Safety with Ultrasound in Cosmetic Medicine

Dermal fillers are becoming more popular in the world of cosmetic medicine. As we age, we lose volume in our faces due to bone loss, muscle wasting and fat loss. Cosmetic dermal fillers help restore volume to the face. However, with more fillers being done, more complications occur. Although the risk of complications is rare, the complications can also be very serious. Fortunately, complications can be managed successfully, if it is diagnosed early and treated promptly.

I personally always treat on the more conservative side, and I put safety first. To increase my ability to achieve the best results possible, but also to decrease the risk of complications and create a safer experience for my patients, I decided to train under the most experienced and premier aesthetic ultrasound teachers in the world, Dr. Leonie Schelke and Dr. Peter Velthuis in Amsterdam in October 2021. The first use of ultrasound is to help me determine if a person is a candidate for a particular injection, such as a lip filler. With ultrasound, I can see if the patient has the usual anatomy of lips that allow for a safe injection of filler in the lips or if the patient is one of the 2% of patients who have atypical anatomy of lips that would increase the likelihood of an intravascular complication.

I personally always treat on the more conservative side, and I put safety first. To increase my ability to not achieve the best results possible, but also to decrease the risk of complications and create a safer experience for my patients, I decided to train under the most experienced and premier aesthetic ultrasound teachers in the world, Dr. Leonie Schelke and Dr. Peter Velthuis in Amsterdam in October 2021. The first use of ultrasound is to help me determine if a person is a candidate for a particular injection, such as a lip filler. With ultrasound, I can see if the patient has the usual anatomy of lips that allow for a safe injection of filler in the lips or if the patient is one of the 2% of patients who have atypical anatomy of lips that would increase the likelihood of an intravascular complication.

The second use of the ultrasound is to allow me to see what fillers have been used in the past. Most people do not remember what fillers were injected in them or may not even know what was placed in them. For instance, in Southeast Asia, it is common practice to mix silicone oil with fillers to make the fillers last longer. However, silicone oil is considered a more permanent filler and putting new filler in the same area is not advisable. The third use of the ultrasound is to allow me to do ultrasound guided injections to ensure the filler is placed in the correct area of the face. The fourth use of ultrasound is the allow me to be more precise in treating complications, because with the ultrasound, I can visualize the location of the fillers and be more precise in the placement of the medication that may be necessary to dissolve the filler. Using facial ultrasound in our practice improves procedure outcomes and enhances patient safety.

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