Section : Management opinions Section : Controversy

Mesotherapy: necessary risks ? (For Professionals)

  • Mesotherapy was developed in 1952 by Michel Pistor. The technique was initally targeted at vascular and lymphatic diseases treatment.
  • It consists of the injection with very fines needles of hormones, enzymes, nutrients, pharmaceutical products, homeopathic agents, detergents as well as other products in the subcutaneous fat (hypodermis) of the skin (phosphtatidylcholine injection would not be mesotherapy). In our experience, it is more often than not difficult to obtain the exact composition from the manufacturers of the substances.
  • Shrouded in mystery, this technique is often ill-received by the medical scientific community. It also caries the risk of serious reactions, thyrotoxicosis is one example.
  • To this day, few clinical trials are available and they fail to demonstrate the mechanism of action of the “active” substances, and even less true for lipolysis. It remains an enigmatic technique whose purpose would be to treat effectively:
  1. irregular contouring of the skin
  2. cellulitis
  3. Fat excess (by lipolysis)
  4. hair loss.
  • While lipolysis would be the mechanism of action, this technique has also been used in the treatment of dermatological and rheumatological conditions.
  • The new indication is to use it for skin rejuvenation:

Few peer-reviewed publications in the medical literature about mesotherapy are available. The effect on the skin would be:

  1. a reduction of wrinkles
  2. an increase in the elasticity of the skin
  3. an improvement of pigmentation

We would like to invite you to read our powerpoint presentation on the action of mesotherapy on the face to induce skin rejuvenation.

Mesotherapy for facial skin rejuvenation (in English)(based upon Amin S. et al , Dermatol Surg 2006; 32: 1467-1472):

  • no serious side effect was observed:
  1. temporary erythema
  2. punctate bleeding
  3. bearable pain
  4. urticaria, severe pain and purpura occured in around 5% of treated cases.
  • clinical evaluation does not enable to differentiate any improvement (after 1 to 6 months) of:
  1. erythema
  2. wrinkles (superficial  or deep)
  3. dyschromia
  4. telangiectasia
  • microscope evaluation of the affected areas shows no change:
  1. regarding epidermal thickness.
  2. regarding vessel diameter or density
  3. regarding solar elastosis
  4. regarding elastin content
  5. regarding dermal thickness
  6. regarding collagen fiber thickness
  7. regarding fibrosis formation

To conclude, to this day, mesotherapy has a very disputable preventive and therapeutic effect on skin ageing. However, because of the popularity of mesotherapy, we must not draw  premature conclusions. Nevertheless, more studies are needed in order to show the effectiveness of the treatment. Thanks to touted minor side-effects (some are life-threatening), the patient should undergo treatment only if fully informed of the lack of scientific literature available pertaining to its effectiveness.


  • Mesotherapy for facial skin rejuvenation: a clinical, histologic, and electron microscopic evaluation. Amin SP, Phelps RG, Goldberg DJ. Dermatol Surg. 2006 Dec;32(12):1467-72.
  • Factitious thyrotoxicosis induced by mesotherapy: a case report. Danilovic DL, Bloise W, Knobel M, Marui S. Thyroid. 2008 Jun;18(6):655-7.
  • Effectiveness of mesotherapy on body contouring. Park SH, Kim DW, Lee MA, Yoo SC, Rhee SC, Koo SH, Seol GH, Cho EY. Plast Reconstr Surg. 2008 Apr;121(4):179e-85e.
  • Histological changes associated with mesotherapy for fat dissolution. Rose PT, Morgan M. J Cosmet Laser Ther. 2005 Mar;7(1):17-9.
  • Mesotherapy and phosphatidylcholine injections: historical clarification and review. Rotunda AM, Kolodney MS. Dermatol Surg. 2006 Apr;32(4):465-80.

This advice is for informational purposes  only and does not replace therapeutic judgement done by a skin doctor.

Category : effets secondaires - Modifie le 05.13.2010Category : mésothérapie - Modifie le 05.13.2010Category : mesotherapy - Modifie le 05.13.2010Category : risks - Modifie le 05.13.2010Category : risques - Modifie le 05.13.2010Category : side effects - Modifie le 05.13.2010