What are the Side Effects of Restylane?

As you consider Restylane® dermal fillers to help smooth out and improve the contours of your face, you’re likely wondering about the most common side effects to expect and prepare for after your procedure. Whenever dermal fillers are injected into the skin, there is always a risk of side effects, and in most cases, side effects from Restylane® will be mild, tolerable and lasting just a short time. In some cases, mild side effects disappear in just a day or two, and in some cases, they might last up to two to four weeks.

The most common side effects that might be experienced after Restylane® treatment include:

  • Bruising
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Pain/Soreness
  • Tenderness
  • Itching
  • Hyperpigmentation
  • Injection site scabbing
  • Infection
  • Hardness/Nodule

The way side effects reports work is via surveys that ask patients if they experienced any of the following, with a long list provided. If a patient felt itchy a few days after treatment, he or she might have written down ‘itchiness’ on the survey, which survey conductors take seriously and include on the list. And as you know, different people have different tolerance levels for discomfort. What one person describes as tenderness, another might call searing, white-hot pain. So side effects lists can help you create realistic expectations that you may experience some bruising, swelling or other effects that are quite expected when you’re having skin injections, and another benefit of side effects lists is that you have an idea of which effects are normal…which can flag any unusual side effects like throbbing or tingling that you’d call your doctor about.

It is a reality that infection can occur with injections of any kind (even a flu shot,) so follow your doctor’s orders about keeping your injection sites clean and knowing what to look for as signs of infection. And your doctor will also disclose the rare, more dramatic side effects that have been reported during studies of Restylane® such as allergic reaction and anaphylactic shock so that you’re informed and can make decisions about your treatments.

The location of your Restylane® injections may play a part in the types of side effects you experience and how long they last. For instance, Restylane® side effects like redness, pain, bruising, or tenderness, typically mild in severity, normally last less than 7 days in nasolabial folds and less than 14 days in lips. Age is also a factor. Swelling may be a more likely side effect in patients under 36 years, and bruising may be more likely in patients over 35 years.

It may also be a factor if this is not your first time getting Restylane®. In one U.S. study of Restylane® side effects for lip augmentation, over 80 percent of subjects reported side effects at the time of their first injection, and over 60 percent of subjects reported adverse events after the second injection at 6 months. Over 95% of study participants reported at least one event of short-term swelling, redness, tenderness or pain, with 85 to 99 percent of these being ranked as mild in intensity, and resolving in 15 days or less.

Studies of Restylane® patients find that more severe reactions are rare, occurring in only 1 of 2000 patients on average, and these more serious side effects to be mindful of include allergic reactions, anaphylactic shock, and other serious conditions that while rare, could occur and thus need to be discussed in-depth with your physician. You’ll need to know what counts as a normal side effect, and which sensations or conditions signal the need to seek immediate medical attention.

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