Dermatologist Tackles Misinformation Related to COVID-19 Vaccines and Injectable Fillers and Toxinx


Dr. Joel L. Cohen sets the record straight on vaccine safety

With a recent article in the Wall Street Journal article suggesting that patients must choose between neurotoxin treatments or COVID-19 vaccines, dermatologists are scurrying to set the record straight. While there have been rare reports of non-life-threatening, transient reactions among patients who had recently received hyaluronic acid fillers and then received the mRNA SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, there is no indication of any reaction between the vaccines and injectable botulinum toxin formulations. 

“It’s disappointing that the Wall Street Journal failed to properly distinguish between cosmetic injectable treatments. Botox and fillers, like JuveDerm and Restylane, are totally different products,” states dermatologist Joel L. Cohen, MD, of AboutSkin Dermatology in suburban Denver. “Now we as dermatologists and plastic surgeons have to work again to set the record straight. Misinformation has a huge ripple effect. And this totally inaccurate WSJ article and headline has led to anxious patient phone calls, canceled appointments, and likely even people who have recently been treated with any facial cosmetic injectable agent to delay their vaccine or booster.”

Dr. Cohen emphasizes that patients need not choose cosmetic injectables or vaccination, as they can safely receive both, according to American Society for Dermatologic Surgery. “The fact is Dysport/Botox/Xeomin/Jeuveau are Neuromodulators that work on the injected muscle to minimize contraction. Fillers are an actual product that stays placed under the skin to add or restore volume in the folds, cheeks, lips and hands. Furthermore, the issue of fillers and the rare risk of delayed swelling reactions has been reported a year ago. There is nothing new here. Any vaccine can cause the immune system to transiently rev-up, and rarely sinus infections or teeth cleaning procedures can do the same—this can cause some swelling and/or redness, which is usually for a few days, and if prominent then can be treated with over-the-counter agents (like ibuprofen or antihistamines) or even prescription medications (like prednisone or lisinopril).  I have even seen patients with no history of facial cosmetic filler treatments get swelling of their lips for several days after the vaccine or booster as well, a condition called angioedema.”

Patients should always discuss concerns with their board-certified core aesthetic physicians.

Facebook Comments


We’re glad to see you’re enjoying PracticalDermatology…
but how about a more personalized experience?

Register for free