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Managing Hematomas After Bumping Voluma Filler in Your Cheek

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Got a Bump on Your Cheek Filler? Don't Panic! Here's How to Handle the Hematoma

While a hematoma – a larger, more intense bruise – can be alarming, a deeper understanding of these occurrences eases worry and helps you manage them effectively. 

You've just left the clinic, thrilled with the refreshed appearance your dermal fillers like Voluma have provided. Suddenly, you accidentally bump the treated area, and a wave of anxiety washes over you. Days later, a disconcerting bruise blossoms on your skin. 

Dermal fillers offer incredible aesthetic benefits, from restoring volume to sculpting facial contours. However, sometimes, minor mishaps or simply natural healing processes can lead to unexpected side effects like a hematoma

Is this normal? Could it affect the outcome of your fillers?

What is a Bruise and What Causes it After Cheek Filler?

A Woman Getting Cheek Filler Treatment

A bruise, also known medically as a contusion or hematoma, occurs when blood vessels are damaged and leak blood into the surrounding tissues.

With cheek filler injections, the needle piercing the skin can disrupt tiny blood vessels under the surface. Blood then leaks into the tissue, causing the discoloration we see.

Bruising is more common after cheek filler compared to other areas because the cheeks have an extensive network of blood vessels. The filler needle is more likely to encounter and damage these vessels.

Is Bruising After Cheek Filler Normal?

Yes, minor bruising is very common after cheek filler injections.

In fact, studies show bruising occurs in 19% to 68% of patients who receive facial fillers. This wide range demonstrates how common yet variable bruising is as a side effect.

Bruising, along with mild swelling, tenderness, and redness, is considered a normal part of the injection process. It's simply the body's reaction to the trauma of the needle and should resolve on its own. 

However, more severe or longer-lasting bruising may indicate an underlying issue, like a bleeding disorder. In these cases, contact your provider.

But What Exactly Happens When You Bump Your Filled Cheek?

When you've had Juvederm Voluma fillers injected into your cheek and accidentally bump it, your body's response can sometimes lead to a hematoma. This is essentially a collection of blood outside of blood vessels, caused by the trauma to the treated area. It's your body's way of reacting to the unexpected impact.

Why Did I Get a Hematoma After Bumping My Cheek Filler?

Dermal Fillers add volume under your skin but also make the area slightly more susceptible to impacts. When your cheek gets bumped, the pressure can cause blood vessels to break, leading to a hematoma. It's not the filler itself but the physical impact that's the main culprit.

Are Certain Facial Areas More Susceptible to Hematomas After Fillers?

Yes, certain areas of your face have a slightly higher tendency to develop hematomas after filler injections. Let's focus on the two most common culprits:

  • Highly Vascular Regions – Especially Your Cheeks: Your cheeks, along with the under-eye area, have a rich network of blood vessels close to the surface. This makes them generally more prone to bruising, even from minor disturbances. The same principle applies when receiving filler injections in these areas.
  • Areas with Less Support:  When filler is placed in areas that lack firm structural support from surrounding tissues, there's more potential space for blood to collect if a blood vessel is injured. This can sometimes lead to a more noticeable hematoma, and the cheek area can be affected by this as well.

While hematomas can occur in various areas, your cheeks deserve extra caution. Choosing an experienced injector, minimizing blood thinners before your procedure when possible, and following aftercare instructions diligently help lower your risk.

Why Do Some People Bruise More Than Others After Cheek Filler?

Several factors can make someone more prone to bruising after cheek filler injections:

  • Medications - Blood thinners like aspirin and anticoagulants increase bleeding risk.
  • Age - Older patients tend to bruise more easily as skin becomes thinner and more fragile.
  • Genetics - Some people are simply more prone to bruising.
  • Injection technique - The provider's skill and methods impact bruising risk.
  • Filler type - Thicker fillers like Juvederm Voluma may cause more bruising.
  • Health conditions - Bleeding disorders, vitamin deficiencies, etc. can increase bruising.

