Case study involving use of injectable poly-L-lactic acid (PLLA) for acne scars

J Dermatolog Treat. 2009;20(5):302-7. doi: 10.1080/09546630902817879.


This report describes a novel use of injectable poly-L-lactic acid (PLLA; Sculptra) for the correction of acne scars in an adult patient. The patient, a 60-year-old white woman, had previously been treated for acne scars with CO(2) laser resurfacing, dermabrasion and trichloroacetic acid peels, as well as collagen, calcium hydroxylapatite and hyaluronic acid dermal fillers. These treatment approaches did not provide satisfactory improvement of the patient's acne scars. The latest course of therapy consisted of seven treatment sessions during which injectable PLLA was administered serially into individual scars and depressions in the patient's nasolabial folds, mid-cheeks and chin. Six months after the seventh treatment session, the patient noted an observable improvement in her acne scars. She received touch-up injections 14 months after her seventh treatment. Injectable PLLA was well tolerated, with only minimal swelling for 24-72 hours post-treatment and bruising at injection sites lasting 5-7 days. Given the well-recognized difficulty in treating acne scars, the results of this case suggest that injectable PLLA may provide an improved treatment modality for resolving acne scars.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Acne Vulgaris / complications*
  • Acne Vulgaris / drug therapy
  • Acne Vulgaris / pathology
  • Cellulose / therapeutic use*
  • Cicatrix / drug therapy*
  • Cicatrix / etiology
  • Cicatrix / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Injections, Intradermal
  • Lactic Acid / therapeutic use*
  • Mannitol / therapeutic use*
  • Middle Aged
  • Polyesters
  • Polymers / therapeutic use*


  • New-Fill
  • Polyesters
  • Polymers
  • Lactic Acid
  • Mannitol
  • poly(lactide)
  • Cellulose