You may have heard whispers of concern about localized swelling at the site of dermal filler treatment following the COVID vaccine. While it is true that the combination of the vaccine and dermal fillers could cause swelling, the broader truth is that it’s rare, mild, and temporary. Here’s what you need to know.
What causes localized swelling at filler treatment sites after COVID vaccine?
Vaccines work by triggering an immune response in the body. Vaccines contain weakened or inactive parts of a particular organism that are not strong enough to make us sick, but that still trigger the immune system to produce antibodies trained to recognize and fight that organism in future encounters.
When the immune system is in a heightened state following a vaccination, it may treat the dermal filler as a foreign object and trigger an inflammatory reaction at the treatment site. The resultant minor swelling doesn’t happen in everyone. In fact, it’s extremely rare—in a study of 15,000 people, only 3 had this reaction.
It’s also important to note that the inflammatory response is not exclusive to the COVID vaccine, and it is not just in relation to dermal fillers. Other vaccinations may have a similar result, and breast implants or artificial joints may also be treated as “foreign objects” by the immune system. Typically, however, once the body has adjusted to the vaccine, the swelling goes down on its own.
Swelling after COVID vaccine: prevention and treatment
Although the swelling response after the COVID vaccine is both mild and rare, it can be uncomfortable and cause self-consciousness if it does happen. So what can you do to avoid it? And how can you treat it if it does happen? The best thing you can do is to stay in touch with your doctor. Communicate your concerns and keep in touch about your plans for either fillers or the vaccine.
While there are no guarantees, many doctors recommend that patients allow at least two weeks between their dermal filler appointment and their COVID vaccine. This means to wait two weeks after your filler appointment to get the COVID vaccine or wait two weeks after your COVID vaccine to get your dermal fillers. Your doctor may also recommend a preventative medication or specific instructions to help minimize potential side effects.
In most cases, the swelling will go down on its own as soon as your body becomes accustomed to the vaccine. But for more immediate relief, your doctor may recommend local anti-inflammatory medications, antihistamines, cold compresses or other treatments aimed at minimizing swelling.
If you do experience severe swelling, please contact your doctor right away. In general, however, any minor swelling you experience near your dermal filler treatment site after the COVID vaccine will most likely be mild and go away on its own. Doctors agree that the benefits of the vaccine outweigh this potential but rare, mild, and temporary side effect. It should not stop you from getting the vaccine or the dermal filler treatments that help you feel radiant, youthful, and beautiful.
We’re committed to your health, safety, and peace of mind
At San Diego Cosmetic Laser Clinic, we offer safe and effective cosmetic services designed to help you look and feel your best. We’re committed to the health, safety, and peace of mind of our patients. If you have any questions or concerns, we’re happy to help. When you come in for a consultation with Dr. Mani, she’ll answer your questions, discuss your goals, evaluate your medical history, and work with you to create a treatment plan that addresses your concerns and helps you feel great in the skin you’re in. Give us a call at (619) 583-7555 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Mani today.