Is There an over the Counter Med I Can Take to Help Reduce Swelling After Filler Injections?

I had a combo of Radiesse for my jawline and mouth corners and restalyne for my lip lines. It's been almost 24 hours and I have been icing the area. But is there an over the counter med I can take to reduce the swelling? I read something about Zyrtec and Benedryl. Is that helpful?

Doctor Answers 16

Reduce Swelling

I encourage my patients to use ice compresses and sometimes an oral antihistamine like Benadryl for the first day or two.

Fullerton Dermatologic Surgeon
3.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Restylane absorbs water

After 24 hours I wouldn’t be concerned with swelling.  Restylane absorbs water.  That means you’re going to have swelling just from the product working.  True tissue swelling can be improved with Benadryl and Zyrtec, as they tend to dry it up.  For more significant swelling, we recommend putting patients on an oral steroid (which is not over the counter).  In your situation, within 48 hours, I would try Benadryl.

Joseph A. Eviatar, MD, FACS
New York Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 64 reviews

Swelling after fillers

First and foremost, icing is the most important thing to do to decrease swelling after a dermal filler has been injected. However, many of my patients have had success with using both Arnica and Bromelain after the procedure.

Ryan Greene, MD, PhD
Fort Lauderdale Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Swelling Post Filler Injection

Swelling will normally resolve over time on its own. No medication can significantly speed up the process. Some people will recommend homeopathic remedies such as arnica montana and/or bromelain which may or may not be helpful. Applying cold packs and head elevation may help as well. Definitely be careful when applying cold packs and do not apply them directly on the skin to avoid frost bite.

OTC remedies for swelling after Radiesse

Nothing works better than ice for the swelling after Radiesse.

At our pracitce, we do not recommend any other products or remedies. The swelling is temporary and products for swelling do not work well.

The swelling is based on the location of the area injected and injection technique. Also, Radiesse has hyaluronic acid which takes up water in the skin and contributes to the swelling.

Harry Goldin, MD
Skokie Dermatologist

Fillers may cause some swelling that might be reduced by Arnica montana

Benadryl and Zyrtec are antihistamines and not diuretics (or waterpills). Unless you have swelling produced by an allergic reaction related to the release of histamine, then antihistamines are not expected to reduce your swelling.  Minimize activity including avoiding bending over at the waist, straining, lifting heavy objects, do ice compresses and consider taking the herb, Arnica montana, which has been shown to reduce the possibility of swelling and bruising.  Some recommend bromelain as well.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

We use bromelain for swelling

Bromelain is a pineapple extract, benign, and does well for swelling as long as you take it on an empty stomach.  On a full stomach bromelain helps digestion.  Ice and bromelain are your best bets.

Mark B. Constantian, MD, FACS
Nashua Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Help for swelling 24 after fillers

I agree that things that don't cause bleeding like bromelain, arnica, Tylenol and icing are all the best and most reasonable within the first 24 hours because that is the time period you are most likely to have a bleeding side effect. However, you are past that and still having swelling. Ibuprofen could be a very helpful over the counter medication to reduce swelling for you. I only say this in your case because your body has had over 24 hours time for all the bleeding areas to clot. However, if you are allergic to ibuprofen, have stomach ulcers or know you are an easy bleeder, call your doctor for some prednisone.

Daniel J. Ladd Jr., DO
Austin Dermatologist

Swelling after Radiesse and Restylane injections

We have our patients use Arnica 12 C after all filler injections including Radiesse, Perlane, Restylane, Juvederm and Sculptra.  It's a homeopathic medication that seems to help decrease bruising and swelling after fillers and surgical procedures.

Francis R. Palmer, III, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

OTC Medications to Reduce Swelling And Bruising After Filler Injections

There are studies suggesting that Bromelain may be helpful to prevent bruising and swelling when taken AFTER an injection procedure. I recommend to my patients that they take Bromelain 500 mg twice daily for three days after facial fillers have been injected. There are no studies, to my knowledge, that Arnica Montana has any beneficial effect what so ever so I do not recommend taking it. Oral antihistamines such as Benadryl and Zyrtec will not help much with the swelling and may make you drowsy. I have never had to use prednisone in any of my patients. The swelling is self limited and the side effects of prednisone are not worth the risk!

Mitchell Schwartz, MD
South Burlington Dermatologic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.