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Nov 12, 2019
The popularity of using dermal fillers as a replacement for plastic surgery has risen dramatically in recent years. While generally priced moderately per unit when purchased from a physician, some people nonetheless seek out less expensive options. With patient demand at an all time high, discounts and cheaper versions of the more popular dermal filler brands are widespread. So how do you know if the fillers you are buying are authentic? Read on to find out.
Get to Know your Dermal Fillers
To avoid being fooled by black market or counterfeit dermal fillers, learn about the ingredients of the authentic products. To avoid breaking the law, counterfeit products often leave out information regarding the true products they are imitating. Some will purposely misspell information or omit certain ingredients to avoid making false claims. For this reason, it helps to know what is really in dermal fillers before shopping for them. Some of the more popular brands are listed below.
- Juvederm and Restylane: Both products contain hyaluronic acid (HA) that is cross-linked with butanediol diglycidyl ether (BDDE) and may contain lidocaine at various consistencies, depending on the version.
- Radiesse: This product uses calcium hydroxylapatite, which is a type of mineral that is found in human bones.
- Sculptra: The primary ingredient is poly-L-lactic acid, which is a synthetic filler.
- Aquamid: The primary ingredient is polyalkamide. This is a semi-permanent filler.
- Bellafill: This product’s main ingredient is polymethyl-methacrylate microspheres (PMMA).
- Botox: Primarily made of botulinum toxin type A, human albumin and sodium chloride.
While these are the active ingredients found in dermal fillers, some may contain other ingredients. It is best to research a product’s complete ingredients, as this little bit of research will help you avoid buying counterfeit fillers and also help you recognize a false listing that is designed to trick you into purchasing an “almost authentic” product.
Dangers of Buying Fake Dermal Fillers
Purchasing counterfeit dermal fillers does more than just waste your money – it can put your patients’ health in danger, which is why it’s important to know the risks. The dangers of purchasing fake injectables include the following:
- Health: When you purchase a fake filler, you cannot be certain what it contains – and what you’re injecting into your patients! Serious and even fatal health problems can arise from this. Fake products are completely unregulated, which means that there could be anything inside. Injecting a patient with a fake dermal filler runs the risk of allergic reaction, injection site reactions, sepsis and more.
- Financial: Purchasing a product that does not work and cannot be used on patients will have a negative impact on your clinic’s finances.
- Disfigurement: Even if the formulation of the product you purchase is similar to that of the original injectable, it can cause disfigurement in the area it is injected into.
- Inefficacious: While some false products are safe to inject, they simply do not work.
Tips on Avoiding False Fillers
- Check manufacturer directories for certified resellers.
- Pricing should be similar to the cost of buying directly from the manufacturer.
- Product identification should be easily visible, and there should be tracking codes on the packaging.
- Check that the seller offers legitimate contact information.
- Compare the seller’s product with other discounts from certified sources.
- Be on the lookout for scam alerts and social media complaints.
- Check user and/or buyer reviews of the company selling the product.
- Do your research on the product itself before buying.
Buying a false filler can be fatal. To be sure you are purchasing authentic fillers, take your time to find the right deal from a certified seller.