients will be advised to refrain from
any activity that could jar the implants for 2-3 weeks. Although rare,
potential complications from facial wasting corrective procedures include
infection, bleeding, swelling, and adverse reaction to anesthesia.
To learn more about the Beverly Hills facial wasting correction procedures
we offer, call our offices today at (310) 928-2558. Gabbay Plastic Surgery
is here to help you reveal your most confident, beautiful self!