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Homepage // Blog / Is Lip Filler Migration Really a Thing? Dermatologists Explain

Is Lip Filler Migration Really a Thing? Dermatologists Explain

by | Mar 11, 2024 | Dermal Fillers

Lip filler migration is a real risk of lip injections and a growing concern for those who opt for augmenting the size and shape of their lips. Perhaps you have seen the latest TikTok videos with unnatural filler results?

While lip filler is becoming increasingly popular to achieve youthful, plump lips, concerns remain about the risk of migration when performed by an inexperienced injector. At Laser & Skin Surgery Center of New York, all lip fillers are performed by board-certified dermatologists to ensure natural-looking results with minimal risk.

What is lip filler migration?

Lip filler migration occurs when the injectable medication used to plump the lips moves away from the injection site and unintentionally settles into another area of the lips or mouth. Migration is not always an immediate side effect, as it can take weeks or months to occur. Once it does, results can appear unnatural and asymmetrical. The most common type of filler used is hyaluronic acid (HA), a substance that occurs naturally in the body. With HA fillers, even though the body will eventually break down and absorb the filler, there is still a risk that it will move before it is fully dissolved.

How often does lip filler migrate?

Despite the alarming number of TikTok videos and recent buzz on social media, lip filler migration is not a common side effect, especially when performed by a board-certified dermatologist.

Although lip filler migration is uncommon, it can occur. The likelihood of migration depends significantly on outside factors such as dosage and practitioner experience. Unfortunately, there is currently no way to determine if someone is at particular risk of lip filler migration, so it is essential to research the type of injection, understand the risks, and discuss your options with a qualified injector. Those who have had lip injections in the past should also monitor their lips and report any unusual changes in shape or size to their dermatologist.

What causes lip filler migration?

Filler migration can be caused by a number of factors, including:

  • Dosage: Too much lip filler or an incorrect dosage can lead to migration, as the medication will move away from the intended location. This is why it is important to choose a qualified dermatologist who understands and has experience with lip filler injections. The dosage will depend on the individual’s desired result, and your dermatologist should be honest and straightforward about the outcome and the possible risks.
  • Filler brand: There are so many lip fillers on the market, and they do not all have the same quality. Lesser-known brands are often under-researched and tested and can result in poor outcomes, like filler migration and other unnatural results. FDA-approved brands like Restylane Kysse and Juvederm are ideal lip fillers.
  • Aftercare instructions: Patients who follow aftercare instructions typically see better and longer-lasting results compared to those who do not. Proper healing is key to a natural and beautiful appearance, and following appropriate instructions can significantly impact your recovery, potentially reducing side effects like lip filler migration.
  • Experience: Lip injections require precision accuracy for dosage and injection technique. The right placement is critical for sleek, natural results. Working with a board-certified dermatologist can help reduce the risk of improper placement and injection methods that can lead to botched lip filler.

How can you tell if you have a migrated lip filler?

Many patients strive for natural results so others will not know they had a cosmetic procedure to achieve their youthful appearance. When lip filler migration occurs, it can be noticeable.

Here’s what to look for if you are concerned about filler migration:

  • One or both lips roll outward with little definition
  • Puffiness above the upper lip that can look like duck lips
  • Stiff lips with a rubbery or stuffed appearance

What happens if you don’t treat a migrated lip filler?

Leaving filler migration untreated can lead to prolonged unwanted results and delay future treatments. While lip fillers will eventually dissolve, noticeable improvement can take months or years without professional assistance.

Hyaluronic acid lip fillers can be used to counteract lip filler migration and improve the appearance of puffiness, hardness, or unnatural lips. It is necessary to address filler migration before continuing with regular injections and potentially exacerbating the issue.

Where to treat a migrated lip filler in New York?

Laser & Skin Surgery Center of New York is a distinguished facility with state-of-the-art treatment rooms, more than 100 lasers and devices, and highly trained board-certified dermatologists. Patients can count on precise treatments and detailed sessions for unmatched injection results in New York. Contact us to schedule a consultation and learn more about our lip fillers that deliver natural results.

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