Thread lifting, also known as Fine Thread Contour (FTC Therapy) is the term used to describe several different techniques in which injectable threads are used to lift, tighten and improve the overall structure, tone and texture of the skin. This system uses soluble PDO (polydioxanone) threads, which have been used safely in surgery for over 15 years. The benefits of treatment will vary from patient to patient, but may include tightening, firming and lifting of the skin, an improvement in skin tone and texture and a localised fat dissolving effect.
The presence of the threads in the tissues initiates a direct healing response, stimulating the fibroblast cells to produce more collagen, whilst encouraging synthesis of elastin and hyaluronic acid in the skin, both of which are vital for keeping the skin looking plump and youthful. By twisting the threads, our Nurses are able to stimulate a mechanical response similar to that produced by acupuncture, resulting in a further boost to collagen production and additional strengthening of the stabilising skin matrix. The PDO threads dissolve slowly over the course of 6 months, leaving bands of collagen in their place.
Should a PDO Thread Lift be agreed upon as the most suitable treatment, a local anaesthetic cream and/or injection will be applied to the treatment site to minimise discomfort. After thoroughly cleansing your skin, your face will be marked to show the intended insertion points for each of the PDO threads. Each thread is inserted into the skin at two points through a very fine needle. Depending on the area to be treated, threads are introduced either in to the skin itself, the subcutaneous fat, or the muscle. A lifted appearance may be seen immediately following the treatment; however, the results will improve in the following weeks and months once the neocollagenesis process has been stimulated.
Different thicknesses and types of thread are used for different areas of the face. Short, non-barbed threads can be used to treat fine lines on the face, as well as tightening and lifting areas such as the jaw line and neck. Thicker “cogs” or barbed threads can give a significant improvement to the mid and lower face. Sometimes a combination of both non-barbed and barbed threads will be used to achieve the optimum results. For areas requiring the deep insertion of PDO threads, prophylactic antibiotics will be prescribed by your Nurse prior to and post treatment.
Generally speaking, the procedure will take around 75 minutes to complete.
The effects of the treatment may develop gradually, with the optimum result reached after approximately 3 – 4 months. Once the neocollagenesis has taken full effect, the overall texture of the skin is improved; it becomes thicker, tighter and firmer and fine lines and wrinkles are reduced. Results generally last approximately 12 – 24 months, depending on the age of the patient at the time of procedure and how much sagging the thread lift has corrected.
The threads are extremely versatile and can be used all around the face and neck as well as certain areas of the body. Vertical and horizontal wrinkles on the forehead, sagging brows, drooping cheeks, pronounced nasolabial (nose to mouth) and marionette lines, as well as sagging jawlines and necks can all be treated very successfully using the PDO Thread Lifting system.
A local anaesthetic cream and/or injection will be applied to the treatment site ahead of the procedure to minimise discomfort and prevent you feeling any sharp pain. Your Nurse practitioner will continually check your comfort throughout the treatment.
The downtime with this type of thread lift is minimal and there should be no need to take time off work unless you would feel more comfortable with this. The PDO Thread Lift usually takes up to 3-4 months to reach optimum effect, so it’s a gradual process. The risk of side effects is minimal, however as with any injectable treatment some clients may experience mild localised bruising, redness or swelling at the injection site. Thorough cleansing of the skin prior to treatment and careful placement of each of the injections helps us to ensure these risks- and the risk of infection- are as minimal as possible. A full explanation of the treatment limitations and possible side effects will be provided during consultation.
We will arrange a follow-up appointment around 1 week after initial treatment and another at 3 months. At the 3 month appointment we will discuss an ongoing maintenance programme.