611 W. Union Street
Benson, AZ 85602
(520) 586-0800

member support line
M-F 5pm-8pm
24/7 weekends/holidays

AzCH Nurse Assist Line


611 W. Union Street
Benson, AZ 85602
(520) 586-0800

AzCH Nurse Assist Line


powered by centersite dot net
Medical Disorders
Basic InformationLookupsLatest News
Is Rise in Liver Damage Tied to More Drinking During Lockdowns?Bike-Linked Head Injuries Plummet for U.S. Kids, But Not AdultsDialysis Patients Have Weaker Response to COVID Vaccine: StudyWith New Mask Guidance Comes the Challenge of Following ItWeight-Loss Surgery Might Also Help Prevent CataractsAHA News: What to Tell Your Young Teen About Their Shot at the COVID-19 VaccineWhat Works Best to Ease Recurrent Ear Infections in Kids?Mixing COVID Vaccines Might Raise Odds for Minor Reactions: StudyCOVID More Lethal for People Living With HIVNew Drug Shows Promise Against Tough-to-Manage AsthmaFully Vaccinated Can Shed Masks in Most Outdoor, Indoor Settings: CDCAHA News: 5 Things to Know About Blood Pressure Before It's a ProblemModerna Vaccine Can Trigger Red, Itchy 'COVID Arm,' But It's TemporaryCould a Vaccine Against Future Pandemics Be on the Way?Debunking Social Media Myth, Study Finds COVID Vaccine Won't Harm PlacentaU.S. Seniors Are Getting Fewer Abdominal SurgeriesMost Severe COVID Cases Involve Neuro Issues, and They're More Often FatalAny COVID-19 Infection Raises Odds for Lingering Symptoms, Study FindsNew Insights Into Treating Mild Head InjuriesAlcohol Is No Friend to Social DistancingGene-Targeted Drug Shows Promise Against a Form of Pancreatic CancerFDA Approves Emergency Use of Pfizer Vaccine for Those Aged 12 to 15Ibuprofen, Similar Painkillers Won't Raise Risks for COVID PatientsObesity Raises Odds for Many Common CancersAsthma Attacks Plummeted During PandemicWhy Sleep Raises Risk for Sudden Death in People With EpilepsyLockdown Loneliness Making Things Even Tougher for Cancer PatientsCOVID Vaccines May Still Leave Organ Transplant Recipients UnprotectedPfizer, Moderna or J&J? An Expert Answers Your QuestionsHow Summer Camps Can Shield Your Kids from Allergies, Asthma & COVIDCould Your Child Have a Heart Defect? Know the Warning SignsGene Tied to Balding May Also Raise COVID Risks for MenTime Spent in ICU Linked to Higher Odds for Suicide LaterState of Mind Matters for Survival After Heart AttackFailing Kidneys Could Bring Higher Dementia RiskAir Pollution Can Harm Kids' Hearts for a LifetimePoll Finds Many Parents Hesitant to Get Younger Kids VaccinatedObesity More Deadly for Men Than Women When COVID StrikesIsrael Study: Pfizer Vaccine Gives 95% Protection Against Illness, Hospitalization & DeathReal-World Studies Show Pfizer Vaccine Shields Against COVID Variants1 in 4 U.S. Teens Has Had a Concussion: StudyWhat's the Right Amount of Sleep for a Healthy Heart?U.S. COVID Outlook Shows Big Improvement by July'Prediabetes' Raises Odds for Heart Attack, StrokeA Vitamin Could Be Key to Women's Pain After Knee ReplacementBiden Sets New Goal of Vaccinating 70% of Americans by July 4Wildfires Are Changing the Seasonal Air Quality of the U.S. WestMany Americans Wrong About Sun's Skin Cancer Dangers: PollNot Just About Antibodies: Why mRNA COVID Vaccines May Shield From VariantsYou Got Your COVID Shot: What to Do With That Vaccine Card
Questions and AnswersLinksBook Reviews
Related Topics

Men's Health
Women's Health

Had Facial Fillers? What You Need to Know About COVID Vaccines

HealthDay News
by By Serena McNiff HealthDay Reporter
Updated: Apr 12th 2021

new article illustration

MONDAY, April 12, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Once you've landed that coveted coronavirus vaccine appointment, you'll likely have to fill out a form on your medical history and whether you're allergic to any of the vaccine's ingredients. But there could be another question waiting for you: Have you ever had dermal filler injections?

