Calcium Hydroxylapatite for Body Contouring

Calcium Hydroxylapatite for Body Contouring

  1. What is Calcium Hydroxylapatite?
  2. How does this treatment work for cellulite?
  3. How does this treatment work for buttock augmentation?
  4. Can this be used on the thighs?
  5. What are the alternative options for cellulite reduction?
  6. What are the alternative options for buttock augmentation?

What is Calcium Hydroxylapatite?

Biostimulatory products are gaining popularity in the body contouring industry.  These products are injected into the skin to stimulate the body’s own ability to build new tissue. Calcium hydroxylapatite (CaHA, also known as Radiesse) is one of the most commonly used biostimulatory products for the skin. Other commonly known products include PLLA ( Poly-L-Lactic Acid, also known as Sculptra) and PMMA (polymethylmetacrylate, also known as Bellafil.)

Calcium hydroxylapatite has been used since 2004. It is biocompatible, biodegradable and resorbable. These characteristics are important because there is minimal chance of nodule (lump) or granuloma (inflammatory lump) formation years after injections which are possible with PMMA. The CaHa stimulates fibroblast cells which increase collagen as well as elastin which improves skin quality. CaHa also contains a carrier gel called carboxymethycelluose which gives an immediate filling when injected.

The CaHA particles are degraded into calcium by-products and filtered out of the body by the kidneys after 9-12 months.

buttock augmentation using radiesse on woman



How does this treatment work for cellulite?

Because cellulite is often associated with age-associated skin changes such as collagen degradation and overall laxity, increasing the strength and elasticity of the dermis is an important goal for an effective cellulite treatment. This requires stimulation of new collagen formation and subsequent dermal remodeling. Hyperdilute calcium hydroxylapatite (CaHa) will increase the production of collagen that leads to a strengthening and remodeling of the dermis which prevents puckering of the tissue. It also has a gradual filling effect in the cellulite dimples.

The optimal candidate for buttock smoothing and augmentation using calcium hydroxylapatite is a patient in their 20s to 50s, at an ideal weight that does not fluctuate. The results of CaHa can be increased several fold by combining the treatment with radiofrequency during, or shortly before the time of treatment.

cellulite beneath the skin diagram

How does this treatment work for buttock augmentation?

While fat grafting and buttock implants are very effective for increasing size and projection for many butt-lift patients, some patients are still left desiring an improvement in the appearance of the skin, especially when cellulite dimples are present. Other patients desire more skin tightening and less laxity. Other patients do not want to undergo surgery at all and want a non-surgical rejuvenation.

The least invasive way to enhance the buttocks is by injection of biostimulators such as calcium hydroxylapatite. Multiple injections over time will gradually improve the plumpness and contour of the area. CaHa injections can be used to contour the buttock to enhance characteristics and proportions of the ideal buttock.

The ideal CaHa buttock augmentation candidate is aged 20s-50s. CaHa is for use in healthy patients who are looking for correction of irregularities and small areas of atrophy in the buttocks.  For more dramatic results, surgery may be required.


buttock augmentation using radiesse

Can this be used on the thighs?

Yes, calcium hydroxylapatite is effective for cellulite on the thighs. The product can be injected into deeper dimples, or it can be fanned throughout the thigh area to tighten and smooth the skin for an “airbrushed” effect. The skin will also feel smoother, bouncier, and more elastic. 2-3 sessions may be required. Results will last 2 years or longer.

What are the alternative options for cellulite reduction?

Alternatives for cellulite reduction include Cellulaze, Cellfina, or radiofrequency:

  1. Cellulaze uses heat from a laser to shrink cellulite bulges and also damage the fibrous bands that create the dimples. The results are long lasting. The side effects can include bruises, swelling,  soresness, and skin burns from the laser.
  2. Cellfina is a treatment that uses a microblade inserted beneath the skin to cut the fibrous bands that create cellulite dimples. This treatment also creates long lasting results. Side effects include bruising, swelling, and pain.
  3. Radiofrequency works by using heat to shrink fat pockets, and thickening and strengthening collagen in the skin so it is not as easily prone to contour irregularities. This treatment typically has few to no side effects. A few radiofrequency options include truSculpt, Vivace, and BodyFx.

What are the alternative options for buttock augmentation?

The alternative options for buttock augmentation include buttock implants, buttock fat transfer (also known as Brazilian butt lift or “BBL”), and Sculptra augmentation. Both buttock implants and buttock fat transfers involve anesthesia with 6 weeks or more of strictly limiting physical activity such as sitting or exercise. The advantages of a fat transfer procedure include liposuction of unwanted fat pockets in the lower back or thighs. Fat transfer is not always permanent in patients because some of the fat can atrophy or die over time.

Sculptra augmentation is very simliar to calcium hydroxylapatite augmentation. Both Sculptra and CaHa are injectable biostimulants that are capable of increasing the buttock size and contouring its shape. Sculptra typically costs more than CaHa.

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