Following best practice and based on information provided by the New Zealand Society of Cosmetic Medicine, current guidelines suggest that you should not have dermal fillers two weeks before, or three weeks after your Covid vaccine or booster.
Here is our recommendation:
There is currently no evidence that the Covid vaccination has any effect on any other cosmetic procedures.
Some background and facts:
The media hype started as it was reported that in a trial of almost 15,184 patients with the Moderna Vaccine, 3 patients reported facial swelling a few days after the vaccine and they had had prior facial fillers (<0,02%). In all 3 cases, the swelling resolved with some oral antihistamine or steroid tablets with no further issues.
This prompted a bit of frenzy but what’s been reported in the media about the facial swelling after Covid vaccine isn’t a new phenomenon at all! The aesthetics industry was expecting the potential for this type of reaction. We’ve always known that when the body fights any infection, fillers may very rarely feel swollen and tender. This is short-lived swelling is known as a Delayed Inflammatory Reaction (DIR), which can occur weeks, months or even years after placement of the filler, when the immune system is challenged.
Other potential triggers include:
A vaccination mimics an infection to create immunity and hence can trigger the same response. It is important to note that it’s not the filler causing the problem but rather a result of the body responding to the vaccine and not the vaccine “infecting” the filler.
A recent global survey has shown that the currently available Covid-19 vaccines DO NOT have any greater a risk of a soft tissue reaction than the other triggers in the list above.
In most cases the swelling subsides spontaneously as you recover and no further treatment is needed. However extremely rarely does it require antihistamines, steroids, antibiotics or having the filler broken down.
1. UK ACE Group guidelines on SARS-CoV2: https://uk.acegroup.online/wp-content/uploads/sites/9/2021/03/ACE-Group-Guidelines-SARS-CoV-2.pdf
2. Gotkin, R.H et al (April 2021). Global Recommendations on COVID-19 Vaccines and Soft Tissue Filler Reactions: J Drugs Dermatol, 20(4): doi:10.36849/JDD.2021.6041
3. American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Guidance Regarding SARS-CoV-2 mRNA Vaccine Side Effects in Dermal Filler Patients: www.asds.net/Portals/0/PDF/secure/ASDS-SARS-CoV-2-Vaccine-Guidance.pdf.
4. Facial Plastic Surgery & Aesthetic Surgery :Coronavirus Vaccine Considerations for the Aesthetic Patient Mar 2021 doi.org/10.1089/fpsam.2020.0638
Danica Marie Morunga
Editor @ Face Doctors