Can I ask my doctor to inject saline in my face to simulate Restylane/Juvederm or is this useless?

I'd like to get restylane in my tear troughs and juvederm in my temple/cheek area and perhaps lip augmentation as well. Can I ask my doctor to inject a very temporary substance, like saline, to see what the results will look like? or will the results from fillers differ to the salline-simulated result? is there any benefit/use/merit in doing this? I already know that I need more volume, but I'm afraid of a bad result (lumps/bumps/puffiness/ blue bruising etc). Thank you.

Doctor Answers 12

Saline instead of Filler

Your question is a great one.  In the movie "The First Wive's Club" the actress was actually injected with saline instead of filler into her lips to make them unusually large for the movie.  However, in other areas, such as the temples, and under eyes I would not suggest it.  If you consult a board certified physician with expertise in facial fillers, they will choose the right volume, filler, and have the right technique to make your injections a great experience.

New York Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 76 reviews

Possible but not standard

while injection of saline or other products might simulate the volume restoration achievable with fillers, this is certainly not the norm. saline would not have the 'lift' capacity of a typical injectable filler, and might give misleading results. it would also potentially expose you to the possibility of bruises and post-treatment swelling. hyaluronic acid fillers are 'reversible' if the results are not what you were looking for, but hopefully you will have a long discussion about your expectations with your doctor and happily i think most people are pleased with their results.

Katherine A. Lane, MD
South Burlington Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Saline injections to simulate fillers

Certainly this is an option however I'd recommend instead seeing a doctor with extensive experience injecting filler into the face.  It is not only the amount of product but the filler that is chosen and the level in which is is injected that contributes to the final result.  See and experienced oculoplastic, facial plastic or plastic surgeon or a dermatologist who does comprehensive facial rejuvenation and they can explain in detail where they will inject, why and what it will do so that you don't have to undergo a "test" procedure. We perform these procedures all day, every day and can show you faces similar to your own that have had the different fillers so that you can rest assured.  Also, if the doctor uses and HA based filler, it is reversable with Vitrase if you are unsatisfied for any reason.

Joseph A. Eviatar, MD, FACS
New York Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 66 reviews

Saline or Dilute Anesthetic Injections Can Help Simulate The Effects Of Fillers & Volumizers

For many years I have been routinely using either dilute saline or more often dilute injections of local anesthetics to simulate the effects of fillers and volumizers for use in the nose, temples, cheeks, and jawline. Since the consistency of the actual materials differs from that of the injected saline or local anesthetic, it typically takes somewhat more of the saline or anesthetic to recreate the actual effect of the injectable. Nevertheless, this is one of the best ways in the real world to give a decent impression of what the actual effects of treatment would look like. 

Nelson Lee Novick, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Filler simulation with saline

You can do this, but it's not exactly the same as injecting an HA filler which has a much different consistency than saline. Also, injecting saline gives you another round of injections, which potentially could mean more bruises and even swelling after. HA fillers can be dissolved if you don't like them and both Restylane and Juvederm are HA fillers. Your call to go through with a simulation of saline first, but I just see it adding more potential for issues than really helping you. There are Apps for Restylane and Juvederm that could give you ideas much better - and with no injections!

"This answer has been solicited without seeing this patient and cannot be held as true medical advice, but only opinion. Seek in-person treatment with a trained medical professional for appropriate care."

F. Victor Rueckl, MD
Las Vegas Dermatologist
4.6 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Saline injection to mimic filler

I think it would be best to approach it conservatively with small amounts of filler. Perhaps start with one syringe in the areas of greatest concern and reevaluate at 2 weeks. The juvederm and restylane are dissolvable if you really did not like it. I have never had to dissolve the filler for a patient when we have used this approach. 

Jennifer Parker Porter, MD, FACS
Bethesda Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Saline as temporary filler

Yes, I suppose you can do this. I have done it for one or two patients in the past. This was for lip augmentation before they committed to the filler product.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Injecting saline to predict results of fillers

This is a very good question. You can always inject a test amount of saline to give you a rough idea of what your filler results would look like. The saline is reabsorbed rather quickly, yet it doesn't give you completely accurate results of what your filler injections would look like. I would advise against this because saline injections still involve using a needle along with its associated risks of bleeding, bruising, scar tissue formation, etc. If you choose an experienced injector and view their before and after photos then you will get an idea of how skilled the injector is and how natural your results will look. Worse comes to worse, if you do not like your results with Juvederm or Restylane you can have it reversed with Hyaluronidase. Hope this helps answer your question!

Michael A. Zadeh, MD, FACS
Sherman Oaks General Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Saline injection to mimick filler results

You are a smart cookie. This is exactly what I do for my patients when I am not sure whether to use a filler in a certain area or not. Saline is safe and goes away in a day. 
Dr. J

Tanveer Janjua, MD
Bedminster Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 107 reviews

Juvederm Injections

I would advise you to seek out plastic surgeon who frequently does injections. Also, you should check with your friends and see if any of them can give you a word of mouth referral. The risks that you are concerned about should be minimal with someone familiar with performing injections. 

I think that there is little to no benefit to injecting saline. There is still the pain of the injection and the risk of bruising. Furthermore, the results are a rough approximation at best since saline is so different from Juvederm.
I would explain to your physician that you want a gradual improvement with a natural look. You can have this done and return in a few weeks if you would like more.

Sanjiv Kayastha, MD
Albany Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 68 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.