Tips for Avoiding Radiesse Pain

I am thinking about getting for my marionette lines, but after reading a , I'm not sure.  She described the Radiesse injections as being so painful that I am scared to try it.  Why do injections hurt so much for some people, but not others?  How can I avoid being one of the people who has "excruciating" pain?

Doctor Answers 17

Minimizing pain with facial fillers: Radiesse, Juvederm, Restylane; Raffy Karamanoukian

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Facial fillers are useful to correct areas of facial atrophy, including the lips, nasolabial folds, and face. Injection is usually performed using small gauge needles that are prepackaged with the sterile syringe.

Minimizing pain is an important part of your overall experience. There are many ways to minimize the pain associated with facial fillers, including the topical application of lidocaine creams, local anesthetic blocks, and local injection of anesthetic prior to injection.

The most recent development in facial filler injections has been acheived by mixing the anesthetic with fillers such as Radiesse prior to injection. This reduces the pain associated with the injection and obviates the need for local anesthetic blocks.

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 95 reviews

Radiesse is not painful for my patients

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I routinely add lidocaine to all my Radiesse injections. This significantly decreases my patient's pain. Also, by applying Pliaglis, a new topical anesthetic, there is virtually no pain. Applying ice before also helps. The lidocaine added will give short term pain relief as well, while the patient is driving home. After it wears off, the painful time period has usually lapsed.

Steven F. Weiner, MD
Panama City Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Radiesse doesn't contain anesthetic

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Radiesse does not contain anesthetic (lidocaine) in it, and patients say that it continues to hurt for a few minutes after its injected. I routinely use:

  • A potent topical anesthetic (numbing cream)
  • A nerve block before the treatment
  • Ice compresses afterwards

Fortunately, the results last for several years and my patients are thrilled.

Jonathan Hoenig, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon

How to avoid radiesse pain

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I usually inject the area with minute amounts of local anesthetic with epinephrine that will numb the area and shrink the blood vessels so that it is less likely that the Radiesse could be injected in them. Some people mix the Radiesse with a local anesthetic bot this doesn't totally eliminate the pain.

Tips for Avoiding Radiesse Pain

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There are several ways to minimize the pain of a Radiesse injection. Topical anesthetic ointment, icepacks, and local dental blocks are very helpful to the overall injection experience.

Thomas Guillot, MD
Baton Rouge Plastic Surgeon

To Avoid Radiesse Pain

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There are ways to minimize pain associated with facial fillers. Ice, topical anesthetics, lidocaine or nerve blocks can be used.  Slow injection technique as well as mixing with lidocaine works well.


Edward E. Dickerson, IV, MD
Fayetteville Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 127 reviews

Radiesse Pain

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Radiesse is firmer than most fillers, so it’s a frequent fix for deep grooves and to enhance bony contours. It is now virtually painless because it is mixed with lidocaine which numbs the areas as it is injected. Many patients even report that Radiesse injections are less painful than Botox!
But buyer beware--injection techniques can vary. It’s the art and science of what doctors do, and it’s important to choose your doctor wisely. I suggest finding a physician with plenty of experience using this product.

Michelle Copeland, MD, DMD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Radiesse injection pain

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I prefer to use nerve blocks to numb the areas to be injected or local anesthesia. After that, the patient is totally numb. Topical creams take the edge off the injections but don't significantly reduce pain below the skin surface. Some patients who are anxious about the injections take Xanax before treatment.

Minimizing Pain with Radiesse

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There are several steps to minimize pain with Radiesse:

  • Pre and post injection icing can help numb the sensation to the area
  • Proper injection technique can eliminate most of the discomfort associated with it
  • Dental blocks and topical anesthetics are not necessary in my practice for Radiesse (see point above)
  • "Tricks of the trade", in which each injector employs including various distraction techniques and others to minimize discomofort

Radiesse injection should be a relatively pain free experience.

Anil R. Shah, MD
Chicago Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 181 reviews

Injectable Filler Anesthesia to Avoid Pain

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Injectable fillers such as Radiesse, Restylane, Juvederm, and Sculptra are good options for various cosmetic enhancements for facial aging, such as nasolabial / smile lines or lip enhancement.

Some local anesthesia is generally required, since each filler is injected via a small needle. However, cosmetic treatment should not be very painful. Most dermatologists or plastic surgeons use a combination of anesthesia techniques to minimize discomfort.

  • topical anesthesia cream on treated areas
  • nerve or dental block with injection of anesthesia into skin & tissue
  • mixing anesthesia directly with the filler
  • ice pack prior to procedure
  • oral pain medication prior to procedure

There are many other techniques which may help alleviate any pain with injections.

Houtan Chaboki, MD
Washington DC Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 89 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.