I got Artefill injections for the smile lines that...
I got Artefill injections for the smile lines that have become more pronounced as 45 approaches. I haven't had any other cosmetic procedures except one chemical peel in April. I went to a place that had done loads of the procedure and the doctor convinced me that Artefill was a fine way to go rather than a temporary filler. I can only say I really wish I'd gone with a temporary filler. I pointed out, very clearly, which lines were troubling me. I explained that it was more important to me to have some lines remain rather than have the filler look strange or fake in my face.
Unfortunately, the doctor decided to fill an area of my face inside the labial folds that I specifically said did not concern me. He seemed a little distracted and I should have made another attempt at the last moment to be sure we were both on the same page. It was surprisingly painful to get the filler and I could feel that the needle was in an area that I wasn't looking to fill, but I thought maybe he had to do it in a certain way, so I let him work. He offered a mirror right away and I looked a bit like a chipmunk. He actually gave me slight jowls and the wrinkles that concerned me had changed very little. I kind of freaked out, but the assistant assured me it would look great in a few days. Instead, it swelled up terribly and turned black and blue. I looked completely bizarre and was terrified I'd have to have some kind of surgery to remove the filler altogether. I was feeling like a vain idiot at that point.
It took a full 10 days for the swelling to go down and most of the bruising to go away. Now, 3 weeks out, I have what appears to be permanent bruising on one side. The swelling is gone and there is some improvement in the wrinkles that concerned me, but I still have the jowls. In addition to that, a small lump the size of a pea formed on the right side in the new jowl area. My face basically looks like I've gained a few pounds and my jaw is more square than before. My husband is bummed as it has changed my face in a fairly subtle, but distinct way. I do think that had the doctor put the fill into the proper location, I'd be reasonably happy, but he really put it in a bad spot and I think, used too much filler.
After some tears and lots of internet research, I decided to try using massage to change the situation. I read that some doctors recommend this after an injection to make sure the filler settles in a soft way. It's possible that the filler remains malleable for some weeks after it's injected. So, in a desperate attempt to avoid an expensive and invasive surgery, I purchased a Wellbox machine to work on my face. It arrived 5 days ago. I felt the machine would be better than just rubbing because I wanted to avoid friction on my fairly delicate skin and the depth and intensity of the directional massage seemed like it would be more effective. I've used it for about 10 minutes on each side in 2 different modes once daily for 5 days. The lump which was almost pea sized when I began is nearly gone. There is also some improvement in the wrinkles I wanted filled in the first place as I've been focussing on moving the filler to that location. It's not done, but I think it's possible that if I do this for a few weeks, it might just work. I may not be able to get completely rid of my new jowls, but it seems very possible to reduce them and reduce the wrinkles I wanted to fill in the first place.
I'm writing this as it seems that many people have problems with their Artefill injections and perhaps the Wellbox massage could help with the lumps that can develop. From what I've read, little can can be changed after 6-8 weeks, but it is possible that the first few weeks offer a window of opportunity to at least subtly change the way the filler sits.
I'll post again in a few weeks and let you all know if the wellbox meaningfully changed the filler look and perhaps the bruising will go away as well.
5 months on
25 Oct 2013
5 months post
It's been 5 months since I had the artefill injections at Silk Touch Med Spa in Idaho. It certainly was not worth it. After all the swelling has gone down, I still have what seems to be light, permanent bruising next to my mouth. The slight jowls created by Dr. Kerr putting the material in exactly the spot I said I didn't want any injection are still there. They have given my mouth a slightly bulldoggish look where before at least that part of my face had a nice delicacy to it. Now it looks heavier and slightly distorted because he didn't follow the natural lines of my mouth and created a weird puffiness. Friends and family have commented on it. I don't know if this would have worked had the doctor listened and put the injection where I had asked, but I will never know. I've never regretted something so much. Mostly my choice of doctor for his lack of listening to my areas of concern, his total lack of follow up after the procedure (He only checked in a month later after my mother demanded a refund of a deposit she'd made) and the lack of information about what could go wrong. The lumps that resulted from the procedure are down, mostly I think from the regular use of the Wellbox machine, but not gone. The bruising hasn't gotten better in months. I am seriously considering plastic surgery to remove this crap from face. I really can't believe I paid someone to mess up my face. I can only say to really, really check up on the doctor you use for this type of procedure and make sure it's a place that is highly recommended. It seems that just about anyone can start a spa and do permanent things to your face with little or no expertise or natural ability to do it well. This guy was an anesthesiologist or something before. Not exactly the practice to prepare you for work of this sort. Just be CAREFUL! If it's done poorly or you have problems it is really hard to get this stuff out. I'll never do anything like it again, but I would recommend temporary fillers for anyone thinking of it. At least if the doc blows it, you get your face back in a few months. With Artefill, it's in there unless you have it surgically removed and it can shift and change over time in ways that are possibly really bad. Live and learn!
Not worth it!!
19 Nov 2013
6 months post
It seems that the site will not allow me to change my opinion to "not worth it" from "not sure". I want to be very clear that it is not at all worth the risk to use artefill unless you have an excellent doctor who you trust implicitly. This doctor seemed fine and then proceeded to put the filler in a location I'd said I was not concerned with. The result is a change to my face for the worse and no effect on the lines I was hoping to reduce with the filler. BE CAREFUL!