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How can I avoid a bruise? (For in office procedures like botox and filler)

Posted: May 17, 2011 > botox > pre op / pre procedure advice > Skin / Nonsurgical > skin fillers > Uncategorized > Blog Home

“No downtime!” 

Nonsurgical procedures are common.  The whole beauty (pun intended) of nonsurgical procedures is there is “no downtime”  and they are secret.  No one knows why “you look refreshed” “relaxed” “young for your age.” But if you get a bruise… uh oh.  There goes the whole anonymity of it all.  There is no downtime, but you need to go to work, drop kids off at school, go to the grocery store.  If you get a bruise…. How many times are people going to believe you bonked your head on the car door (silly me!) or your kid threw a toy which accidentally gave you a bruise (oh no!) on your cheek?

I had a patient whom I did filler on last week who said, “OH MY GOSH!”  as she had the epiphany a woman whom she knows very well who says she was doing “nothing” has for a while been doing fillers.  The culprit? How did my patient figure it out?  Aha!

A bruise.

So.  There is no sure fire way to avoid bruising.  When I take a sharp object (ie a needle) and poke it through your skin (sorry, I know it is graphic), you can bruise.  The face is very vascular (ie has a lot of blood vessels), and certain areas have higher tendencies to bruise than others.  Should we give up? Throw in the towel? No. 

There are things you can do to help.

I wrote on this a while ago.  See original blog:

Two weeks ahead of time:

  • Avoid medications which cause bleeding.  See my blogs: aspirin NSAID products, herbal products, and any vitamins or pills in general which are “heart healthy.”
  • Some people tend to bruise more.  In general, if you know you are a bruiser, expect you will bruise.
  • If you are doing Sculptra, which involves injections over a more broad area, expect some area may bruise.
  • The cheek/eye junction and the mouth like the bruise the most.
  • Don’t schedule it right before a big event like a wedding, reunion, etc.  Murphy’s law will reign supreme, and we will hit something.

Two days ahead

  • Start herbals which decrease bruise and swelling: arnica and bromelain

The day of

  • Exercise if you are going to waaay ahead of injection time. (Yes, you Palo Alto girls.  Walk the dish early in the morning or wait until a day out.) You don’t want to be hot, sweaty and have your blood vessels be dilated when you come in.
  • Ice on the way driving into the office


  • Elevate
  • Ice
  • No bending over, straining, lifting heavy objects (like kids)
  • Crank the AC in the car.  Being hot= blood vessels dilated= easier to bruise.
  • Do the anti bruising and swelling herbals
  • No exercise (this includes anything which raises your blood pressure or makes you hot and sweaty. Yes, this includes things which I cannot discuss here.)
  • Sleep with your head elevated

If you have any sign of bruise, do not work out until the bruise is gone.  Once you bruise, it will take a week til it is fully gone.  For most women it is not bad, particularly if you have darker skin.

And pray to the anti-bruising angels. There is always a little luck involved.

Please keep in mind: subjects covered in this blog and certain tips and advice are not substitutes for professional medical advice. This blog is for general informational purposes only. If you are considering plastic surgery, reconstructive surgery, or cosmetic enhancement, you should always consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon and/or your general practitioner in-person for professional medical advice.

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment.

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