Nerve Damage Caused by Juverderm Voluma Dermal Filler. Richmond, GB

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I am a 34 year old woman, working in the media...

I am a 34 year old woman, working in the media industry in London. As a reward for losing over 2 stone in weight, I decided to get .5 Juvederm Voluma in each cheek only, as I felt I lost a lot of weight from my face, which I thought made me look older. The doctor used a cannula, so only one incision on each cheek. My main goal was to see how it looked for my wedding in 2016. It has been the biggest regret of my life. A top Harley street nerve specialist diagnosed me with facial neuralgia (nerve damage) and I can't begin to explain the pain I feel on a constant daily basis. I pushed back my wedding until 2017 as I physically and emotionally cannot organise a wedding right now. I wasn't naive in getting this procedure done, I researched for a year and got recommendations of a former ENT surgeon who was very experienced in facial aesthetics. I knew someone who went to her and her face looked so natural and the clinic was reputable. The procedure did not go according to plan, the doctor really struggled on my left cheek to get the product in and she got frustrated and pushed through. I knew instantly I was in trouble. My cheek stayed red and inflammed for about 4-5 weeks and then the pain started to kick in. I now have physical scaring such as broken veins and redness on my once clear skin. It was the scariest time of my life. I had intense burning, stabbing, stinging and tingling from my cheek to my eye bag right up to my eye brow. The pain was so bad around my eye I thought I might lose my sight as I did not now what was happening to me. I had visions of a huge abscess forming under my skin and I thought I might lose my cheek. The anxiety and panic attacks were horrendous. My doctor was useless and actually told me I had somatization disorder (it's all in my head) and referred me to a psychologist.

My GP said it looked like nerve damage & said it was typical of someone in the aesthetics industry to blame my pain on a psychological problem. I went to eye surgeon to examine my eye who by chance was also an aesthetics doctor with 20 years experience and she said she could help me. I cried with relief. She said my eyesight was fine and that I needed to get rid of the product with hyalase as it was probably sitting on a nerve. I was nervous as I read good and bad reviews about hyaluronidase so I got a patch test first in my face and it was fine. I got the filler removed but it did not help the pain and I spent £600. When I told the eye doctor it did not help and my face still gets intense pain and still gets red all she said was it must be rosacea in an email and said "all the best".

I am now on Gabapentin 3 times a day since September but it only recently started to work. I still have constant pain but it is not as debilitating.
My advice if you want to get this done:
- Only go to a board certified dermatologist with years of injecting experience. (They are more expensive for a reason and you can't put a price on your health)
- If you are saving up money to get this procedure done then I strongly suggest you do not follow through. I have spent over £1000 trying to get medical help as private health care does not cover issues arising from cosmetic procedures and the NHS takes too long. I was on the waiting list to see a nerve specialist for months.
- Ask about there after care service if something does go wrong.
- Really think about the impact a wrong procedure can have on your life. The pain has affected my work and my relationships with my partner, friends, family and I stay in bed when I can. Luckily I don't have children that rely on me.
- DO NOT DO ANY INJECTABLES less that 6 months before a big event such as your wedding. It could ruin your special day if the procedure goes badly.
- If the procedure goes wrong the injecting doctor won't be the one that helps you. They don't want a law suit. I have seen the medical professionals that see the horror stories. Eyesight loss, nose cartilage loss, cheek absences and nerve damage. It's not as uncommon as we are led to believe.
- Silence is the cosmetics industry biggest weapon. No one wants to shout about the damage suffered by a procedure done by choice out of personal vanity.

I will never touch an injectable again. I learned the hard way. I have been to over 20 medical appointments and I am seeing a psychologist to help me cope with the pain and the intense guilt that I feel having chosen to do this procedure. I have never felt so alone.

End of year update.

I wish this post was letting everyone know that things are improving and I am feeling much better but instead I am in debilating pain. My eye feels like it will fall out of my head, it's like lots of tiny needles being pricked into the back of my eyeball, all day, everyday. There is no break, no downtime, no medication to take the edge off, nothing. I haven been like this for weeks now, I was hoping it would die down for Christmas but no such luck. As I write this I am in bed, while all my family are downstairs laughing and enjoying the Christmas spirit. Meanwhile, I am in despair, thinking how I can face 2016 with this pain and how can I get the strength to carry on. I still can't believe I have nerve damage from a procedure where nerve damage wasnt listed as a side effect on the consent form, Allergan even told me nerve damage isn't listed side effect on there literature. It will be 7 months of pain on 9th January, it's a long time. I just hope and pray I recover 100%. I will never trust a doctor again. To anyone experiencing this type of pain, my thoughts are with you this Christmas. It's so difficult to stay positive but we must try. Merry Christmas X

