Side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine in people with hyaluronic acid fillers

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After Pfizer’s vaccine, Moderna’s vaccine against COVID-19 infection was approved in the USA, based on the analysis of data collected in the third phase of testing.

This phase was conducted on over 30,000 volunteers and closely monitored all adverse reactions of people who have received the vaccine.

In the group of volunteers, some patients who had previous treatments with hyaluronic acid fillers experienced facial swelling or appearance of painful lumps.

With timely and adequate therapy, these reactions disappeared within 7 days of receiving the vaccine.

Why does an allergic reaction occur?

Raising the immune response after the vaccine increases the possibility of developing an allergic reaction to hyaluronic acid.

Hyaluronic acid fillers are resorbable fillers composed of hyaluronic acid molecules and bonds that enable their cross-linking. The hyaluronic acid molecule is the same for all living beings, beetles, animals, humans. The natural molecule of hyaluronic acid lasts 3 to 7 days and it is then degraded by hyaluronidase, our enzyme. Hyaluronic acid in fillers lasts 6 months to 2 years because hyaluronic acid molecules are cross-linked with materials that are not bioidentical and which do not allow hyaluronidase to degrade it quickly.

Allergic reactions to hyaluronic acid fillers have been known since the beginning of hyaluronic acid use. These are believed to be reactions to the bonds in the hyaluronic acid molecules and not to the hyaluronic acid itself.

They are extremely rare, which is why hyaluronic acid has achieved such great success in the general population.

Allergic reactions may occur in the first 72 hours after the treatment. They are characterized by redness at the site of application, swelling, and rarely itching. They can disappear spontaneously in 7 days. It is necessary to contact the doctor who performed the treatment in order for him or her to assess whether additional therapy is needed.

Late allergic reactions occur two weeks to a month after the treatment. Sometimes it can take several months. Typically, a lump is felt at the site of application, a circular hard formation that slides under the fingers. It can be painful and can cause swelling of the entire surrounding area (cheek, eyelid…). Doctors who have been working with this material for many years are well aware that patients can have such a reaction as a result of an inflamed tooth on that side of the face, inflamed sinuses or a slightly more severe case of viremia. When the inflammation subsides, the body’s reaction to the filler disappears.

The same is believed to happen when the vaccine against COVID-19 is received. Corticosteroid and antibiotic therapy stop the body’s reaction to the filler within 24 hours of starting the therapy.

What sets hyaluronic acid apart from all other fillers is the fact that hyaluronic acid has its own solvent. Injecting the hyaluronidase stops the allergic reaction because hyaluronic acid turns into water.

According to the reports of patients who had a reaction to fillers after they received the COVID-19 vaccine, all reactions were stopped with timely therapy.

Also, the FDA (US Food and Drug Administration) revealed that in Phase 3, only three people developed an allergic reaction with swelling of the face or lips after receiving the vaccine (source, click here).

The advice of the World Health Organization is that such side effects should not be an obstacle to receiving the vaccine.

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