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Posted on 21st February 2019

The Risk of Lip Fillers

The cosmetic beauty industry within the UK is worth a staggering amount of money. According to Statistica, the industry was worth more than £13 billion in 2018, with its numbers rising year on year. This is a testament to its popularity, especially among affluent areas. In fact, the highest 10% of earners spend more than 4 times as much on personal care products than the lowest group.

This makes the popularity of lip fillers (often called Dermal Fillers) immediately apparent. They’re a relatively low-cost treatment compared to other options, with prices ranging from £100-£1500, depending on the location and experience of the practitioner performing the treatment. Speaking of location, you can also get them in a variety of premises. Shops such as Superdrug have even launched an in-store option for customers that want treatment on the go.

But what are lip fillers? And what risks do they pose? We’ll be answering these questions in our latest advice centre article.

What Are Lip Fillers?

Lip fillers are used to increase the volume of the lips, providing definition that many people find appealing. The effects of the treatment can be permanent, but the common types of treatment use temporary materials with effects lasting from 3 months to 2 years. The following information was taken from the NHS:

  • Collagen – Effects last 3 to 4 months.
  • Hyaluronic Acid – Lasts about 4 to 6 months.
  • Calcium Hydroxylapatite – Lasts about 18 months.
  • Poly-L-Lactic Acid (PLLA) – Effects of injections given over several months may last up to 2 years.
  • Polymethylmethacrylate Beads (PMMA) – Permanent, but risky.

During the procedure, a local anaesthetic is provided, usually in the form of a numbing cream. A needle is then used to place the filler in, and then the practitioner massages the lips to evenly distribute the filler. This part is crucial, as it prevents the formation of lumps. In essence, the treatment is complete at this stage, but the lips usually swell for 24-48 hours afterwards as well.

Needle for lip fillers

The quality of the treatment ultimately depends on the skill of the practitioner, and this is where the major problem lies. In the UK, this area of cosmetic surgery is entirely unregulated, which results in medical negligence and personal injury claims, depending on where the treatment is performed.

Regulated VS Unregulated Treatments - Can You Claim?

As lip fillers are a non-surgical cosmetic treatment, the practitioners aren’t legally required to hold any qualifications. This poses a major problem, as the incorrect application of this treatment can result in scarring, bruising or even long-term problems. The level of training doesn’t matter either, and a common complaint revolves around that fact. You won’t necessarily know unless you ask directly, and even then, you may not get a truthful answer.

Regulated Treatments

You can make a medical negligence claim against a regulated practitioner, such as a plastic surgery clinic that also provides lip fillers. Our Dermal Filler page covers this in depth, but you may have a claim if the following have occurred:

  • Bleeding from injection sites.
  • Swelling that lasts longer than expected. (Up to 10 days or more.)
  • Lip asymmetry.
  • Infection.
  • An injection into a blood vessel.
  • Scarring.
  • Stiffening of the lip.
  • An allergic reaction

If problems have happened with either of these treatments, please contact the team at Negligence Claimline on 0330 355 9210. We’ll take a look at your claim and pass you to an experienced solicitor. A free assessment is also available, in which you can easily place the details of your injury to receive a callback.