Radiesse Nightmare - Facial Cellulitis and Picc Line - Hartford, CT

On January 17, 2011 I went for a consultation with...

On January 17, 2011 I went for a consultation with an ocular surgeon who was recommended to me for fillers and he talked me into Radiesse in my cheeks for lifting the folds.

For starters he took forever to do the injections and at one point it felt like he was by my teeth and he asked if he was hurting me. I said, "YES" and I could feel him move the needle. When he was done I could not smile and he said he must have done a nerve block on me. It was hours before I could smile and my cheeks looked like a who from whoville (awful).

He also gave me some perlane. A couple of days later I started to get left sided facial pain and two weeks later I was being admitted to the hospital with facial cellulitis. I had blown up like a balloon and had a scalded red face. I wound up having to have a picc line to my heart receiving 6 hours of antibiotics a day (3 hours in the morning and 3 hours at night of vancoymcin). When I stopped the vancoymcin they kept the picc line in for a little while and a week later pulled it out because all my blood work came back normal. Well, the nightmare doesn't end - last week I had to fly home from a family vacation from a cruise ship because I had a relapse. I flew home and went to see my Infectious Disease who put me on Zyvox (the strongest oral antibiotic out there) but it didn't work and several days later I am back on the picc line.

I need answers because my ID doc has never had a patient like me and has no clue as to what will happen - no comforting. I'm concerned my infection went into the bone because Radiesse is injected deep down by the bone - the doctor also admitted to hitting the nerve on the left side of the face by the nose. As it stands now I have an appointment for a second opinion with a ID doc to see what they think. My current doc wants to keep me on vancoymcin for 3 weeks this time and stop while keeping the picc line in to see what happens. I'm not comfortable with that as when I relapse I blow up like a balloon and turn red with a burning sensation like acid all over my face - the most painful thing I have ever experienced in my life!!!

I have been reading these forums for weeks and would like some advice from anyone (doctors or other readers). I would like to know if anyone has experienced this and, if so, who did they see and what was the outcome. I would also like to know if it would be okay to dissolve the perlane with h'dase as I hear the bacteria can live around the product. I don't want to end up deformed but want this infection out of my body. The other question is can you dissolve perlane while on antiobiotics once the infection has calmed down?

Lastly, is there anyway for Radiesse to be removed? Has anyone ever done it successfully? I've had CTA's and MRA's during all this that were able to see where the product was placed and there is an area on my left cheek that was placed superfically and is causing some nerve pain. Would it be feasible at this point to dissolve the HA filler, remove the superficial Radiesse and have a midface lift at the same time to correct all this mess. I'm horrified and very saddened that this has affected my life in the way it has - no quality of life since January of this year. Please help me find some answers to get myself well and put back together.


get a sonic care toothbruth. hold the back of the toothbrush up, against the area that has radiesse in it. it will slowly break up the area, allowing the body to absorb the radiesse. I know because I've had radiesse in the sides of my face (nasolabial lines) for 5 years. I was overfilled & only the top 1" part dissolved. the rest (going down to almost my jawline has remained - about 50-60% since. I started using my sonicare toothbrush because no one had any answers (including all the doctors on here). they're no help. no one wants to surgically remove the radiesse, as it'll probably cause more problems. any filler will always dissolve faster in more mobile areas of the face. I've been doing the sonicare toothbrush remedy for about 3 weeks now & can start to see a difference. I was only doing it 2x a week. but now that I'm seeing improvement, I've moved it up to every day. (I just do it while watching tv & have a small mirror to make sure I'm holding it right on top of the area). I hope that helps! I can truly empathize with you. I personally think radiesse should be banned, as there's no way to remove it & it mimics bone more than fat tissue.
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Welcome to the Radiesse community. Oh my, I am so sorry you are dealing with all this. Especially when your doctor doesn't know what to do, that makes it even worse. I checked around the site and found the same question in our doctor Q&A that you had on whether Radiesse can be removed. 19 doctors responded so you might want to check it out. Please keep us updated.

Thanks so much for the review,


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My advice to this question is if you are considering any injections go to a plastic surgeon who knows what they are doing and how to fix something if it goes wrong.

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