What is injectable polymethylmethacrylate + bovine collagen?
Injectable polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) with bovine collagen is known as Bellafill. The FDA approved PMMA in 2006 to treat nasolabial folds, “smile lines”. This product recently received its FDA approval for improving the appearance of moderate to severe, atrophic, distensible facial acne scars on the cheeks. This makes it the only FDA approved injectable filler for acne scars.
As we age, the fat, muscles, bone, and skin in our face begins to thin. This loss of volume leads to either a sunken or sagging appearance of the face and increased facial wrinkles and folds. Some patient with inflammatory or nodular cystic acne may develop acne scars. Atrophic acne scars are depressed scars, which develop at sites of prior, severe acne inflammation. PMMA + bovine collagen has not been studied in ice-pick acne scars or sinus tracts. Prior to its approval, other treatments used for acne scarring included laser resurfacing procedures, chemical peeling, or dermabrasion.
The microspheres containing PMMA induce your skin to produce its own collagen, which can last up to 5 years. It also contains bovine, cow, collagen for immediate improvement. Given the bovine collagen component, a skin test must be performed at least 2-4 weeks before any injections with PMMA product. This test is performed in order to detect an allergy to the bovine collagen component.
Your doctor will evaluate the areas of your face needing improvement. Topical medication may be used for added comfort prior to your procedure. One or two treatment sessions with PMMA are needed to achieve optimal correction, which are often spaced at one month interval. The effects of PMMA can last up to 5 years.