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Hyaluronic acid, also known as hyaluronan or hyaluronate, is an anionic, nonsulfated glycosaminoglycan distributed widely throughout connective, epithelial and neural tissues. Hyaluronic acid contributes considerably to cell proliferation and migration, and may be involved in the progression of some malignant tumors. This substance is widely used in cosmetics, but it is also normally found in the human body. The average person, weighing approximately 70 kg (154 lbs), has roughly 15 grams of hyaluronan in the system. The substance is most abundant in vitreous humor of the eye, the synovia of joints and in subcutaneous tissue. This actually means that human body tolerates this substance very well. It is already approved by the FDA, since 2003, and used to fill soft tissue defects such as facial wrinkles.

Hyaluronic acid in skin care

Hyaluronic acid is often used in cosmetic products and in cosmetic surgery, for the purpose of facial augmentation and correcting the facial contour or reducing the depressions caused by scars, injury, illness or aging. In most cases, hyaluronic acid is administered through a needle or a hyaluronic acid injection. Injected hyaluronic acid has properties similar to a pillow, as it supports facial structures that have lost volume and elasticity. Hyaluronic acid adds significant volume to deflated or depressed areas in the skin, while hydrating the skin, drawing the water to the surface and providing characteristic young-looking glow. Hyaluronic acid fillers are often used to correct frown lines between eyebrows, lines above the upper lip, marionette lines that run from the nose to the corners of the mouth, worry lines, crow’s feet, skin depressions, for redefinition of the border of the lip by eliminating lip feathering, and for the correction of scars.

Side effects

Hyaluronic acid treatment is often very expensive. The treatment provides just a temporary solution, and may last anywhere between three and five months. After this period, a person will need another treatment. The very duration of feeling depends on various factors such as patient's lifestyle, body chemistry and the natural rate of aging. The process of injecting hyaluronic acid under the skin can sometimes be painful, if the injection does not contain an important ingredient called Lidocaine. Hyaluronic acid gel sometimes provokes local inflammation that manifests as swelling and redness, especially if the substance is used for lip augmentation. The bleeding and swelling after the injection is found among the patients who use specific prescribed drugs or certain food supplements like Vitamin E supplements, aspirin, non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and St John’s Wort.

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