Should my Left over Juvederm Have Been Discarded?

I went to a dermatolgist in the Mpls Area in May,purchased my juvederam plus for 595.00. Only a small portion was used. I according to the dermatolgits had plenty left over to use at my next visit. I was not told that the remaing juvederm ( that I had paid for and purchased) would be discarded in 30 days,due to several scheduling conflicts, his vacatattion, taking a day off, I was unable to get back to the office until Oct. I had spoke to his staff several times over the course of trying to make my follow up appoitmetn and no one ever told me that I needed to come in and have the rest injected in 30 days. Shouldnt the dermatolgist office have to refund me the difference of what I paid for and did not use? After all it was my product..at least I should have been notified before it was discarded. Can you provide a suggestion?

Doctor Answers (8)

Yes, you should have been informed

+3

Dear Mplsgal,

It sounds like you were not given the proper information from your physician. Patient education is very important and had you been informed that you needed to use the remaining product within 30 days things would have resolved much differenlty. Lack of information leaves many patients unhappy, especially if that information leads to money lost.

Every office is different and you will need to contact the office to see how they go about refunds or possibly giving you a credit.

I hope everything works out for you.

Kao Plastic Surgery


Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon

Re-using filler

+1
Here are 3 separate studies showing the safety of re-injecting unused filler in the same patient. The science says it is safe...at least within 6 months.

Bellew SG, Carroll KC, Weiss MA, Weiss RA. Sterility of stored nonanimal, stabilized hyaluronic acid gel syringes after patient injection. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2005;52:988–90.

Davis K, Bottone EJ, Lucas D, Lebwohl M. Sterility of refrigerated injectable collagen syringes after injection of patient. J Am Acad Dermatol. 1992;27:959–61.

Culligan PJ, Koduri S, Heit MH, Rackley R, Thomson RB, Schwabe L, et al. The safety of reusing injectable collagen: A multicenter microbiological study. Int Urogynecol J Pelvic Floor Dysfunct. 2002;13:232–4.

Sheila Nazarian, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Communication

+1

Yes, you had the right to be properly informed of the storing and billing policies of the office. It is best to use the juvederm on the same day and generally no longer than 1 week due to risk of contamination. Arrangements to use the product for an unknown future date is bound to lead to misunderstandings with the patient.

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

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Storing partially used Juvederm not safe

+1

Hi Mplsgal,

At our practice, all dermal fillers syringes are used completely on the day of injection. While it is possible to store dermal fillers for short periods of time, it's safer not to and we take a cautionary approach in this regard. In addition, there are dermal fillers including Restylane and Juvederm that offer smaller than 1 cc syringes and this small an amount should not need to be stored.

Unfortunately, your practitioner should have better communicated this policy with you before you left that day and we agree that you should not have to pay full price for the next one. Good luck.

Harold J. Kaplan, MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Unused Juvederm should be discarded.

+1

Hi.

In New York City, we discard any unused Juvederm on the same day, because of the possible risk of contamination.  It's really better to waste some than to risk an infection, don't you think?

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Physician did the right thing though poor communication

+1

Your dermatologist certainly did the correct thing in discarding the Juvderm. Juvederm is a polysaccharide molecule ( glycoaminoglycan) and this means it is essentially a sugar molecule. Unlike collagen, bacteria like to munch on sugar molecules. This makes the injection of possibly bacteria-laden Juvderm risky. I will save the refrigerated syringe only one week.

The problem in your situation is that you were not told that your syringe will be discarded. I bet that if you bring your complaint to your dermatologist he/she will be willing to inject a syringe at cost. This to me seems like a good compromise since you will be retained as a happy patient.

Incidentally, some years ago, I had a patient return to see me nearly TWO years after I had placed Zyderm (collagen). When we informed her that the syringe had been discarded long ago, she wanted her money back for the whole treatment. I offered the same compromise I am suggesting to you and it was taken.

Good luck.

Arnold R. Oppenheim, MD
Virginia Beach Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Juvederm storage after partial usage is not recommended

+1

Storing Juvederm or any other filler after it is even only partially used is not recommended by the manufacturers. If there is left over, I carefully label and store it, but inform patients that I will keep it for 2 weeks only to allow the patient to see if they need more after the swelling subsides. If they do not return or call for additional product, I discard it.

Steven Wallach, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Choose Your Physician Carefully

+1

Hi Minn gal,

Different practices have different policies regarding saving and reusing fillers. Sounds like poor communication, poor patient relations, and poor business practice. You can ask for the difference back or have them inject an equivalent amount still owed to you (if you still can trust the practice). The worst that can happen is that they say no and lose you, your friends, relatives, and neighbors as potential patients. Good luck and be well.

Dr. P

Michael A. Persky, MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.