After just a few years on the market as a noninvasive option to reduce a major body concern, the makers of the cellulite treatment Qwo say they’re ceasing production and sale of the injectable. In a press release, Endo Aesthetics say concerns about “the extent and variability of bruising” associated with the procedure as well as the potential for long-term skin discoloration is behind the decision to pull it off the market.
The company participated in a study this summer to test ways to decrease the amount of bruising, and while there were some modest reductions achieved, it wasn’t enough to alleviate the concern. “After careful consideration, we have determined that Qwo does not represent a viable commercial opportunity for Endo,” said CEO and President Blaise Coleman.
Injection site bruising has been a common concern amongst patients and doctors. Upon hearing the news, many physicians say the decision makes sense. “It’s not surprising given the side effect profile,” noted Spokane, WA dermatologist Wm. Philip Werschler, MD.
Some physicians have attempted to find ways to mitigate this response, but overall it’s been a major turn off says West Palm Beach, FL Kenneth Beer, MD. “We don’t use Qwo at the present time,” he says. “We participated in the clinical trials and there was just too much bruising.”
“This news is both surprising and not surprising,” adds Fort Lauderdale, FL dermatologist Dr. Matthew Elias. “It’s surprising in that it was a treatment that was very effective, easy to administer, safe and cost effective. It’s not surprising in that Endo recently had to file for bankruptcy protection from the opioid epidemic and while Qwo worked really well, it often times left extensive bruising and post inflammatory pigment alteration that was difficult to resolve.”
Despite the noted issues, Qwo may remain a cellulite treatment option at doctor’s offices across the country for the time being. “It remains an FDA-approved product with clinically-proven results and an established safety profile, so practices may continue to use unexpired Qwo that they have in stock, as well as order additional supply,” Endo stated in the press release.