Treatment for Mycobacterium abscessus Infection Associated with Fat Grafting

Surg Infect (Larchmt). 2020 Sep;21(7):639-644. doi: 10.1089/sur.2019.270. Epub 2020 Jan 9.


Background: Fat grafting is a standard method for soft augmentation. However, occasionally Mycobacterium abscessus infection can be seen secondary to fat grafting. The aim of this study was to report experience with and propose standard treatment. Patients and Methods: From 2006 to 2018, 12 women who had received fat grafting for facial soft augmentation in different Chinese private clinics were reviewed. Results: The patients presented with local swelling and skin ulceration. They patients received primary infusion of antibiotic agents; however, the results were poor. After being admitted to our hospital, cultures were taken and sent to the specialized examination center. Mycobacterium abscessus was diagnosed in all of the patients. According to drug sensitivity results, targeted antibiotic agent treatment was implemented for 12 months. Local proper conservative debridement was conducted as needed. When the patients were discharged from the hospital, they were advised to continual oral medication for six months. After three to nine years of follow-up, no recurrence was found. On the basis of this, a corresponding standard treatment was proposed. Conclusions: Mycobacterium abscessus infection after fat grafting should be diagnosed and treated accurately. Our experience and proposed treatment may be beneficial.

Keywords: Mycobacterium abscessus; fat grafting.

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue / physiology*
  • Adult
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / administration & dosage
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Cosmetic Techniques / adverse effects*
  • Debridement
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Mycobacterium Infections, Nontuberculous / drug therapy*
  • Mycobacterium Infections, Nontuberculous / etiology*
  • Mycobacterium Infections, Nontuberculous / therapy


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents