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SO YOU WANT FILLERS... Jan. 1, 2021

Fillers are a type of medical injectable that can be injected into areas such as the cheeks, lips, jaws, hands, and chin to augment an area. Fillers can add volume to an area for rejuvenation or redefining structure or shape. Placed in precise locations fillers can diminish deepening nasolabial lines, marionette lines, and perioral rhytids. They are 2 main types, hyaluronic acid fillers and chemical stimulant fillers.

In general the traditional filler is going to be a hyaluronic acid filler since that is a component already found in the body. It will eventually break down in the course of 6 months to 1.5 years or more into water and CO2. If there is a problem with the placement of the filler or if the patient wants it removed then there is a reversal agent that can be injected to immediately dissolve it.

The other type of filler works as a stimulant under the skin for new collagen to be formed. It's requires a much larger space of placement and multiple passes of the needle.

So maybe you have tried botox and was curious about fillers. Who would be a good candidate? The best candidates for fillers are patients who are typically in the age range of 35 to 55.
There's just enough fat, collagen, bone, and natural hyaluronic acid already in place that 1-2 mL of filler will restore their look back to 10 years prior.

Lips are the exception. Beautiful lips are good at any age. With advancements in techniques from women practicing aesthetics we are now seeing the true beauty of the filler industry.

My advice is to take your time looking at what you would like for your face. Ask questions and be curious. Know what is safe, what is reversible, how long it lasts, and is it something you've always wanted. Chances are good we can reach your aesthetic goals together but in case we can't, there are trusted cosmetic surgeons and others that we can refer you safely.

Lisa Kasalajtis, M.D. is an Aesthetic Physician, Internal Medicine Physician, HIV specialist, Acupuncturist, and lecturer on faculty at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Sciences.
Owner and medical director at Labotox Med Spa LLC

The Basics of Botox

So before you take the leap and ask "How much is it for botox?", you may want to read the rest of this article.

The general population has probably heard of botox and everyone seems to have an opinion on it. Whatever you think about it, botox has changed the way we see aging and beauty.

Ten to twenty years ago I myself did not see injecting botulinum toxin into my forehead to be a very smart thing to do. Well that was before I started taking selfies and noticing that my forehead was producing a shadow between my eyebrows. This area is called the "11's." The muscles underneath the skin contract when you squint, concentrate, or scowl. Over time continued contraction makes folds in the skin which deepen and become wrinkled. Blah! This is not a good look for anybody.

Some people get wrinkles across their entire forehead. Usually they say "my mom" or "my dad" has the exact same thing and "I don't want to wait until mine get that deep!" This muscle is called the frontalis muscle. It is the only muscle that pulls the face up. Treating this muscle is tricky because you don't want the whole face to look heavy or pulled down by the other muscles.

Some people (these are the friendly big smiles people) smile so much they have wrinkles around the outer edge of their eyes. These are called "crow's feet." Care must be taken in this area because of it's proximity to the eyes and the vasculature.

So there are multiple areas of the face and body that can benefit from botulinum toxin injections:
    Bunny lines
    Golfball chin
    Lip flips
    Eyebrow lift
    Breast lift
    Jaw slimming
    Frowning lines
    Gummy smile
    Nose lift
    Lines around the mouth

All of which I am experienced except golfball chin. If you happen to have one the first one is on me.

So picking a medical aesthetician is sort of like picking a hair stylist or a nail artist. You have to develop a relationship and trust that they will take care of your beauty in the long term. Each visit for botulinum toxin is spaced 3 months apart. It is because of the mechanism of action of the toxin cleaving the receptors that signal the muscles to contract. Your body eventually clears off the old and makes new receptors. If you come in too soon for treatment you won't get the full benefit of the botox.

Everyone is different in the way their face moves and how much is needed in a particular spot. All patients ideally should return in 2 weeks to see if more is needed. It is better to under dose and reassess than to overdose. Why pay for something you don't need?

So to answer the original question of "how much is it for botox?" It depends on the individual needs and the area needed. At Labotox Med Spa we use price per unit. That's how much product is being injected into each muscle area. The pricing ranges from $8/unit to as high as $20/unit (in Chicago). Prices are variable according to incentives given by the companies that sell the botulinum toxin. Lately the prices have been rising and the costs of the additional equipment and supplies are high with limited supplies.

Lisa Kasalajtis, M.D.

is a trained aesthetic physician and medical school lecturer at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Sciences.  She is also trained in acupuncture and internal medicine. Member of American College of Physicians. Licensed physician and surgeon in the state of Illinois.