Qwo®: The First Injectable Cellulite Treatment | The Derm Institute

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You may have noticed it—dimpled or bumpy skin on your thighs and buttocks. Unfortunately, cellulite affects 90-95% of women at some point in their lives.  A common myth it only affects those who are overweight—not true!  Cellulite can occur in all body types and is result of a structural change in the fibrous bands that attach under the skin. But now, a quick and effective injectable treatment called Qwo can make unwelcomed cellulite a thing of the past.

Qwo (collagenase clostridium histolyticum, or CCH) is the first FDA-approved injectable treatment for cellulite. Renowned dermatologist Dr. Annie Chiu is excited that The Derm Institute is one of the first practices to be helping the company this new treatment to its growing collection of injectable treatments!

Read on to learn more about what causes cellulite and how Qwo can fix it.

What Causes Cellulite?

The most common cause of cellulite is the hardening of the fibrous septae, which normally provides structural support to the skin. Over time, these fibrous septae may thicken causing a ripply appearance of your skin in areas like the buttocks and thighs.  You may only notice some mild cellulite when you pinch your skin in an area where cellulite is typically found, such as your thighs. When it’s more severe, cellulite can make the skin appear bumpy, dimply, and with areas of peaks and valleys.

Can Qwo Remove My Cellulite?

As a minimally invasive injectable treatment, Qwo is very different than many of today’s other cellulite treatments, which often use invasive methods, or laser or energy therapies to target cellulite on the thighs and buttocks.  These treatments can leave marks, or are just not effective as they are not FDA-approved medications.

Qwo is an injectable medication approved by the FDA that targets the structural source of cellulite, the fibrous bands (septae) that bind the skin down, causing a cellulite “dimple.” These fibrous septae are composed mainly of collagen. Using an enzyme known as collagenase that breaks down collagen, Qwo targets type I and III collagen in these fibrous bands, releasing and dissolving them, which allows the “dimple” to pop back up. The process eliminates the skin tethering, smoothing out the skin and softening or removing cellulite dimples.

Why Dr. Annie Chiu and The Derm Institute?

As one of the very first providers to offer Qwo in the Greater Los Angeles area, in particular the southbay cities of Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, and Redondo Beach area, Dr. Chiu is well qualified because of her nationally recognized expertise and reputation in injectable aesthetic treatments. Not only does Dr. Chiu lecture and teach other physicians on numerous groundbreaking injectable technologies, but she is a frequent author of scientific papers, and as a scientific researcher, leads clinical trials in new injectable technology on the horizon. Dr. Chiu’s skill, expertise, and experience as an injector and options for non-surgical body contouring are recognized as being among the best and most knowledgeable in the nation.

If you want to take care of your particular cellulite challenge because you have a unique skin type, you should arrange for a clinical consultation by physician Dr. Annie Chiu. She’ll create an individualized treatment plan for you so that you get the stunning results you deserve!

Schedule Your Qwo Appointment Today!

Annie Chiu, MD is a board-certified dermatologist serving the Southbay area of Los Angeles, including Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach, and Palos Verdes.  Her expertise, reputation, and experience attract patients from all over the world. The Derm Institute is a unique boutique practice founded by Dr. Chiu, where cosmetic treatments are performed only at the physician level, as she consults and treats every patient personally. No gimics, no hype, no pushy marketing. Just passion and expertise in the field.

For the best cellulite treatment available from renowned physician Dr. Annie Chiu, call us today at (310) 939-9800 or contact us online to schedule your personalized consultation!

Your Ultimate Guide to the Different Types of Injectables | The Derm Institute

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As we age, our faces naturally lose the subcutaneous fat stored just below the skin (think how baby fat conveys youth). With our facial muscles working closer to the skin surface, our smile lines and crow’s feet become more apparent.

In addition to this, the natural aging process results in bone loss in specific areas of the face, in particular the jawline and chin area, leading to a more droopy appearance.  Photodamage and environmental stresses along with intrinsic aging also affect the canvas of our skin– leading to uneven pigment, prominent pore size, and fine lines.  Other factors also affect our facial skin, including stress, genetics, and lifestyle.

Injectables can give you a more youthful look in a fraction of the time, with minimal downtime and at a considerably lower cost than that of a facelift. Read on to learn more about our injectable treatment options here at The Derm Institute!


Also known as neurotoxins, neuromodulators are not fillers but injectable proteins that aid in the relaxation of muscles. They are best for patients with visible wrinkles caused by dynamic muscle movement (such as frowning), smiling, or raising of the brows, resulting in wrinkles that are apparent with repetitive movement.  Over time, these wrinkles can etch the skin and become apparent even when we are not making these faces.  That’s why we believe in early preventative treatment with baby amounts of botox before the lines become deeper grooves.

