What is Juvederm™?
Juvederm™ is a non-animal based injectable filler made in the laboratory. It is made of hyaluronic acid – a material that is in the joints and bodies of all living things. Hyaluronic acid is also the main ingredient of Restylane. It is a complex sugar that maintains its three dimensional shape in the body by attracting and holding large numbers of water molecules. Among its many natural functions, hyaluronic acid maintains the volume of the skin, keeps skin hydrated and maintains the shape of the eye. As we age, we lose hyaluronic acid from the skin and it loses its volume and structure. Injecting Juvederm™ into skin folds and wrinkles replaces that structure and volume.
What is the difference between Juvederm™ and Restylane?
Juvederm™ contains a higher concentration of cross-linked hyaluronic acid and is more concentrated than Restylane. Whether that translates into a major difference in duration of effect remains to be seen. At this point, Dr. Rivkin prefers Juvederm™ to Restylane for wrinkle correction and lip enhancement because Juvederm™ is smoother and less viscous. There seem to be less bumps and less pain with Juvederm™ than with Restylane. Juvederm™ is also supposed to last around 8 months, as compared to 6 for Restylane.
Could I be allergic to Juvederm™?
Allergies to Juvederm™ are extremely rare. Dr. Rivkin has not heard of anyone being allergic to Juvederm™. Because it is free of animal products and because the body recognizes hyaluronic acid as a not foreign, adverse reactions to Juvederm™ injection are unheard of. Even though Juvederm™ just came onto the US market, we know this because it has been used successfully in Europe for many years.
What is Juvederm™ used for?
Dr. Rivkin uses Juvederm™ for:
- filling in nasolabial folds or “smile lines”
- filling in glabellar lines (“frown lines” or “11 lines”) between the eyebrows
- filling in “marionette” lines at the corners of the mouth
- eliminating under eye dark circles by filling in the groove underneath the lower eyelid (“Non Surgical Eye Lift”)
- enhancing the lips
Who is a good candidate for Juvederm™?
Anyone who would like to address the above outlines aesthetic concerns and does not have an active infection at the site of injection. Juvederm™ can also be safely combined with other injectable fillers like Radiesse or Restylane.
How experienced is Dr. Rivkin at Juvederm™ injection?
Dr. Rivkin is part of Allergan’s National Education Faculty – a group of physicians chosen for their experience and knowledge in the aesthetic field to educate other physicians and nurses in aesthetic injection techniques. Although Juvederm™ was officially released in the US in January of 2007, Dr. Rivkin was one of the physicians selected by Allergan to participate in the clinical trials prior to release. As a result, he was using the product extensively for three months prior to its release. At this point, Dr. Rivkin is one of the most experienced Juvederm™ injectors in the US, based on how many injections he has performed.
What will I experience when I get Juvederm™ injections?
When you come in for your Juvederm™ injection appointment, you will have numbing cream placed on the area that is to be injected for about 10 minutes. If you are having lip augmentation with Juvederm™, you will get a numbing injection on the inside of the lip – similar to a dentist’s numbing injection. Ice will also be applied for numbing and to prevent bruising.
Once the area is numb and iced, Dr. Rivkin will inject Juvederm™ with a very thin needle in a series of small injections. The area injected will then be gently massaged for a minute or two. You will be asked to ice the area injected intermittently – a minute on and a minute off, for the rest of the day. The entire process will take less than 20 minutes after numbing.
Do I have to wait until my previous injection of Restylane or Radiesse has completely disappeared before I get Juvederm™?
No, Juvederm™ can be used on top of Radiesse or Restylane without a problem.
What about laser treatments like Fraxel or treatments like Photofacial or Thermage?
We will frequently do Juvederm™ and Fraxel, Photofacial or Thermage on the same day. If possible, we prefer to do any injection after, not before, these procedures. Having had Juvederm™ (or Restylane or Radiesse for that matter) should not stop you from having Fraxel, Photofacial or Thermage, however. There are studies that show that fillers are not affected by these devices. So, once the filler has had time to integrate into the skin (about a week), it is OK to do these treatments. They will not degrade or dissolve the filler.
What are the side effects?
Bruising and brief redness are rarely encountered. Bumpiness in the area of injection is considerably more rare with Juvederm™ than with Restylane, but it still happens every once in a while. There are no known serious adverse effects associated with the use of Juvederm™.
Will I get bumps when Juvederm™ is dissolving?
Like Restylane, Juvederm™ dissolves evenly and uniformly. Bumps do not form. The area injected will go back to looking exactly the same as it did prior to injection. There will be no loose skin, the lips will not develop extra lines, and the skin will not look stretched out.
Will Juvederm™ remain in the body after it dissolves?
When Juvederm™ dissolves, it is excreted from the body and does not leave even a trace behind.