Mar 21

Restylane vs Juvederm: Much ado about nothing?

Indications for fillers

About a year ago, the makers of Botox came out with their new filler, Juvederm. And in an interesting marketing ploy, they allowed physicians from around the country to treat 10,000 patients with Juvederm for free who had previously been treated with Restylane. The idea was that it would get their name out there and allow doctors experience with the new product.

In this way, the makers of Juvederm believed that they would by year end probably get 10% of the injectable filler market which was largely dominated by Restylane. The result: by year end it appears that Juvederm had captured some 25% of the patients who were getting injectible fillers.

You might be wondering, so what does this all mean?

If you are one of the one million Americans who used injections to smooth out wrinkles, nasolabial folds, or to plump up lips, you probably have come to realize that there are very few substantive differences between these 2 products. They are both transparent gels made of hyaluronic acid, a complex chain of sugar molecules, which is found naturally throughout the body in skin and joints. Unlike Botox, which works by temporarily paralyzing the muscles underlying wrinkles, these injectables temporarily fill out depleted areas, adding volume to the skin. And whether you got Restylane or Juvederm was probably the result of some preference your physician had.

Of course, this may all change with the introduction into the market in the near future of more permanent fillers like Artefill (keep an eye out for Aquamid).

But it also leaves us wondering if the makers of Restylane will return the favor when they introduce their new Botox- like product- Myobloc- late this year.

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