So many of my patients seek to enhance their natural lips to make them fuller or replace the volume that is lost in their lips by the aging process.
Recently, there’s been a lot of “buzz” around a new supposedly quick-fix, at-home device called the Hyaluron Pen that’s supposed to do just that.
So what is the Hyaluron Pen?
It is a needle-free device that shoots Hyaluronic Acid (HA) into the lips using an extreme amount of air pressure in order to force the HA through the outer layer of skin. The marketing touts it as a device that can add volume to your lips without needles and with low risk of bruising and swelling.
Sound too good to be true? It is. And not only that, but it is actually very dangerous.
This was actually called to my attention personally, as a patient came to my office with a very significant infection from using one of these devices and it had made her entire face lopsided. The area infected was painful and will have to be treated. I had to refer her to a plastic surgeon!
Is the Hyaluron Pen Safe?
Hyaluron Pen and the variations of “needle-less injection” devices are dangerous. It is unclear why the sale of these products is allowed in the US, as they are prohibited in Canada and all European countries.
Here’s the main thing you need to know: Just because it doesn’t have a needle, does NOT mean it is safe, painless or “better” than injection by a needle.
The material is technically injected (without a needle, but through skin that has bacteria) and the product you are injecting is NOT STERILE! Though this material is a drug (injectable product), it is not under any kind of regulation or control, so you have no real way to know if the filler you are injecting into your face was produced under staintary conditions, the chemical makeup, or otherwise.
This procedure is NOT safe!
It is INCORRECT to refer to this device as “non-invasive”. It literally injects hyaluronic acid into the skin with air pressure.
Air pressure injections into the skin ARE invasive! This injection can carry bacteria into the skin. You are INJECTING MEDICATION into your body. This should ONLY be performed by a licensed individual!
Have you ever noticed that when a doctor or a nurse is going to inject you, they wipe the area with alcohol? This is to disinfect bacteria on the skin before puncturing it and is a critical component to ensuring you don’t end up infecting the injection site.
Here, at Mountain Radiance Medical Spa, we use a much stronger disinfectant mixed with alcohol and Hibiclens (chlorhexidine gluconate, a powerful but gentle antiseptic that virtually sterilizes the skin – as used by surgeons). Well, the air jet that forces the hyaluronic acid into your skin pierces it as well—and the instructions don’t even tell you to clean the skin first!
If you use this product—which, in my opinion, should NOT be sold for at-home use (or use on others, even by a licensed individual such as an RN)— you are taking your health, safety, and your appearance into your own hands.
If you should use this product and have a bad result, please don’t go to a certified, licensed medical spa and expect that they will “fix” the problem(s), rather you’re going to have to go to urgent care or a plastic surgeon.