Microcannulas: Safer Alternative to Needles

Microcannulas: Safer Alternative to Needles


One of the most popular minimally invasive cosmetic treatments performed today is the injection of dermal fillers.  Dermal fillers are truly amazing in their versatility.  They can be used to fill-in superficial lines and make them less visible or volumize areas of the face that have become sunken over the years.  These subtle improvements can take years off your face and give you a more youthful appearance.


How are fillers injected?

Until recently, fillers were injected only with needles into the different layers of the skin, either superficial or deep, depending on the type of filler.  The problem with needles are that they are sharp and can puncture blood vessels, leading to bruising.  This temporary bruising, swelling and needle marks can last from 1-2 weeks depending on the patient and the area being treated.  People were willing to accept these common side effects in order to look younger.


Can injected fillers cause life threatening side effects?

The worst event that can happen with needles occurs if the filler is accidentally injected into an artery.  This leads to occlusion of the artery (vascular occlusion) which leads to lack of blood flow to the tissues.  If tissues cannot get blood, they will die.  This death, or necrosis, of tissues results in scarring.  Or worse yet, if it gets into arteries that supply the brain and eyes, people have gone blind or suffered strokes and died.


Are there safer alternatively to needles?

Recently, microcannulas entered the scene and offer a safer alternative to needles.  These are long needle shaped devices with blunt tips, instead of the sharp tips that needles have.  These flexible microcannulas can easily move through the skin without puncturing blood vessels and cause less trauma.  They enter the skin through a pilot hole created by a needle.  This ultimately leads to less bruising, bleeding, swelling, and pain.  Because microcannulas are long, they can reach larger areas with only one puncture, unlike needles which require multiple injection points and cause trauma to the skin.  With less trauma to the tissue, there is faster recovery times.  Most importantly, because they are not sharp, there is less chance of entering a blood vessel and causing vascular occlusion.


SoftFil Precision Microcannulas are a great alternative to needles.  They come in a variety of gauges and sizes.  They are also pretreated to increase glide through the tissue.


Why do they still use needles?

There are some areas which benefit from needle injection because you need a superficial placement of the fillers for fine lines around the mouth or a tiny area that needs to be injected like the cupid’s bow.  Careful aspiration after needle placement will help determine if a vessel was pierced and make injections safer.  There are advantages and disadvantage to both needles and microcannulas.  Fillers are an art, so personal preference and abilities of the injector come into play.



Since fillers are being so widely used and demand has exponentially increased since the pandemic, there is a greater need to improve the delivery and lessen the side effects.  With the advent of microcannulas to help place the fillers in a safer, easier way, the fountain of youth is now achievable with less pain, bruising and bleeding.




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