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Juvederm refers to an injectable filler manufactured by Allergan, Inc., consisting of hyaluronic acid. Used extensively in plastic surgery, Juvederm is claimed to get rid of wrinkles and fine lines that indicate ageing. It comes in a gel form, which when injected in the affected area sends hyaluronic acid that fills up the irregularities and smoothens the nasolabial folds, contributing to a youthful appearance. Unlike Botox, manufactured by the same company, which relaxes the facial muscles but doesn't fill up the deeper folds, Juvederm produces results that last up to a year after the injection is administered. It's also considered more effective than the other collagen-using dermal fillers. Juvederm is approved by the FDA, and is among the newest injectable fillers to hit the market. Juvederm sometimes accompanies Botox in treatment procedures.
Hyaluronic acid isn't an artificially created substance, but a substance that occurs in the skin and adds volume and facilitates hydration. It's effective to take away facial wrinkles, and nasolabial folds. According to the manufacturers Allergan, Inc., Juvederm is one of the smoothest hyaluronic acid fillers available. Injecting Juvederm takes only 15 minutes. The side effects depend on the sensitivity of the patient's skin and generally include swelling, itching, redness and tenderness in the area where the injection is administered.
Juvederm was subjected to various tests before being launched in the US market, to assess its safety and effectiveness. It was compared with the bovine-based Zyplast dermal injectable filler made from collagen. The 146 subjects tested for 24 weeks were injected with Juvederm in one of their nasolabial folds and Zyplast in the other. Following scientific measurements it was proved that Juvederm was more effective. 88 percent of the tested individuals preferred Juvederm to Zyplast. Separate studies were later conducted on 293 individuals, which proved the point. It was also proved to be safe.
The effects of the injection are more long lasting. Once taken, it probably needs to be repeated only a year later. Side effects may in some cases last for a week, and not all patients are happy with Juvederm's effects on their body.
Plastic surgeons often use Juverderm and Botox for the best results on their patients. Juverderm is great for facelifts and anti-ageing since the hyaluronic acid it contains is able to absorb up to 1000 times its weight in water. That works to add new volume under a sagging skin. Hyaluronic acid also binds with collagen (which is the material supporting facial skin in humans) and elastin, resulting in more nutrients being fed into the skin. The end result is, according to the manufacturer, a smooth and naturally youthful look for the face.
Some of the other positive qualities of Juvederm detected by the University of Michigan's study on Restylane, a dermal filler closely related chemically to Juvederm, were that hyaluronic acid makes the skin create new collagen by stretching the existing fibroblasts (certain cells in the skin). With the creation of new collagen, creases and wrinkles in the face disappear. According to Juvederm's manufacturer, even prominent nasolabial folds disappear due to the increase in skin volume. To top it up, the study also detected that hyaluronic acid seemed to prevent the breaking down of already existing collagen.
The manufacturing process of Juvederm is unique in that it comes with a high concentration of cross-linked hyaluronic acid. It's this high concentration that produces results lasting for up to a year. While the other available hyaluronic acid fillers are of a granular consistency that could later cause lumps that need to be operated upon to be removed, Juverderm has a smooth consistency. As a result, the injection process is effortless.
Juvederm is available in Juvederm Ultra and Juvederm Ultra Plus formulations, to be injected by the healthcare professional depending on the depth of the wrinkles and folds. The first 24 hours following the injection and treatment require care. The individual should keep away from excessive heat exposure, strenuous exercise, and alcoholic beverages in order to minimize the occurrence of redness, swelling or itching at the injected site. Temporary reactions can still occur in the injected area such as pain, redness, swelling, bumps and firmness, but which disappear in 7 days or in lesser time depending on the individual and the care taken following the treatment. Makeup can be applied according to the advice provided by the healthcare professional.
Smoothening of the wrinkles could be felt immediately, and that would most likely be what you need till the next year. However, supplementary minor treatments such as "touch up" sessions may be required if the results aren't fully up to your satisfaction. Juvederm should be avoided by individuals with a history of multiple severe allergies and anaphylaxis. Individuals with a history of allergies to bacterial proteins that are gram-positive should also not use Juvederm. The healthcare professional consulted by the individual would discuss the medical condition, and suggest going ahead with the treatment or keeping away from it depending on his examination.
The procedure is carried out in our office by Dr. Spero J. Theodorou.