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11 Things I Wish I Knew Before Radiesse

  • 3 years ago

In our Radiesse community many people look back on their experiences and say, "I wish I had known..." some information prior to undergoing treatment. Here are 11 tips from RealSelf community members that you may find helpful. Feel free to add your own in the comments! --Sharon

1) Am I a Good Candidate for Radiesse?

Understand what kind of skin you have before you consider fillers, because the thickness of your skin is the decider of what fillers you should use. I have thick skin, so a heavy filler like Radiesse was a plus. If I had thinner skin, I would probably stay with something softer like Juvederm for the nasolabial lines. -DrewNY

My problem was lack of volume in my cheeks, and the first plastic surgeon I consulted with wanted to do implants! I wasn't ready for surgery, and so I went forward with the Radiesse. -shellseeker25

2) Choosing a Provider

I want to address the people who are thinking about injectables in general. I'm stunned that people here have not done any homework and worse, they go to a "spa" or have a nurse or regular M.D. do the work. I researched injectables for almost a year before having anything done. I checked every website, read all the precautions and then went about finding the best plastic surgeon I could find to do the work. I checked the recommendations at the sites of the producers of Radiesse and Juvederm for referrals, I checked the "Best Plastic Surgeons of NY" book, and even checked up on my plastic surgeon's reputation in the community. After 10 months of research I was ready to go with it. I'm glad I did the research, because it made for a success that even surpassed my own goals. -DrewNY

Please be careful with this product and the physician that administers it! I used a Radiesse "Premier Physician." I thought I had done my research by selecting a doctor they recommended. I found out later, from the Radiesse rep, that a Premier Physician rating is given to the doctors who buys the most product. -Mia

I was told by a friend to come to a Radiesse party where a rep from the company would be there. Well, little did I know the rep only gave verbal instructions and I was another "guinea pig." Afterwards, one side of my face looks irregular and my right lip is swollen. Everyone asks me questions and it is so embarrassing. People, watch out for anyone who is only in training. Do your homework and only go to an RN or someone under a very reputable plastic surgeon. -Jill Tulepe

3) Which Areas Can Be Treated With Radiesse?

I had my cheeks injected with Radiesse and I am totally happy with the results. It looks very natural and not at all overdone. Since Radiesse is a thicker filler she advised using this product over Restylane or Juvederm for the cheek area. -Mamascho

It is very heavy material, and it has a harder consistency. It's good for frequent-use lines (like around the mouth) but every reputable plastic surgeon will tell you never to use it around the eyes, because it is too heavy and will sink. -DrewNY

I am having problems with Radiesse causing hard lumps under my eyes. They are migrating down my cheeks. It's been three months since the injections and I still have swelling and redness, along with shooting, stabbing pain. I contacted the company that produces Radiesse and was told that it isn't FDA approved for use in the eye area and that they tell doctors not to use it there. -PLS

4) What to Expect from Radiesse Treatment

The treatment itself lasted about 90 minutes and was much more painful than I anticipated. I experienced significant bruising and swelling which lasted 7-10 days. -ms6945

I would suggest that you request a mirror and ask that your injector take frequent breaks to let you check the progress; not so much as to be a total interruption, but to make sure it goes smoothly. This is going to last you a while! If you've got a good injector they won't mind taking time for you. -bb7880

5) Pain, Bruising & Swelling

The Radiesse treatment was relatively painless. My doc mixed in a small amount of lidocaine before injecting and applied some topical to the surface of my skin. After injecting using a "retrograde fanning" technique, she applied a small vibrating massager to further smooth out the product. I actually thought it was relaxing, but I know I have a higher than normal tolerance for pain as well. -bb7880

When I first got it (after being numbed) I sort of freaked. My face swelled and my muscles were not moving so I looked like the Joker and I was like, "I can't believe I did this!" After an hour at home, my face came back and the swelling went down. I did get bruising but I even worked out that night and no one noticed. -Cinlight

There was no bruising, very minimal swelling -- I went out to dinner with friends six hours after I had it done -- and no problems with the Radiesse itself. -DrewNY

6) Downtime

This stuff goes right to the bone so be sure you give yourself enough down time if you are embarrassed about bruising. I'm ten days out and it is still visible on the upper cheekbones. No big deal for me as I work out of the home, but if you have something big coming up, give yourself a good two weeks to get it healed. -dbcc

it did take five good days before I looked normal enough to return to work. I think this idea that you can return to work the next day is misleading -- you'd have to work in the back of a cave! If you meet the public, count on a longer recovery time. Give yourself a good week if you have an event. -shellseeker25

