Wrinkles, furrows, collagen, and laser resurfacing

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Updated: 1/14/2003 11:32 am
Collagen (KAWL-uh-gin) implants and laser resurfacing are two techniques used to correct unwanted wrinkles, furrows, and drooping in the skin around the eyes. Collagen is a normal component in human skin, but the type used for cosmetic surgery comes from calfskin. Since this collagen is a foreign protein, patients must first be skin-tested to see if they’re allergic to it. If no reaction occurs, collagen is then injected into both the deep and shallow layers of the skin to fill up depressions or lines around the eyes. This procedure is performed in your doctor’s office, and you can resume activities immediately without any obvious swelling or side effects. The collagen is gradually broken down by the body, so these injections provide only temporary improvement. On the other hand, lasers can provide longer lasting improvement for wrinkles and furrows. Using short bursts of extremely high energy, lasers can noticeably reduce lines and wrinkles as well. Lasers work by exposing underlying, youthful skin and tightening the tissue underneath the skin. This technique reduces crow’s feet around the eyes and lines in the lower eyelids, and can also be used to remove excess skin under the eyes. You may experience minimal swelling a few days after laser surgery as the skin heals.

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