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The Foot Facelift: Dermal Filler Injections for Fat Pad Atrophy

It is human nature to lament for what has since past and to revel in the memories of our life experiences and milestones. With maturity and experience come the unfortunate side effects of time. This, for many, has ignited a desire to recapture our youth. This desire is expressed in many different ways. For some it leads them to their Plastic Surgeon’s office and for others it leads them to their Podiatrist’s office.

You may be scratching you head right now trying to figure out how plastic surgery and podiatry fit together. Well what was once ‘solely’ intended to rejuvenate the face is now being used for many applications in the foot and ankle.

Dermal fillers are injectable compounds used to “fill” or plump areas of the face which have lost volume due to age. These fillers are injected by plastic surgeons to restore a more youthful appearance in their patients. These same fillers are being widely used by podiatrists to reverse the effects of fat atrophy in the feet.

As we age, the very important fat pads on the bottom of our feet which act as shock absorbing cushions begin to shrink and shift. For many, this change in anatomy predisposes individuals for problems such as metatarsalgia, capsulitis and bursitis which can all make walking and standing painful and laborious. Common symptoms for patients with fat pad atrophy include pain that gets worse when standing and walking, toes that may feel as if they go numb and calluses that form over areas of bone prominence.

The changes in the consistency of the tissue can keep us from enjoying an active lifestyle which may involve recreational sports, dancing or even vacationing. This can pose an especially difficult problem for fashion forward women who wish to continue wearing high heel shoes.

The injection procedure is simple and can be performed in as little as 15 minutes in your podiatrist’s office. The procedure is relatively inexpensive and painless, and has virtually no period of recovery. The filler is broken down over time and dissolves in the body naturally. That means, however, that the procedure will need to be repeated in the future. The filler can last for up to one year or longer. The dermal fillers once intended for the face can now be used to make your feet feel and look younger and refreshed.