Polylactic acid – Sculptra

Polylactic Acid (APL) is a synthetic product known for more than 25 years in the medical field, with various therapeutic applications such as suture materials, materials for osteosynthesis or ligament repair or in craniofacial reconstruction and orbital surgery and is known to be highly biocompatible and biodegradable.

Polylactic acid is successfully used to correct facial imperfections and blemishes, such as:

  • Surface wrinkles;
  • Natural skin furrows/folds;
  • Sagging, poorly accentuated cheekbones;
  • “Weak” and not very harmonious chin;

Micro-particles of polylactic acid, properly diluted in sterile water, are injected very slowly into the sub-dermal layer through syringes equipped with very thin needles.

The presence of polylactic acid in the dermis gradually (but progressively) stimulates the synthesis of collagen: by doing so, it is possible to appreciate – even if only after 4/6 weeks – a considerable increase in volume of the atrophic areas of the face.

Numerous in vitro and in vivo toxicology and biocompatibility studies on different animal species, as well as in vivo human studies have demonstrated the harmlessness of APL, which is therefore defined as an immunologically inactive substance; even the Food and Drug Administration has recognized APL as “generally safe”.

In the specialized medical literature, there are no known cases of allergic reaction to APL.


Recently, a new formulation of a poly-lactic acid hydrogel has been developed in aesthetic medicine for wrinkle filling and skin sagging as a non-animal, biocompatible, non-toxic and long-lasting biodegradable product.

The product is referred to as SCULPTRA™. Implantation of SCULPTRA™ does not require prior skin testing.


Sculptra™ is injected into the subcutaneous tissue and is particularly suited to eliminate or improve lines, deep wrinkles, scars, degenerative skin changes associated with aging.

The implantation of SCULPTRA™ immediately causes a marked improvement in skin conditions; however, this improvement is temporary, because within a few days the water contained in the product will be reabsorbed by the body.

The real and effective correction of the imperfections occurs thanks to the synthesis of new collagen caused by the APL.

This process requires a period of a few months, so more sessions are necessary (usually at least four) to obtain the filling of the defects to be corrected.

SCULPTRA™ is a long-lasting biodegradable product. Its ivita is about 18 months; this means that after 18 months there will be about half of the product used. This will allow for single touch-up sessions once a year.


SCULPTRA™ is injected into the subcutaneous tissue or deep dermis with a fine needle.

A small amount of anesthetic is added to the product to reduce the discomfort of infiltration.

Numerous inoculation points are usually required, and often, because the face always has asymmetries, the amount of product injected into one hemislice is different from the amount injected into the other hemislice.

The session ends with a vigorous massage performed by the physician or competent personnel. Massage is essential for proper distribution of the product and to minimize the formation of granulomas.

After Planting

The patient should absolutely repeat a 3-4 minute massage as instructed by the doctor at least twice a day for the first week and once a day for the second week.

If bruising occurs, apply ice and any products containing vitamin K. Avoid exposure to extreme temperatures for 48 hours.


If you want to know more about Mesotherapy come and visit us at the Estemed Outpatient Clinic of Dr Paola Rosalba Russo in Str. Saliceto Panaro, 123, 41122 Modena.

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