A human placental tissue allograft could be the next hyaluronic acid filler alternative for aesthetic patients, according to Miami, Fla., based plastic surgeon Rian A. Maercks, M.D.
Dr. Maercks is testing AmnioFill (MiMedx), a product commercially available for homologous use as a placental connective tissue matrix to replace or supplement tissue in acute and chronic wound care, according to the company’s website.
The plastic surgeon has used the tissue allograft as an investigational filler to treat the faces of eight patients and is in the process of monitoring them for outcomes.
There are several draws to having such an alternative to hyaluronic acid (HA) dermal fillers, Dr. Maercks says.
“One, it’s natural, native human tissue. Number two, it’s filled with growth factors, that are important to fetus development and support, which, at least theoretically, should activate some vascular cells and, potentially, stem cells locally when it’s used, causing an in-growth of healthy tissues. That’s the real exciting thing,” Dr. Maercks says.
Another advantage of the non-HA filler: Its proteins are hydrophobic.
“One of the difficulties with hyaluronic acid-based fillers, which are really the best on the market, is that they are very hydrophilic, which gives them the power to maintain volume but also makes them swell a lot and causes that recovery period of swelling,” Dr. Maercks says. “With hydrophobic compounds, there is a much reduced, and sometimes even absent, swelling part of the recovery, which is really important for high-demand patients who want to come in and get something done without recovery.”