Are Cosmetic Injectables Safe?

injectables safe
 
Cosmetic Injectables fall into two categories - neurotoxin injections (Botox),  and Dermal filler injections.  Both give beautiful results - however they are composed of very different ingredients and injected with different techniques. 
 
Neurotoxin  Injections (Botox, Dysport, Xeomin, Jeuveau)
Neurotoxin treatment involves the injection of a very small amount of a neurotoxin into a specific muscle.  The result is relaxation of the muscle and improvement of lines or wrinkles that the muscle action has formed over time.
 
Typically, the muscle action will return in 3-5 months - requiring another treatment to relax the muscle and soften the lines again.
 
This is a very safe procedure, as the injection point is very close to the skin in areas where no major blood vessels are present. 
 
Possible side effects include:
  • Bruising at the injection site
  • Transient headache
  • Temporary Unevenness of the brows
  • Temporary drooping of the eyelids or eyebrows
 
It is recommended that the following individuals should not receive Neurotoxin injections:
  • Individuals with an allergy to Neurotoxin
  • Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Individuals with underlying neurological conditions such as myasthenia gravis and Lou Gehrig’s Disease
  • Individuals who have heavy eyelids or foreheads or drooping eyelids (use with caution).
Dermal Filler injections
Dermal fillers are soft, gel-like substances that are injected under the skin to lift the cheeks, plump thin lips, fill deep creases near the nose and mouth, lift the lower face and jawline, and fill in the space under our eyes.   Fillers are made of a substance called hyaluronic acid - which is found naturally in our body and plays a major role in keeping the skin hydrated and voluminized. 
 
They last much longer - up to 2 years in some cases, depending on the location and type of filler. 
 
More caution and skill are needed when injecting dermal fillers,  as they are injected deeper into the face in areas where there are blood vessels present. 
 
Possible side effects include:
  • Bruising (slightly more extensive than Neurotoxin)
  • Worsening of herpes if cold sores are present during injection
  • Infection
  • Vascular occlusion - a very rare but serious complication.  Vascular occlusion can occur if filler is inadvertently injected into an artery and causes a blockage.   Blood supply to that area is then compromised.  This needs to be treated immediately with an injectable medication to dissolve the filler, heat applied to the area, aspirin prescribed, as well as close follow up for several days after the procedure.  It is important for injectors to have a protocol to follow and an occlusion kit at their fingertips to treat this complication if it should arise. However the best treatment for vascular occlusion is prevention.  Thorough knowledge of the anatomy of the face, use of blunt tipped cannula vs needle, and excellent injection technique is vital for safe injections. 
 
It is recommended that the following individuals should not receive filler injections:
  • Individuals who have a history of allergic reactions to HA fillers
  • Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Individuals who have received an immunization within 2 weeks of the procedure
  • Individuals who have had dental work performed within 2 weeks of the injection
  • Individuals with active cold sores