So if you do tend to bruise more easily, don't worry - your provider can tailor your treatment to minimize this.

How Long Does Bruising Last After Cheek Filler Injections?

The duration of bruising depends on its extent, but it generally resolves within 7-14 days after cheek filler injections.

However, bruising often fades significantly within the first few days after treatment.

Here's a general timeline:

  • Day 1-2 - Bruising is darkest as blood initially leaks into tissues.
  • Day 3-5 - Discoloration lightens as blood is reabsorbed.
  • Day 7 - Bruising fades significantly but may still be visible.
  • Day 10-14 - Most bruising fully resolves but some faint remnants may remain.

While bruising takes time to fully resolve, it should appear less noticeable with each passing day as your body heals.

Does Bruising After Cheek Filler Affect Results?

The good news is that minor bruising does not impact the final look from your cheek filler.

The discoloration is simply trapped blood under the skin that will fade over time. The filler itself remains effectively placed within your tissue.

As the bruising resolves, it will reveal your smooth, volumized cheek results. No retreatment or adjustments are needed for mild bruising.

However, more severe bruising that turns into a firm, swollen hematoma could impact results by distorting tissues. Your provider may recommend massaging the area to break this down. In some cases, hyaluronidase injections to dissolve the filler may be required. But this is very rare with appropriate aftercare.

How Can I Prevent Bruising After Cheek Filler Injections?

While some bruising is common, here are some tips to minimize it:

  • Avoid blood thinners like NSAIDs, aspirin, and supplements that increase bleeding 1-2 weeks before treatment.
  • Use topical anesthetics like numbing cream to limit trauma from the needle.
  • Apply cold compresses before and after to constrict blood vessels. 
  • Take arnica supplements and use arnica gel to help prevent and reduce bruising.
  • Choose an expert injector who uses careful techniques to minimize vessel damage.

Proper preparation and post-treatment care greatly reduce bruising risk from cheek fillers.

What Should I Do If I Bruise After Cheek Filler Injections?

A Woman Getting Cheek Filler Treatment

First, remember that minor bruising is normal and will resolve on its own within 1-2 weeks. But you can help it along:

  • Use cold compresses on the area to constrict blood vessels and minimize further bleeding.
  • Gently massage the area to help break up the trapped blood over time.
  • Apply topical arnica to speed up your body's absorption of the bruise.
  • Avoid blood thinners like NSAIDs as they may worsen bleeding.
  • Take over-the-counter pain relievers like acetaminophen to reduce discomfort.
  • Wait 24 hours before applying makeup over bruised areas.
  • Use color-correcting makeup like yellow concealer to hide bruising if needed.

Severe or worsening bruises may require medical treatment, so contact your provider promptly about significant issues.

When to See a Doctor for Bruising After Cheek Filler

Contact your provider right away if you experience:

  • Excessive bruising extending far beyond the injection site
  • Bruising that worsens or becomes more painful over 24-48 hours
  • Bruises that do not start fading within 4-5 days
  • Firm, swollen hematomas that cause obvious facial asymmetry
  • Signs of infection like warmth, redness, fever, or pus
  • Vision changes, excessive pain, or loss of facial sensation

These signs could indicate a more serious issue requiring prompt medical care. Don't hesitate to call your provider with any concerns.

Takeaways: What to Know About Bruising After Cheek Fillers

Minor bruising and swelling are common side effects after cheek filler injections. While the discoloration may seem alarming, it's a normal part of the procedure for most patients.

With appropriate aftercare and time, cheek filler bruises generally resolve within 1-2 weeks without affecting your results. More severe bruising or hematomas may require additional treatment but are uncommon.

Knowing what to expect can help ease concerns about bruising after cheek filler. But don't hesitate to contact your provider with any persistent issues. With an experienced injector, you can enjoy beautiful, natural-looking cheek enhancement.

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