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Lip Dissolving Treatment - When Things Go Wrong

10 Aug 2021

All procedures, whether that be surgical or cosmetic are not without their risks. Lip dissolving treatment is not exempt from this. At First Personal Injury, we believe that you should be made aware of all possible side effects you may experience after the treatment. Alongside this, we want to make you aware of what types of issues we can help you make a compensation claim on.

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What is lip dissolving treatment?

Lip dissolving treatment is the removal of collagen or hyaluronic acid (HA) from a patient's lips that would have been injected through a lip filler procedure to enhance the size of the lips. The procedure involves the injection of an enzyme from the enzyme family of Hyaluronidases. Your body naturally produces this enzyme and it becomes the catalyst to breaking down the HA and collagen within the lips.

A natural breakdown of the filler will take between 6-24 months to fully restore your lips back to a natural look. Lip dissolving treatment can shorten this time to as little as two weeks, hence why people requiring a quick fix opt for this procedure.

Potential effects of lip dissolving

As with most things, lip dissolving does come with some potential side effects:


As to be expected, an injection to one of the most sensitive parts of the body will most likely hurt...a fair amount. With so many nerve endings being held within your lips, no wonder some people who have had their lips dissolved have described the pain as "eye-watering" and some comparing it to "being stung by a wasp". This is with the numbing cream that will be applied to the lips prior to the injection.

However, judging by the fact you're considering this treatment, you have most likely already had an injection from your original lip filler procedure. Therefore, you will know what the pain is like, and it is up to you whether you deem it manageable for a second time!

Redness, swelling, and bruising

Similarly with the last point, with you most likely already having had your lip filler procedure, you will know about this. However, if you didn't experience it last time, you may do this time around. Up to 48 hours after the lip dissolving treatment, you may experience redness and swelling around the mouth, and this is seen to be completely normal after such a procedure. You may also suffer some bruising around the lips which will most likely clear up several days after the treatment.

When lip dissolving goes wrong

With the previous two points, these are seen as pretty standard effects that the injection can cause. However, with these next two points, they are a little more serious and can occur when the treatment goes wrong:

Allergic reactions

Whilst the enzyme used is naturally produced by the body, an extra injection of Hyaluronidases can cause an allergic reaction. The overexposure of Hyaluronidases can cause a reaction causing lips to appear thinner than they were before your lip filler injection. This occurs because the allergic reaction will cause the hyaluronic acid to break down not only from the filler but the natural acid within your lips.

However, if you have ever been stung by a wasp or a bee and have not shown an allergic reaction, then you will most likely have no allergy to Hyaluronidases. If you've been lucky enough to never be stung, the surgeon will perform a patch test on your skin first to preview how your skin reacts to an increased level of the enzyme.

Vascular complications

This is probably the most serious potential outcome of the procedure. There is potential for the enzyme to not only dissolve the filler but also dissolve the tissue around the lips. This can cause blood vessels to become squashed, depriving the tissue of blood. Ultimately, if this goes unnoticed this can cause Necrosis and can leave you with nasty scarring around the mouth.

Making a lip dissolving claim

Whilst all of the above are side-effects that are more than likely out of anyone's control, there are a number of things that can go wrong with the procedure that can leave you with the right to make a claim:

  • Surgeon not performing a patch test of the enzyme and consequently having an allergic reaction
  • Dissolving of soft tissue around the lips going unnoticed causing scarring
  • The needles being used are unsterilized causing infection
  • The practise itself being unhygienic
  • The appearance of lumps around the lips after the lip dissolving procedure

If you want more information, please check our pages on both Botox claims and Derma filler claims.