Dangers of Long-Term Lip Filler
After Kylie Jenner became the unintentional spokesperson for lip injections starting at a very young age, a wave of lip-filler love hit North America.
This procedure, which previously had not been so mainstream for young girls, quickly took over the beauty industry. What society has forgotten, is that this procedure was created as a treatment for those who had lost the fullness of their lips due to aging.
Some issues which often young boys and girls may overlook, is with repeated plumping using filler, the filler can act as a tissue expander, which may eventually cause the lips to deflate and potentially sag. This is something that many doctors will not disclose to their patients, and only immediate risks are discussed. The remedy to this potential sagging and deflation is lip reduction surgery which trims away excess skin and which can also leave scarring. Granulomas (inflammatory nodules) following filler injections are quite common as well, and can happen either immediately or be delayed; immediate ones can be a sign of infection and antibiotics may be required. This is the body’s response to the foreign product (filler) and may cause a small, hard and often painful bump in the body of the lip. The only way to treat this problem is with injection of hyaluronidase, or an excision or debridement of the nodule.
Doctors often tell their patients that filler lasts six months to a year, but on MRI scans it was found that fillers can last up to five years and they can migrate. Dr. Gavin Chan started to question how long fillers really do last, after he had some patients come in for correctional treatment of puffy under-eye bulges, years after they had a filler treatment. These bulges disappeared with hyaluronidase (an enzyme used to dissolve filler). This MRI showed how one of his patients who had lip injections for many years had migrated upwards above the lip line and below her nose (the duck lip). For ethical reasons, it is recommended that good Cosmetic Doctors will have had the training and experience to make sure they let their patients know if they’ve had enough dermal filler ‘for now’. The Cosmetic Industry is driven by profit and this results in patients being coerced into getting excessive dermal filler treatments which are unnecessary.
Andrew Jacono, a world renowned NYC facial Plastic Surgeon, explains how filler can stretch lip tissues which accelerates the aging process “because those tissues aren’t going to bounce back the same way as you get older.” (Brucculieri, 2019) “Filler Fatigue” is being seen which describes what happens when someone has too much filler and over time the filler stretches the skin, which means you need more filler with each visit, which continues to then get out of hand.
It is important to see physicians who have a great reputation and who will be honest with you. An alternative treatment to help with sagging and aging are PDO threads, which lift instead of fill. This is the perfect treatment for those who want something which induces collagen production and can lift skin and smooth lines.