7) Recovery Tips

I stopped all vitamins, etc. two weeks before I had my injections. I also took Arnica Montana for two days before and three days after. I had no bruising at all. What we think are harmless supplements can actually thin the blood, which causes bruising. -agingboomer

I did bruise, but I didn't research what I should (not) be taking before the injection, such as Vitamin E and ibuprofen. Next time -- and there will be a next time, believe me -- I'll research the bruising element. -shellseeker25

8) Radiesse Side Effects

I'm glad other people on this site have had good experiences. I really wish I could be commenting the same. I developed a granuloma under my right eye after using Radiesse, which now requires surgery. This isn't for cosmetic reasons (though it is very unappealing); it's medically required. The granuloma is adding pressure to my orbital rim, pressing against my lower eyelid, and increasing in size not decreasing. -Mia

I had Radiesse about four months ago around the nose and mouth, and they also put a bit under my eyes as well. Ever since I have had this horrible reddish, bruised-looking area under my eyes that just won't go away. The dermatologist has tried twice to laser it but it hasn't made a bit of difference. The volume looks good, but the discoloration is awful! -Deborah F.

One friend said when she had Radiesse injected in her face. She had a bit of an issue with itching for the first month or so along the injection sites. For me, nothing worth mentioning but the slight bruise. -S. Lyon MI

I had a systemic reaction after having Radiesse injected and it was immediate (burning tongue, tingling in hands). My doctor put me on prednisone, which helped calm it down. I think I still have an autoimmune problem that hasn't been diagnosed. I would not recommend doing fillers if you have any autoimmune issues. These things really aren't studied enough. FDA approval means nothing. Your immune system will react on some level to any foreign substance put in the body. -774463anon

9) Dissolving Radiesse

There is NO easy way to dissolve the Radiesse. This is the one major problem with this filler as opposed to Restylane. Restylane can be expressed out or can be injected with a solution that breaks it down. You unfortunately have to wait until the Radiesse goes away or have them cut out the implant. -JulieKATZ

10) Final Results

You have to wait at least two weeks before really knowing how it will look in the end. Usually, if your face is really puffy, you really need to wait. In fact, many complain (it happened to me) that Radiesse didn't fill as much as they wanted. Be patient. Cheeks really make you look younger after they settle. -nieves

Almost 13 months later, my results still look great. When comparing my current picture with my pre-injection picture, I have maintained a lot of my fullness to my cheek area. I have a minor deficit under each eye and I am thinking about going back to get a touch-up to that area. Overall, I was very pleased with the results and every time I see a picture of myself, I see the fullness of youth and not the sagging of age. -fillerupb

I went conservative on this product, not knowing how much dissipates over time. I have since read that 70% of this filler is the delivery system. In other words, a lot of it is going to disappear. Bummer. I still see some improvement but not like it was right after the initial use. -dbcc

I can't stress enough that the hands that wield the needle will determine what kind of results you get. Sure, a small amount of it is your body, but people who inject too shallow with Radiesse, for example, are placing it in too vascular an area and of course it won't last as long. -bb7880

Radiesse is alleged to encourage collagen production. Doesn't look like it to me! Call me naive, but I also hoped my lines wouldn't look as bad as before. -40 something

11) Was It Worth It?

I received Radiesse to fade my frown lines and I was told it would last a year. But after four months, my lines are coming back! I paid a lot of money for a year's worth of nothing! -kitty32

Mine was gone in eight months. Imagine if I had gotten GREAT results and then it disappeared in eight months. Either way it was $1,200 thrown out the window and a whole lot of stress! -notahappyface

In retrospect, it lasted for around six months. I really had expectations of it lasting over a year. Was it worth it? I haven't done it again and no one has said I look better or worse. It was worth it for the moment but not for the long run. -pamrose

I think it was a reasonable expense for the result. I would definitely do it again and would recommend Radiesse to others. -mannonj

Comments (2)

I would like to make an observation after reading the "11 things...before Radiesse" download from RealSelf. I am from Canada. Here, plastic surgeons rarely inject and certainly all those with whom I have spoken in the course of my writing are opposed to injectables. (One has a highly skilled nurse-injector in for one day a week, which finances his OR for one day a month, so he approves only in a financial sense.) There may be a few surgeons in other areas of Canada who inject.

This said, one of the remarks made by a US member, about only seeing a competent cosmetic/plastic surgeon and not a nurse or a "regular MD" would not apply north of the border. Some nurse-injectors are highly skilled, such as mine. Some MDs are also highly skilled in cosmetic work and have given up their regular practices, taken auxiliary courses, etc. to upgrade their skills. Many teach cosmetic surgeons the basics. (Different country, Eh? Lol!)
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Thanks for putting this together Sharon :)

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