Different forms of hyaluronic acid are used for cosmetic purposes. Hyaluronic acid might also affect the way the body responds to injury and help to decrease swelling.
Hyaluronic acid injections are US FDA-approved for several conditions, including cataracts, osteoarthritis, and as an injectable gel filler (Juvedérm) for facial wrinkles. People also commonly take hyaluronic acid by mouth and apply it to the skin for UTIs, acid reflux, dry eyes, wound healing, aging skin, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support most of these other uses.
How does it work ?
Uses & Effectiveness
Likely Effective for
- Cataracts. Injecting hyaluronic acid into the eye is effective when used during cataract surgery by an eye surgeon.
- Swelling (inflammation) and sores inside the mouth (oral mucositis). Applying an FDA-approved hyaluronic acid gel is effective for treating mouth sores. It's not clear if other products help.
Possibly Effective for
- Aging skin. Injecting a specific hyaluronic acid medical device (Juvéderm Ultra Plus, Allergan) into facial wrinkles can reduce wrinkles for up to one year. It's not clear if taking hyaluronic acid by mouth or applying it to the skin helps. Hyaluronic acid injections can only be given by a healthcare provider.
- Dry eye. Using eye drops containing hyaluronic acid seems to help relieve dry eye symptoms.
- Osteoarthritis. Injecting hyaluronic acid into the joint can reduce joint pain and stiffness. It's approved by the US FDA as a medical device for this purpose. It's not clear if taking hyaluronic acid by mouth helps. Injectable products can only be given by a healthcare provider.
When applied to the skin: Hyaluronic acid is likely safe when used appropriately. Allergic reactions might occur but are rare.
Special Precautions and Warnings
Breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if hyaluronic acid is safe to use when breast-feeding. It's not clear if it's excreted in breast milk and what effect that might have on an infant. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
Hardening of skin and connective tissue (scleroderma): Applying hyaluronic acid to the skin might make skin ulcers worse in people who have a condition called scleroderma. If you have scleroderma, don't use hyaluronic acid on your skin.
We currently have no information for HYALURONIC ACID Interactions.
Hyaluronic acid is also available in many different types of topical products, including creams, gels, mouthwashes, and eye drops. In supplements, there isn't enough reliable information to know what an appropriate dose of hyaluronic acid might be. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult a healthcare professional before using.
CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.
This copyrighted material is provided by Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Consumer Version. Information from this source is evidence-based and objective, and without commercial influence. For professional medical information on natural medicines, see Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Professional Version. © Therapeutic Research Faculty 2018.