That's because -- in rare cases -- people who've had the face-plumping injections can develop a mild, temporary swelling at the site of the filler after getting their shots.

Still, there's no reason to panic, experts say, because such a reaction does not mean the vaccines aren't safe. Barring any allergies or other medical reasons to avoid vaccination, people with fillers can and should get vaccinated, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"Lots of people get facial fillers, and the likelihood of developing this kind of a reaction to the vaccine is exceptionally rare," said Dr. Esther Freeman, director of Global Health Dermatology at Massachusetts General Hospital, in Boston. "So, this does not mean that everybody who gets facial fillers will get this kind of a reaction. It's still very unusual."

If you are one of the unlucky few whose fillers swell up after getting vaccinated, Freeman said you should reach out to a dermatologist, who will most likely recommend antihistamines or steroids to help resolve the swelling a little bit faster.

But, "it's really important to know that this is not life-threatening," Freeman added.

For those who are unfamiliar, dermal fillers are used to "lift, shape, contour or plump the tissues of the face" using an injectable gel made of hyaluronic acid, which occurs naturally in the skin, said Dr. Lara Devgan, a board-certified plastic surgeon in New York City.

Cosmetic fillers are not the same as Botox, as the filler stays under the skin for an extended period while Botox is quickly absorbed after it relaxes muscles and flattens wrinkles, she explained.

And instances of delayed swelling related to dermal fillers are not the same as allergic reactions to the vaccine, which are also rare but are more serious. After receiving a COVID-19 vaccine, you'll need to stick around for at least 15 minutes, as allergic reactions typically occur within that tight time frame.

"The reason that they have you wait after a vaccine is for what is called an immediate-type allergic reaction, which the CDC defines as an allergic reaction that happens within the first four hours after vaccination," Freeman explained.

"And those include things like anaphylaxis and difficulty breathing. The filler reactions are not those," she added. "They are a completely different kind of reaction that usually doesn't start until the next day or a couple of days later. It has no ability for it to turn into anaphylaxis, which is the severe allergic reaction."

Fears surrounding filler-related vaccine reactions first emerged in December when health officials pored over data from Moderna and Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine trials. The data revealed that three people who had cosmetic filler injections in their face saw their filler area swell up temporarily, approximately one to two days after getting the Moderna vaccine.

Plastic surgeons like Devgan began fielding calls from concerned patients whose fears of filler-related swelling were so great that they considered refusing the vaccine.

There were no other reports of filler-related swelling in the vaccine trials, other than these three instances that occurred out of the over 15,000 people enrolled in the Moderna trial. Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson's vaccines (the other vaccines currently authorized in the United States) reported no such reactions in their trials.

Since December, Freeman and a group of dermatologists across the United States have been collecting reports of skin reactions that have occurred following vaccination with either Moderna or Pfizer's mRNA vaccines.

The team published a paper in the April 7 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology detailing 414 patients who reported one or more vaccine-related skin reactions between December 2020 and February 2021, including nine reports of swelling at the site of cosmetic fillers. Three of the nine occurred after the first dose of the Moderna vaccine, five after the second Moderna dose, and one after the second Pfizer dose. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine was not included in their data, as it was not yet authorized for emergency use when the study began.

Similar skin reactions have been reported after other vaccines like the flu vaccine and even after other viral illnesses, experts said.

"We also have patients who report swelling for a day or two when they get a flu shot, when they eat salty food, after being in a sauna or steam room, or when they participate in any activity that gives them a little bit of diffuse inflammation," Devgan noted.

"I think people have realized that the COVID vaccine is very important from a public health standpoint, and that some of the early fears about filler reactions have been quelled by good reporting and have been placed in a broader context," Devgan said. "I think most of the patients that I'm talking to understand the cost-benefit analysis of the vaccine versus a possible transient swelling around injectable fillers. In that question, the vaccine wins."

More information

Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for more on coronavirus vaccines.

SOURCES: Esther Freeman, MD, board-certified dermatologist, director, Global Health Dermatology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston; Lara Devgan, MD, board-certified plastic surgeon, New York City; Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, April 7, 2021