My doctor took collagen from my TT revision and inserted it into my lips for volume, is this also called alloderm? (photos)

My doctor took collagen material from my TT revision and inserted it into my lips for volume (is this also called alloderm?) Wondering if anyone has experience in this and what I should expect in the next couple of days/weeks. I am one day post op with these pics. Is this a more permanent filling than fat? Most posts discuss liquid collagen or material collagen from donor and there seems to be no sources for my topic. Any input would be appreciated.

Doctor Answers 5

Lip Augmentation with Alloderm and other Choices

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Most likely, Your surgeon used a  dermal graft with or without underlying fat. The dermis is the deeper and thicker layer (epidermis is the outer layer) for your #LipAugmentation. This is Not Alloderm but also - Not a bad choice as you already had the tissue available that would otherwise be discarded. I prefer either fat injections- less predictable but more permanent or Juvederm which has to be repeated.

Use of your own dermis is not the same as Alloderm from a cadaver

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Use of your own de-epithelialized (epidermis removed) dermis is similar to Alloderm, however your own tissues contain living cellular elements that you will tolerate without immune reaction when they are prepared and grafted elsewhere in your body.  You would not tolerate the unprocessed dermis from another individual, as a transplant, as you would respond with a graft rejection reaction, unless treated with immunosuppressive drugs, like after a kidney transplant. Alloderm and the other human acellular dermal grafts (Neoform and Flex-HD) are harvested from cadavers and then processed to remove all living cellular elements that would cause a transplant immune rejection reaction, and they thus only contain a scaffold of human collagen protein, which is the same in all humans, and thus does not cause an immune rejection response. Such grafts are eventually incorporated into the body and then replaced with an individual's on collagen, acting as a scaffold on which cellular deposition and growth can occur.  By the way, acellular dermal grafts to not work very well in the lips as they are unable to easily be incorporated by blood vessel ingrowth.  I have not done one of these in a long time, because of the swelling that occurs, and the worry that ensues, but once the swelling subsides, the results tend to look good, and the tissues are usually incorporated into your tissues. Swelling may last 2 weeks or more.  Presently I prefer injections of JuveDerm, as it is readily available, well-tolerated, and has low risk in experienced hands.  A link is found below. Ask your surgeon for more information about what to expect.       

Best wishes,    

Tom DeWire, MD, FACS    

Richmond, VA 

Thomas M. DeWire Sr., MD (retired)
Richmond Plastic Surgeon

Dermal graft

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Alloderm is donated skin and its processed so what remains is the collagen.  When your own skin is used in this way, it is called a dermal graft and also works well as a filler for lips. 

My doctor took collagen from my TT revision and inserted it into my lips for volume, is this also called alloderm?

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Thank you for your question! AlloDerm technically is a brand name product made from Lifecell (others include FlexHD, AlloMax, etc.). It is an allograft harvested from cadaveric donors to a tissue bank. It is an acellular dermal matrix in which the cells have been removed, leaving a collagen mesh, in which, theoretically, your own surrounding tissue will grow within, vascularize, and it will serve as a collagen framework. When your own tissue is used, it is an autograft. Fat grafts are also a great modality for a volume filler. Autografts will likely resorb less than fat as it is known that some fat will will not take within its bed (somewhere between 60-90% will ultimately survive). Other fillers are those that you stated as well as temporary collagen fillers (e.g., Juvederm, Radiesse, Sculptra, etc.) Hope that this helps.

Alloderm is different from your own skin

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Alloderm is made from skin donated to skin banks. It is processed in a way that removes all of the cells so what remains is the collagen matrix that is the structural part of skin. Because this is identical in everyone, it is not rejected as an organ transplant would. Your own cells move in and transform Alloderm into living tissue. When your own skin is used in this way, it is called a dermal autograft. It will probably last longer than fat grafts to the lips. Swelling for the first few days is normal.

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.