Pain Management Specialist

I went to see a Pain Management Specialist this week. He agrees with my Neurologist that I have Post Traumatic Trigeminal Neuropathy. I asked him what my chances of recovery are and he said he really can't give me an answer. He said only time will tell if it's permanent or not. He is changing my medication from Gabapentin to Pregabalin which has more scary side effects. So afraid what these types of medications are doing to my body but I am desperate for some pain relief. I have no choice, I deal with constant daily pain. He warned me that these might not work either. I just want to scream from the top of my voice "what has this doctor done to my face?!!!" My heart and spirit are broken :( If I had one wish in the whole world it would be to turn back time. I used to donate blood on a regular basis as I have a universal blood type but I don't think I could ever face a needle coming near me again. I have lost all faith in the medical profession, especially with how I was treated. I can only dream of being pain free again, as reality is the complete opposite right now.

Over 8 months post procedure pictures.

I'm still suffering from redness and swelling caused by the nerve damage :( I have begun a new medication called Pregabalin and I think it's made a slight improvement. Still constant pain but not making me feel suicidal with pain, which is good!!!! Fingers crossed this is a small sign of healing and not just the new medication.

9 mths post procedure

I spoke too soon! ???? I have been in constant agonising pain since Feb 28th. I can't sleep with the pain, I can't eat & I can't think! I spend most my day crying in the toilets at work in pain, nothing I take works, nothing! I feel like my eye is going to explode with the pain, my cheek is all red, swollen and hot from the autonomic changes caused by this nerve damage. The Pregablin isn't working at all. I am going to see my Pain Mgt Specialist tomorrow, I hope and pray he has a solution. Please don't anyone get this procedure done, you could end up in agony like me.

10 months post procedure

In terrible pain, all day everyday, for the past few weeks now, I have been in bed all day this Good Friday. (So much for a happy Easter!) My cheek and eyelid have been swollen for the past few weeks (you can see from my pic I can't open my eye fully) and my cheek is red and hot. I went to see my pain management specialist and the first thing he said when he saw me was "holy s**t look at your face!!" ... which was comforting! Lol! People in work are asking me what has happened to my face, it's so hard as no one knows what has happened to me. Only my boss knows I have nerve damage, however she does not know how I got it! I am too ashamed to tell anyone the truth. :(
I emailed my doctor asking for an apology for all the pain and suffering I am enduring from this treatment and for telling me my pain was pychological but she has chosen to ignore me. It's disgraceful and upsetting.

I can barely touch the left side of my face without causing intense pain. I can't even wear my sunglasses as they trigger pain! I still can't go to the gym or exercise, which makes me so depressed, I used to go 3 times a week! I can't lie on my left side. Takes me ages to wash my face, not to mention applying makeup takes me forever as I have to be so careful. The medication I am on makes me so tired and jumpy but I have no option but to keep trying Pregabalin.

The one thing I am proud of is that I haven't taken sick time off work, if it's bad I can work from home and when in work I just leave my desk and just cry in the toilets with pain, it's all I can do but I am trying to stay strong and not lose my job because of this! (My company is going through redundancies so too afraid to take sick time). I feel under so much pressure and stress, it's been 10 months now and I feel like this nightmare is no where near the end! I constantly ask the question "Why me?" but doesn't everyone when things don't go as planned!! I am still trying to remain positive that I will recover and I will get my old face back! I continue to see my therapist who helps me manage the pain and I continue to write here as it helps me and if it stops one person from getting this (evil) procedure done then I feel I would have achieved something! Hope is all I have now that someday I will be pan free x

Diagnosed with permanent nerve damage

Well, that's it for me, nearly 12 months since the injury and I found out my quality of life is forever ruined. I saw a facial pain expert and he diagnosed me with permanent nerve damage a few days ago and he informed me that absolutely nothing can be done to reverse the damage. Surgical and non-surgical procedures are too risky and carry a high risk of making my pain even more unbearable. This means that every time I even blink, it will cause me pain on the left side of my face, every minute of every day, for the rest of my life. The strong medication I am on helps with the severe pain but not all the time and it does not get rid of the constant pain. I explained to the doctor that I wanted to start a family after my wedding next year and he just shook his head and said it would be very challenging as I can't get pregnant on the pain medication and I may not be able to cope off it. This injury could rob me of becoming a mother. I feel like someone has died and my heart is truly broken. I have no more tears left to cry :(
Name not provided

Doctor is a fully accredited aesthetics doctor and is a fully qualified ENT surgeon with years of experience.

1 out of 5 stars Overall rating
1 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
1 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
1 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
1 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
1 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
1 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
1 out of 5 stars Payment process
1 out of 5 stars Wait times
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