What is Sculptra?
Sculptra is an injectable filler that is designed by Sanofi Aventis to treat deep-set and severe facial lines such as nasolabial folds and marionette lines. It is also indicated for volumising sunken facial regions like the cheeks and temples in patients who are suffering from Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infections. This soft tissue implant is made of poly-L-lactic acid (PLLA), a non-toxic and synthetic polymer that is completely biodegradable.
What is Juvederm Voluma?
Juvederm Voluma is a hyaluronic acid-based dermal filler that is manufactured by Allergan. This synthetic implant is formulated with 20mg/mL of cross-linked hyaluronic acid and 3mg/mL of fast-acting lidocaine to instantly volumise deep skin depressions and hollow facial regions like the temples and chin.
What is the difference between Sculptra vs Juvederm Voluma?
The major differences between these 2 medical devices are detailed below:
- The mechanism of action: The active ingredient in Sculptra, PLLA compound, is renowned for its biostimulating property. Once injected intradermally into the skin, PLLA-based filler encourages the fibroblasts—collagen-producing cells—to synthesise new collagen fibres, resulting in gradual improvements of the deep-set wrinkles. Juvederm Voluma, on the other hand, does not stimulate the growth of new collagen fibres. Instead, the hyaluronic acid implant instantly restores volume in deep skin depressions by reinforcing the weakened skin structures.
- The administration technique: Sculptra is supplied as freeze-dried micro particles of PLLA that must be reconstituted into a suspension with 5ml of sterile water. The prepared suspension can then be injected into the subcutaneous or deep dermis layer of the problematic areas using linear threading technique. This technique simply involves injecting the filler suspension as the needle is withdrawn from the skin. Juvederm Voluma is presented in a ready-to-use 1ml syringe. This filler gel can be instantly administered via deep dermis, subcutaneous or upper periostea (above the bone) injections.
- The duration of action: Though both these volumising implants have long residence time, Sculptra provides volumising effects that could last for up to 25 months while the aesthetic improvements of Juvéderm Voluma last for about 18 months. Nevertheless, both these implants are not permanent solution to deep-set wrinkles and skin depressions.
- Methods to reverse the effects: Incorrect placement of Sculptra, though is difficult, can be done by surgically removing the treated area with undesirable side effects. Steroids will only work if the treated areas are affected by inflammation or formation of granuloma. Juvederm Voluma, conversely, can be easily dissolved using hyaluronidase injections.