Pain relief using local anaesthetic for dermal filler injections

Dermal filler injections are more uncomfortable for the patient than other treatments such as BOTOX® treatment.

This depends on the area treated, with the lips in particular being very uncomfortable because of their denser nerve endings in this area. Many patients are deterred from having dermal filler injections into their lips because of the discomfort of the procedure.

Traditionally, practitioners have used dental blocks blocking the infra-orbital and mental nerves in a similar fashion to that used for the dentist for dental treatment.

While this type of local anaesthetic is very effective at reducing discomfort from the lips during injections, making it almost completely pain free, it has the disadvantage that the local anaesthetic can also affect the muscle tone of the lips.
By reducing the muscle tone they decrease your patient’s ability to contract the muscle and produce the lines which you aim to treat.

At Cosmetic Courses we always advise our trainees to first of all mark the lines they wish to treat prior to inserting the dental blocks so that the landmarks are retained.

Although the marking technique does give indication as to the areas that require volume adjustment, due to a decreased subcutaneous tissue it is not as accurate as seeing the areas for yourself with the muscles contracted which is often not possible with dental blocks.

Whilst EMLA and other topical anaesthetics such as Ametop offer some pain relief this is not complete and, even if these are used, dermal fillers are uncomfortable.

With Juvederm®, the Allergan company introduced a product with local anaesthetic combined with the hyaluronic acid.
This has significant advantages in that, although the first injection is of normal tenderness, the local anaesthetic does permeate through the area and each subsequent injection becomes less painful.

We have found that, if dermal fillers which contain lignocaine are used correctly, the discomfort from dermal filler injections (even in the lips) is significantly reduced and is very tolerable for most of our patients.

Our current preference is to use a dermal filler containing local anaesthetics in the peri-oral area as this has the dual advantage of producing good pain relief for the patient and also preserving the muscle activity allowing you to accurately place the dermal fillers in the correct position.

If you would like to know more about these techniques with dermal fillers to reduce the discomfort for your patients please contact the Cosmetic Courses office on 08452 304 110 or via email at [email protected] to discuss your training needs.