There are a number of products on the market that are used to fill areas of the face that have lost volume or have developed deep wrinkles as part of the aging process. These filler procedures are performed in the office, and there is minimal down time. Although these products have their indications, they are not substitutes for patients that would require a surgical procedure to correct significant sagging skin or volume loss.
Common areas that are treated with fillers are the nasolabial fold areas, upper and lower lips, corners of the mouth and upper cheeks for volume restoration over the cheek bones.
Dr. Fleming offers JUVÉDERM® XC injectable gel, which is a U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved dermal filler that according to its manufacturer, Allergan, Inc., is designed to “temporarily treat moderate to severe facial wrinkles and folds such as nasolabial folds” in people older than 21. Unlike the original JUVÉDERM injectable gel, JUVÉDERM XC is infused with lidocaine to make its injection more comfortable.
JUVÉDERM XC is a smooth-consistency gel that restores volume to the skin, and smooths away moderate-to-severe facial wrinkles and folds. It is made of hyaluronic acid (HA), a sugar that occurs naturally in the body. In terms of the skin, HA’s role is to deliver nutrients and hydration, and act as a cushioning agent. Young, healthy skin contains a lot of HA, but factors that include aging and sun exposure reduce the amount, causing skin to lose structure and volume. JUVÉDERM XC is most effective in improving the appearance of nasolabial folds, the lines that run from the bottom of the nose to the corner of the mouth on both sides of the face.
JUVÉDERM XC Injectable Gel Procedure
JUVÉDERM XC injections take about 15 minutes to administer in a doctor’s office. A fine needle is used for the injection, which is given under the skin in the targeted area to add volume or fill in wrinkles and folds. Because JUVÉDERM XC contains lidocaine to improve comfort, an anesthetic may not be needed. However, a doctor may still elect to use a topical anesthetic on the area to be treated before giving the injection. Afterword, the doctor may gently massage the treated area(s).
Once treatment is completed, patients can return, with virtually no downtime, to their regular activities. For the first 24 hours after treatment, to reduce the risk of complications, patients should avoid strenuous exercise, excessive sun or heat exposure, and alcohol consumption.
What does Juvederm® do? How is it different from Botox®?
Juvederm is very effective in smoothing out and filling in bothersome wrinkles and lines, particularly in the lower part of the face. It has several advantages over other filler-type materials such as collagen; it lasts longer and causes very little adverse reaction. Juvederm® and Botox® (botulinum toxin) often are used in a complementary fashion. While Juvederm is best for the lower face, Botox® is great for wrinkles that occur in the upper face – crow’s feet or the vertical frown lines between the eyebrows – because it paralyzes muscles stopping the skin from wrinkling.
If I have Juvederm, how often must I repeat the injections?
Juvederm injections last for about 12 months, and can also be repeated as needed. A newer Juvederm product, called Voluma is designed to be injected deeply over the cheek bones to provide fuller cheeks and give a lifting effect. This product may last up to 2 years.
Results Of JUVÉDERM XC Injectable Gel
The results of JUVÉDERM XC are visible immediately after injection; any swelling and bruising, to which ice can be applied, should subside during the next few days. Results can last 6 to 9 months, and, in some cases, up to year. However, according to its manufacturer, “Results from injectable dermal filler vary and correction is temporary. Supplemental ‘touch up’ treatments may be required to achieve and maintain optimal correction of wrinkles and folds.”
Risks Of JUVÉDERM XC Injectable Gel
Although JUVÉDERM XC is considered safe, there is a risk of side effects. They are usually limited to the injection site, and include the following:
- Pain or tenderness
- Lumps or bumps
For customized treatment, Allergan, Inc., offers two types of JUVÉDERM XC: JUVÉDERM Ultra XC, which is suitable for superficial facial lines and folds, and JUVÉDERM Ultra Plus XC, a stronger formulation that is used for deeper facial folds and lines. JUVÉDERM XC is the first HA filler that is FDA-approved for use on people of color.