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What Is Collagen?

Skin is your largest and most visible organ. It is composed of two layers.

The first layer is called the epidermis. It acts as a protective barrier by preventing water loss from cells and tissues. Without this layer, your body would become dehydrated.

Below the epidermis is the dermis. The dermis is made up mostly of collagen. Collagen provides the framework for the growth of cells and blood vessels and is the support structure for your skin.

Why Do Lines Appear?

Facial wrinkles and creases begin to appear as the collagen fibers under the first layer of skin start to wear out. This can be a result of normal aging or excessive squinting, frowning, smoking or smiling.

How Does Collagen Replacement Therapy Work?

CRT smoothes facial lines and most scars by replenishing the worn-out collagen beneath the first layer of skin. Zyderm® and/or Zyplast® are collagen implants made from purified bovine, or cow, collagen. The implants are injected just under the surface of the skin and are usually accepted by the body as its own collagen. The non-surgical procedure is safe, quick, virtually painless and produces immediate results.

Which areas respond best to CRT?

The most common areas treated with collagen are: frown lines between the eyes, cheek depressions, smoker's lines around the mouth, worry lines in the forehead, crow's feet around the eyes, deep smile lines, dimples, acne and other facial scars. Depending on the severity of the lines or scar, several treatments may be necessary to achieve optimal results. CRT is also available for lip enhancement. Your physician will review your medical history, age, skin type, pigmentation, and consider your desired result to determine the best course of treatment for you.

Since its approval by the Food and Drug Administration in1981, Collagen Replacement Therapy (CRT) has become the most common treatment for facial wrinkles and frown lines.

What Can I Expect after CRT?

Normal activities can be resumed immediately after CRT. Discomfort is minimal. The treatment site may be slightly swollen for a few hours following the procedure. Slight bruising is also possible but can be easily covered with makeup. Allergic reactions are rare (less than 1%) but may result in prolonged redness, itching and/or firmness at the injection site, and for this reason a small skin test will be performed on a hidden area beforehand.