As you age, your skin loses some of its hyaluronic acid, a process that is sped up if you’ve spent a lot of time in the sun. Juvederm is a smooth injectable gel that can restore the skin’s volume and smooth away facial wrinkles and folds, including those highly visible ones around the mouth and nose and on the forehead. There are two types of Juvederm: Juvederm XC, which is used to correct moderate to severe facial wrinkles around the nose and mouth, and Juvederm Voluma XC, which is FDA-approved for instantly adding volume to the cheeks. Hyaluronic acid injections also appears to stimulate the production of collagen and elastin, two proteins that contribute to the skin’s fullness and elasticity.
Juvederm’s manufacturer (Allergan) uses a chemical “cross-linking” process called HYLACROSS that binds the individual chains of hyaluronic acid into a long-lasting gel with a very smooth consistency. Because of the gel’s smoothness, your face also looks and feels smooth and natural.
What Does It Treat?
Juvederm contains a naturally occurring sugar called hyaluronic acid, which has the remarkably helpful property of binding to water. As the acid attracts water, it “plumps up” the skin, filling and smoothing out any surface wrinkles. In essence, it helps replace the cushion of fatty tissue that we lose as we age and as our skin becomes damaged by the sun’s ultraviolet light.
What Is the Treatment Like?
Most treatment sessions take only about 15 minutes. As with all dermal fillers, Juvederm is injected into the treatment area with an extremely fine needle. Any discomfort is usually minimal, although your physician may numb your skin with a topical anesthetic beforehand. You won’t need any pre-treatment allergy testing, however, because Juvederm doesn’t contain any allergy-causing animal-derived ingredients. It’s entirely biodegradable.
How Much Does Juvederm Cost?
For information regarding pricing see Cost and Pricing.
How Long Does It Last?
You’ll start to see the effects of the treatment immediately. Studies conducted by the manufacturer, Allergen, report that Juvederm XC results last 9 to 12 months and Juvederm Voluma can add volume for up to two years.
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What are the Possible Side Effects?
Side effects tend to be minor and are typical for any kind of injectable filler. They include swelling of the skin around the injection site, redness, bruising (which may be increased if you’re taking blood thinners), bumps, and skin irritation. These should pass within a week. If symptoms persist, call your doctor.
Also, be sure to inform your doctor of any drugs you’re taking, as they may impact your treatment. If you have any history of severe allergies (including a history of allergies to gram-positive bacterial proteins — many dermal fillers contain trace amounts of these) you should not be treated with Juvederm.