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Hyaluronic acid is a natural substance that is found in all living organisms. High concentrations are found in soft connective tissue and in the fluid surrounding the eye. It is also present in some cartilage and joint fluids, and in skin tissue.
In skin tissue, hyaluronic acid is a jelly-like substance that fills the space between collagen and elastin fibres. The role of hyaluronic acid in skin is to:
As the skin ages, there is a gradual reduction in the amount of hyaluronic acid. The drop in HA starts at around the age of 18-20 years, and can be contributing factor in later years to a loss of skin elasticity and formation of lines and wrinkles.
Hyaluronic acid has, for a number of year, been used to fill out deeper lines and wrinkles, or to enhance lips. For more information please see our Dermal Filler section.
Hyaluronic acid creams and tablets are available with claims that they can help to boost levels of hyaluronic acid in the skin. However, there is little evidence that either creams or tablets can make any difference to hyaluronic acid levels in the skin.
A relatively new technique using a specially prepared version of hyaluronic acid for mesotherapy linked to a specific injection technique allows an experienced practitioner to directly inject hyaluronic acid into larger areas of skin to help improve skin quality and hydration.
Introducing the skin to naturally sourced hyaluronic acid, improves the condition of the dermis and stimulates the production of collagen, elastin and the body`s own hyaluronic acid.
It is also supposed to enhance the body`s defence against free radicals, thereby improving cell function and contributing to a fresher and more youthful skin appearance.
Hyaluronic acid injections are marketed in the UK as the IAL system. It is a brand that is manufactured in Italy, and was launched in the U.K. in late 2003.
1.8% sodium salt hyaluronic acid.
Hyaluronic acid is completely broken down within the skin over a period of months, eventually leaving no trace.
Can be used to help restore skin compactness and firmness aross the face, neck, décolleté and hands.
Trained members of the medical profession only.
Individuals with a known hypersensitivity to hyaluronic acid.
For optimum results, it is usually recommended that 3 treatments are carried out within the first 6 weeks and maintenance treatments every 3-4 months afterwards.
Transient erythema (redness), swelling, pain, itching, or tenderness at the injection sites.
Localised reactions thought to be of a hypersensitivity nature have been reported in patients receiving hyaluronic acid treatments.
Again, this depends on area treated, how much is required, and the practitioner doing the treatment, but ranges are in the region of: £300 for an initial series of injections.