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LaVIV® (azficel-T): The First and Only Injectable Filler Made from Your Own Skin Cells
One of the most common signs of aging or sun-damaged facial skin is the appearance of wrinkles or deep creases around the mouth, commonly referred to as “smile lines”. Improving or eradicating these lines has become a much-requested and now commonplace non-surgical cosmetic procedure using one of various fillers injected under the surface of the skin to lift and smooth out the wrinkle area.
A Natural Approach to Facial Regeneration
What if instead of using commercial fillers you could have your own cells injected into the wrinkle sites to replace those cells lost in the aging process? By injecting tens of millions of your own cells you can smooth and refresh your facial appearance for an extended length of time.
That’s exactly what Fibrocell Science of Exton, PA, has developed.
Long-awaited in San Francisco, LAVIV® is the first and only US Federal Drug Administration-approved autologous (meaning donor and recipient are the same) cell therapy for the treatment of facial aging, specifically to treat the smile lines around the mouth, called nasolabial folds.
This exciting new injectable filler is prepared from a collection of living cells (fibroblasts) taken from the actual patient, which are cultured and processed and then re-injected into the patient.
In the first step of the process, three tiny skin samples (referred to as biopsies) will be removed from an inconspicuous area, usually behind the patient’s ears. These samples are sent to the Laviv Laboratory where they are cultured until the required number of certain cells, called fibroblasts, can be harvested. Around half a billion fibroblasts can be cultured from a skin sample.
These fibroblasts are processed into custom-made cosmetic filler that is personalized and exclusive to one specific individual. Your cells are for your use only and are never interchanged or used by anyone else. This process can take between 11-22 weeks, depending on the amount required.
After processing, the initial treatment amount of filler is shipped by overnight express to your physician’s office and the first LAVIV® injections take place, using about 16-20 million fibroblasts. Generally, three treatment sessions are required, each about 3-6 weeks apart. The balance of the filler is kept under sterile deep-frozen conditions by the lab and shipped as required for each subsequent treatment session.
Recovery and Post-Treatment Guidelines
Following each injection session, you may experience minor to moderate redness, swelling puffiness or bruising. Do not wash the injection site for at least 24 hours and do not rub, touch or manipulate the area or apply any makeup or creams (including sunscreen) for at least 72 hours. To relieve discomfort, a cold compress may be applied for 2-3 minutes at a time, but do not directly apply ice to your face.
Results reported in the studies carried out for FDA approval indicated excellent wrinkle correction for the full study, which lasted 6 months. Although officially, based only on this study, efficacy beyond six months has not been established, but further anecdotal reports from physicians indicate that the results last much longer, perhaps for several years or more.
The Ideal Candidate
This exciting new injectable filler is a breakthrough in the quest for a wrinkle correction treatment that is both natural and effective but also long lasting and safe. Adverse reactions occurred in less than 1% of trial subjects.
The idea candidate for LAVIV® treatment is someone who qualifies physically and is prepared to spend the additional time required for the treatment process in order to achieve a very safe, effective and long lasting natural result.
Not everyone is a candidate for LaVIV® treatment. The effects of LAVIV® are not immediate, but gradually appear over the course of the three-treatment regimen, so time and patience are required. Dr. Mosser would not recommend this filler for a patient with a history of basal cell carcinoma or serious skin allergies or who have a genetic disorder or immune problems affecting their skin. Concomitant use of aspirin, NSAIDs or anticoagulants during treatment is not recommended.
As with any treatment Dr. Mosser performs, he will make a thorough patient history and examination and discuss in detail the various options available in order to determine the best and safest treatment to follow to achieve his patient’s goals.
Skillful Application for Optimal Results
Because of the extremely specialized nature of LAVIV® injection, San Francsisco patients are encouraged to find a physician with the skill required. In fact, the manufacturer will only work with core cosmetic specialists such as Dr. Mosser for this treatment. Injection skill and technique are critical for the success of LAVIV® treatment, even more than in treatments using other injectable products.
Dr. Mosser is an acknowledged expert on cosmetic injectable enhancements. In addition to being approved by Fibrocell to administer LAVIV® he has been recognized with a Platinum status with Allergan (the makers of Botox® and Juvederm®) and is considered a key opinion leader (KOL) by Merz Pharmaceuticals (the makers of Radiesse®, Xeomin® and Belotero®). Dr. Mosser was also chosen to train other physicians by the makers of Sculptra® and has been an advisor to Suneva®, the makers of Artefill®.
Dr. Mosser has built a very successful San Francisco plastic surgery practice with his highly personal approach to creating the most natural results for each individual patient. Whichever filler he uses for your treatment you can be sure it was chosen to achieve the results you desire.
Schedule a consultation with Dr. Mosser to discuss whether LAVIV® may be just the treatment you’ve been waiting for to diminish your facial wrinkles.