Why Did my Body Metastasize Juvederm Lip Injections So Quickly?

I had Juvederm (1 vial) injected, for the first time, in both my upper and lower lips a little over a month ago. I have lumps on the inside of just my upper lip that I have continued to massage, but they do not appear to go down at all, and even swell more as the day progresses (I'm assuming from water rentention?). In addtion, I feel as if my body has already, I guess, metabolically absorbed the Juverderm, as I am no longer seeing the great results that I did in the beginning. I am healthy, with no immuno-deficiencies, etc. Why did my body absorb the Juvederm so quickly, and why does my swelling seem to get worse? What advice would you give?

Doctor Answers 8

Juvederm does not metastasize

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Juvederm is an excellent hyaluronic acid based injectable that can be used effectively for facial contouring.

Juvederm is commonly used around the lips, the smile lines, the marionette lines, under deep wrinkles, under deep scars, and even under the area of the eye.

Over time, your body will help break down the Juvederm that was injected. For this reason, you may see a feeding of your result after 9 to 10 months. Juvederm however never metastasizes. When we use the word metastasis we are speaking of cancer that moves from its initial location to another part of the body.

Some factors affect Juvederm longevity

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The injection techniques used are critical in creating a long term effect. Both the amount of filler injected and the layer it is injected into can be criticial in the amount of time a filler lasts.

Be sure to find an experienced injector. Also be sure to recognize that most injectables are "off label" for use in the lips.

I hope this helps.

See your injector

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It would be best if you book a follow up appointment with your injector to see what's going on. You may have excess product that can be dissolved with hyaluronidase.

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Juvederm Lip Injections Duration

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Patients frequently confuse the effects from the initial swelling post treatment with the expected results especially around the mouth. Lumps are generally an indication of poor technique. Consult with your injector as he or she knows the specifics of the case and about you. Ensure that your injector is an experienced and expert physician injector.

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

How long does Juvederm last?

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A Juvederm injection to the nasolabial fold will generally last up to one year.  On some individuals I have seen it last longer and on others not as long.  It all depends upon the rate at which your body metabolizes the product.

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Juvederm in the lips

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The initial results you saw may have been partially from swelling. Now that you are more than a month out and seeing that the lips are not as full, you may just need more material. 

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Juvederm does not metastasize.

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Hi! Just going by your description (and patients can certainly misinterpret findings), it sounds like the Juvederm was injected too deep in your upper lip, so that you have lumps on the inside and not enough improvement on the outside.

Live with this for another month. If the lumps really bother you ( I assume they cannot be seen), then they can be dissolved with hyaluronidase injections. Otherwise, they will slowly disappear in the next few months.

Howw a filler is injected is MUCH more important than which filler is used.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

Hyaluronic acid fillers in the lips do not last very long.

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These fillers generally do not last very long in the lips. I don't think there is anything particularly unusual about your case. Juvederm on average can last about 3 months in the lips, but for some people, it seems to last just a little over a month in this area area of the face in which there is a significant amount of movement.

I would hold the massaging at this point and consider being evaluated for the lumps inside the lips by the individual who performed your injections, though they should self resolve with time.

You might also ask whomever performed the injections whether it was Juvederm ultra or ultra plus that was injected. The ultra plus product contains a higher concentration of hyaluronic acid and tends to last longer than the ultra.

Bryan K. Chen, MD
San Diego Dermatologist

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.