We’re “Stuck” on a Better, Safer Way To Inject Fillers

David B. Reath, MD
Article by
Knoxville Plastic Surgeon

One of the things that I like about plastic surgery is that we are always trying to improve the things we do. I think it’s part of our culture or the way plastic surgeons are wired (no comments from the peanut gallery, please!). Usually the goal is to have a better result or make something as safe as possible. And the latest upgrade in what we are doing has to do with the way we inject fillers, like Juvederm and Radiesse.
Juvederm Injector Jill Maze

Most injections are done with needles — I know, duh. However, there are other ways to do this that can be both more comfortable and safer. The problem with needles is that they are sharp — yes, I know, duh again. While the sharp end allows them to go through the skin easily, it also allows them to puncture very small blood vessels which causes bruising and can hurt.

There have even been reports of times when the filler has actually gotten inside the blood vessel and traveled to an adjacent area causing a problem. This was actually the impetus to find a better, safer method of injecting fillers.

Enter the flexible cannula.
A flexible cannula differs from a needle in that the end is blunt and the hole through which the filler is injected is on the side of the tip, rather than right at the end. Since the cannula is blunt, it more or less pushes the tissue aside as it is advanced rather than puncturing or cutting the tissue as a needle would do. Otherwise it works just like a needle and everyone agrees it’s safer too.

But guess what: it is also a much more comfortable way to have the injections. So, in our quest to do this better, we ended up doing this with less pain, and less bruising. Not bad. And it’s something that our patients are noticing and commenting on.

So next time you are in for your fillers, Jill will probably be using her flexible blunt cannulas rather than a needle and you will find that your experience with these wonderful little fillers just got a lot better!

Hope to see you soon,

David B.