Because all collagen dermal fillers last only a short time, there has been an intense desire to develop more semi permanent fillers for the treatment of wrinkles. Artecoll is relatively newer dermal filler which is a combination of bovine collagen and polymethylmethacrylate micro-crystals (PMMA). The product also has a local anesthetic already added to the formulation.
Artecoll is sold in the USA as ArteFill.
Artecoll has been recommended for the treatment of wrinkles and is usually injected into the deeper layers of the skin. It has even been used to treat nipple disorders like inversion and depression.
Once injected, the collagen slowly degrades and the PMMA microspheres embed into the nearby tissues providing structural support. Unlike other dermal fillers, only partial correction of the wrinkles is done on the first attempt.
The European experience indicates that the product is good for the treatment of deeper lines, furrows and wrinkles on the face. It has also been used to treat the deep acne scars and results indicate that its effectiveness lasts for 4-6 years.
Allergy testing is required due to the risk of sensitivity to bovine collagen.
However, despite the European data, there is some concern regarding the safety of this product. Despite what the manufacturers claim, there have been a few serious complications with this product.
The product has received approval for use in the USA but a mandatory follow up of patients for 5 years has been recommended.
Complications that have occurred with the product include:
- Skin necrosis
The granulomas occur 1-2 months after the injections and are very difficult to treat. Some may respond to cortisone treatments but in most cases, minor surgery is required to remove them- thus adding more scars to the skin
Most individuals require 2-4 treatment sessions spaced over a 3-6 week interval period. Because Artecoll provides a semi permanent result, a partial correction is always obtained initially to determine the desired result.
Studies so far have revealed that the product erases the skin wrinkles and fine lines.
The cost of Artecoll averages about 1000 to $1500 per cc