What Are the Symptoms of Artefill Allergy?

I had an Artefill test injection. What will allergic reactions look like? I have been looking on the internet and can't find any photos showing what allergic reactions to Artefill will look like.

Doctor Answers 2

The skin test does not have the PMMA microspheres in it.

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Just to clarify, the Artefill skin test syringe contains everything in the normal Artefill syringe except the PMMA microspheres, of course. After all, one wouldn't want a permanently augmented forearm! :-)

The reaction we're testing for is an allergic reaction to the bovine (cow) collagen in which the microspheres are suspended. Although exceedingly rare with the partially denatured collagen in Artefill, allergic reactions to the cow collagen is possible. If you've ever seen what hives look like, the reaction would be similar to this, but just at the test site on the forearm. It would look like a swollen, itchy, raised area of skin.

Most of us would recommend having the skin test about 4 weeks before an actual Artefill injection, just to be safe, but in reality the reaction would likely occur much sooner than 4 weeks out.

All the best,


Jacksonville Facial Plastic Surgeon

Red, itchy pimple from ArteFill

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The usual allergic reaction to Artefill would be a pink to red, swollen bump similar to an inflamed pimple. It may or may not itch. It may show up after 1-3 days as an immediated reaction or it may be delayed and show up a few weeks later. It is the collagen that the plexiglass beads of artefill is suspended in that you are being tested for. There are no allergies to the beads themselves though. The beads are so tiny that you can't see them and they are permanent.

Artefill is usually injected in 2-3 sessions. If you do develop an allergy then it may last from weeks to many months. There are cortisone injections or Prednisone pills that help the reaction resolve. Rare reactions would include flu-like symptoms but you would still see the red pimple in any case.

David Hansen, MD
Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 46 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.