PDO Threads

What are PDO Threads?

PDO (Polydioxanone) Threads are absorbable sutures, that were initially used for cardiac surgery. They have undergone extreme scrutiny and have passed high level safety standards. They have since been found to have safe, successful application for aesthetic procedures of the forehead, brows, midface (cheek, jaw, jowls), neck, and throughout the body (breast, arms, knees, etc.) by instantly lifting up loose skin with minimal downtime. At reduced costs, the delivery system is less invasive as it utilizes needles and cannulas of varying sizes to ultimately spare the patient from the traditional surgery that requires time away from work, general anesthesia and recovery from incisions. 


There are 2 different types of PDO Threads: Smooth and Barbed. Smooth sutures act like filler to improve lines, wrinkles, and depressions (e.g. acne scarring). The results from Smooth PDO Threads are not immediate, but mature over the course of a few months. Barbed PDO Threads, however, provide immediate results and improve over time. The Barbed sutures adhere and anchor to the tissues underneath the skin to provide immediate lifting action. 


How do PDO Threads Work?

Through simple hydrolysis, both Smooth and Barbed PDO Threads will degrade within 4 to 6 months without leaving any scar tissue. They are completely absorbable. While the sutures are underneath the skin, your skin gently reacts to the sutures creating a selective inflammatory response to produce collagen to create a longer lasting result. Our skin is excellent at repairing itself when PDO Threads are introduced in this fashion. The skin will heal itself by creating new collagen naturally. 


What can PDO Threads do for the Face?

As we age, the effects of gravity become more noticeable on our faces, especially as our facial support ligaments weaken, our skin becomes more thin, our facial fat pads shift, and our facial bones are resorbed. The areas that are generally affected are the eyebrows, areas around the eyes, the cheeks, the jowls and the neck. The result is a longer, more square-shaped and older-looking face. 


A beautiful youthful face has a “V-shape”. With the aging of tissues and the action of gravity, this “V-shape” diminishes or inverts. The idea behind the PDO Thread Lift is to either create a scaffolding in order to support the tissues and keep them in the “V-shape” or where necessary delicately lift the tissues and reposition the skin to recreate the “V-shape” where it has been lost. 


Can PDO Threads be used in other parts of the body?

PDO Threads can be inserted almost anywhere in the body. These areas include the chest, breasts, knees, arms, abdomen, and thighs. One area where they are especially effective is the neck and jawline. This area is challenging to treat effectively with botulinum toxin or injectable fillers, which are most effective in the upper and middle third of the face, respectively. PDO Threads can also be used to stimulate hair growth in the scalp. 


How is the Procedure Performed?

A PDO Thread Lift is a minimally invasive procedure. After numbing with topical local anesthesia, smooth PDO Threads are inserted into a specific layer of the skin using fine needles which are withdrawn leaving behind the PDO Threads underneath the skin. Barbed PDO Threads, however, are introduced in a similar fashion, but typically use a Blunt Tip Cannula to deliver the threads. After numbing with topical local anesthesia, the skin is further infiltrated with local anesthesia via small gauge needle to painlessly introduce a larger gauge needle to allow entry for the blunt tip cannula. Once inserted, the cannula is removed leaving behind the barbed thread which anchors to the skin. The thread beneath the skin is massaged to allow for complete adherence to the tissue. There is excess thread outside of the skin to allow the practitioner to pull on the thread to create further tension to maximize the lifting capability of the threads. The excess length is then cut off so that no thread is exposed. Depending on the areas treated, the procedure takes 30-60 minutes after appropriate numbing has been achieved. There is mild discomfort during the procedure. We do not want complete total numbness as patient feedback is important during placement of the sutures. If there is moderate discomfort, it signals the practitioner to go more superficially so that there is little to no discomfort. 


Am I a Good Candidate?

As with any aesthetic medical procedure, ideal candidates are generally healthy, nonsmokers with mild to moderate age-related changes. Consultation is necessary to discuss anticipated outcomes based on your medical history and presentation. Please contact the office to schedule an appointment.