Risk of Infection, High Rate of Absorption with HA Fillers and Whether or Not to Use Fat Transfer Instead?

I was told by my doctor in Australia that there is quite a high risk of infection with the artificial fillers for marionette lines, can one use fat transfer as successfully as the artificial fillers?? The other reason I am asking is that I have tried HA products under the eyes and my body absorbs the HA within three weeks. So this makes me wonder if the artificial thicker fillers like Perlane might be absorbed quickly as well? I am trying to avoid lumpiness from fat transfer. Thanks.


Doctor Answers 4

Infection and HA fillers

HA fillers really has transformed facial aesthetics.  They are easy to use, give nice results, and have little downtime.  It is rare to get an infection from them.  I am surprised by your experinece, because in general they last 6-12 months and sometimes longer.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Possibility of infection or resorption with HA vs. fat

There is not a high rate of infection with HA fillers.  The key is that if you are resorbing the product at a rapid rate then you would be a much better candidate for fat transfer.  Fat is permanent although it may take some minor tweaking to get the optimal result.

Kenneth L. Stein, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
3.4 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Rate of infection no different.

I'm unaware of any study or even anecdotal descriptions of increased rate of infection for Marionette lines with HA fillers. It is true that some patients absorb the hyaluronic acid at a higher rate than others, so its quite possible that Perlane would be absorbed just as quickly.

A.J. Amadi, MD
Seattle Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Fillers vs. fat transfer

Fat transfer can be used in just about any area in the face that fillers can be used in.  The upside is that it can last for many many years.  The downside is that it can be unpredictable and may require multiple attempts to get it just right.  Fillers are very predictable and can usually be done well with one treatment.  The downside is that they only last for 6-10 months depending on the type of filler.  I know of no studies that prove an increased infection rate of fillers used in the marionette lines.

Elan B. Singer, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

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.