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Juvederm Volbella Biofilm Infection - London, UK

I live in London and last year I had Juvederm...

I live in London and last year I had Juvederm Volbella injected into my tear troughs on two separate occasions in June and October by a respected plastic surgeon well-known for treating this area. I had had both Restylene & Juvederm injected into my mason-labial lines & also around my lips a few times over the past dozen years or so with excellent results. However, I was disappointed with the result of the tear trough treatment as I felt It made practically no difference so I went back for more in October. Once again I failed to see much difference. If anything I thought my under-eye "hollows" looked slightly worse. 5 weeks ago I felt discomfort just under my left test duct and noticed a little watery pouch staring to form in the bottom of the tear trough itself. Thinking it was the beginning if my usual winter sinusitis I went to see my ENT specialist who took nasal swabs & put me on to strong antibiotics. The swab results were negative as were the results of a CAT scan. By this time my face was swelling alarmingly on both sides. & thinking it might be a tear trough infection I was referred to an opthamologist and surgeon specialising in tear duct disorders. Upon examining me she asked if I had had any dermal fillers at any time. I told her everything and she explained that she would have to inject me with Hyaluronidaise to dissolve it. Hopefully this would also get rid of the biofilm which is caused by bacteria which cling on to the filler and proceed to counter an immune system or antibiotic attack by forming a sticky protective coating. This can start an inflammatory response causing painful swelling. I have since found out that Juvederm Volbella was made to be used around the lip area as it is softer and also lasts longer than the original. I was not informed of any of this before the procedure. So far I have had 3 sessions of Hyaluronidaise which seems to be working although I have been warned that the biofilm may not have entirely been eradicated and I may need more treatment. The filler had migrated and because it is soft it is difficult to detect. I have also developed three smallish nodules - one in my cheek & two on my upper lip. I am just praying that this nightmare will come to an end soon although there are no guarantees. The skin under my eyes is very discoloured now and the hollows are very noticeable. NOT a good look!! I have also had to take steroid tablets for the swelling together with antihistamine and painkillers. In all a pretty nasty experience!! Please be warned, this is a very real situation that can happen to anyone who has these so -called "safe" procedures . Another myth is that they disappear after several months or so. NOT TRUE! I have been told that traces can remain for YEARS. Please please everyone make sure you are aware of any potential problems before considering having any of these treatments.
Thank you for your post. My wife is experiencing sheer distress at the moment. I will write in more detail as her condition progresses. But for now, I will say that this much: Of course the sales pitch is that Juvederm is simply hyaluronic acid. It is sold as being perfectly safe, since it is pitched as a naturally occurring acid that is present in your body anyway. That is extremely misleading. The hyaluronic acid that occurs in your body does not present itself in the form of a gel substance that is able to harbour biofilm that is highly resistant to antibiotics. The end result is severe swelling, itching, distortion of the face. Sleepless nights due to discomfort caused by the inflammation, and huge distress that words cannot express.
Hi Ruthygs - going through the same thing here in the US. Juvederm injected into my tear trough on the left side only. I'd gone in to get it in the bridge of my nose, which seemed to do okay. But there was some remaining in the syringe, so the doctor suggested filling this hollow I have. Well, all was okay until about 4 months in...the swelling and aching began and everyone was confused. Me, the doctor who injected it and the plastic surgeon who did my mid face implants in 1012 (which WERE perfect until now). I told the juve doctor I had implants, so he said it was okay. And even my PS who put them in said normally it would be fine to get fillers, but to be cautious. Well, I'm paying for that "sure why not" decision. God how I regret it. I have learned more than I ever wanted to know about biofilm, that's for sure. Right now, I'm being treated by the PS who did the implants. We're hoping it's not affected by the infection, but not sure yet. Going for a 4th injection of hyaluroidase soon and more, stronger antibiotics to keep pushing through this. I will NEVER get fillers again. This has been such a lesson...and torture. I will admit, it has made me think long and hard about accepting myself as I am. Oh God, do I appreciate my face...my perfect face prior to this stupid split second decision. How are you doing these days? I hope you are better. I learn so much from realself and these wonderful people sharing their stories. One of the best resources is a woman called SadieBee. Check out her posts...she went through the same thing! I wish you the best and keep us posted. And I will do the same. Biggyc in Atlanta, GA
Oh, meant to add - SadieBee went though it and has since recovered. That gives me hope! Good luck to you!
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