Most neurotoxin injections last three to four months, with some enduring up to six months.

The neuromodulators highly sought after by patients at The Derm Institute include the following:

Botox, the first original cosmetic and therapeutic neuromodulator, is best suited for glabellar lines (between the eyebrows), periorbital (crow’s feet), and forehead lines. In these regions of the face, movement-related wrinkles (sometimes called “dynamic wrinkles”) can make us look tired or angry.

Dysport, Jeuveau, and Xeomin are often also used and priced exactly the same as Botox.  These are similar products made by different manufacturers with very slight differences that an expert like Dr. Annie Chiu can guide you in choosing the optimal combination.

Find out more from board-certified dermatologist Dr. Annie Chiu at The Derm Institute, who perfected the “art” behind combineing neuromodulators Botox, Jeuveau, Dysport, and Xeomin.  Beyond treating just the upper face, full facial botox including bunny lines, lip flips, jawline tightening, smoothing a dimply chin can all be achieved with botox.  The art is in these little areas to create a harmonious, natural, and not frozen appearance.

Injectable Fillers

Dermal fillers are gel-like substances injected below the skin’s surface to help restore volume loss, smooth out fine lines and wrinkles, and enhance the natural contours of the face.

There are multiple types of fillers, including hyaluronic acid (HA) fillers (the most common), calcium hydroxyapatite, and poly-L lactic acid fillers. The results from some of these can last one to two years.

Hyaluronic Acid Wrinkle Fillers

The category of wrinkle fillers most popular with dermatologists is hyaluronic acid (HA), a natural sugar molecule. Each type works differently with results that can last from several months up to two years.  Patients often inquire what is the difference between these fillers.  With over 20 HA fillers available in the US, expert non-surgical cosmetic dermatologists can help you refine the best product of choice, based on consistency, softness, flexibility, and duration.  Think of different fillers like different paint brushes–some are meant for fine etched superficial lines, some is for broad lifting strokes.

Juvederm Fillers

Juvederm fillers are amongst the world’s most popular HA fillers and are composed of a hyaluronic acid gel which is has over 25 years of safety data.

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Vycross Fillers

Voluma, Vollure, and Volbella are the latest and longest-lasting dermal fillers on the market today, producing results that can last up to two years. Although they are related to the Juvederm family of HA-based fillers, they differ. Being uniquely cross-linked, they provide a longer, smoother, and more natural appearance with reduced swelling and more immediate results.

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Restylane Fillers

Restylane is a family of popular dermal fillers used to replenish volume, contour the face, eliminate fine lines, and soften wrinkles and folds. All are HA-based, which provides support and fullness for beautiful, healthy skin.

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RHA (Resilient Hyaluronic Acid) fillers

RHA fillers are a newer generation of HA-based fillers that uniquely provide soft, discreet, subtle results that adapt to your own facial expressions. They have longer chain hyaluronic acids that are more flexible and integrate into your skin.

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Belotero Balance® is a dermal filler with a lower density than other HA-based fillers and designed to smooth extremely fine lines and mild superficial wrinkles. It is injected into a more superficial layer of the skin, instantly smoothing fine lines, making the skin appear more radiant, luminous, and hydrated.  The undereye hollow is a common area where Dr. Chiu utilizes this filler.

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Biostimulatory Wrinkle Fillers

Sculptra Aesthetic

Sculptra®, an injectable poly-L-lactic acid that works by stimulating collagen production, is one of The Derm Institute staff’s favorite treatments for global skin rejuvenation. Dr. Chiu’s highly recognized expertise with Sculptra allows the most natural and gradual improvement compared to all the other injectables as it has a biostimulatory effect to grown in your own collagen over time.

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Radiesse® consists of calcium-based microspheres similar to the ones our bodies naturally produce. The filler stimulates natural collagen and elastic tissue production, adding volume to deeper lines in the nasolabial folds, lifting the cheeks, adding structure to the jawline, and filling in hollows as in the temples.

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Get Your Next Rejuvenation Treatment atManhattan Beach and Redondo Beach, CA

Dr. Annie Chiu’s boutique dermatology and aesthetics focused expert practice offers you the most advanced age-defying rejuvenation solutions, including injectables such as Botox®, Dermal Fillers, and the newer generation of hyaluronic acid fillers known as Resilient Hyaluronic Acid (RHA) Fillers. Dr. Chiu is a leader in the field of non-invasive injectable treatment, as she conducts clinical trials with upcoming pipeline products, and is considered an industry leader in innovative techniques.  Under Dr. Chiu’s care, you’ll enjoy some of the most natural results, giving you smooth contours and a natural, youthful, rested look for up to 15 months.

Call us today at (310) 939-9800 or contact us online to schedule your personalized consultation!