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    New hypodermic needle design aims to take pain out of cosmetic injections

    Mountlake Terrace, Wash. — A new hypodermic needle design may revolutionize injection techniques spanning all fields of medicine, resulting in reduced pain upon injection and more efficient outcomes, according to the inventor of the design.

    The Aesthetic Needle (Painless Needle) is the brainchild of Keith K. Ly, D.O., who designed and patented the needle to offer his patients a less painful cosmetic surgery experience. The product also increases technique efficiency and efficacy when injecting botulinum toxin, fillers and local anesthesia, he says.

    Keith K. Ly, D.O.

    “Patients will typically associate needles with pain. Though the popularity of nonsurgical cosmetic procedures such as botulinum toxin and fillers is booming, many would-be patients may be hesitant to undergo a given cosmetic procedure because of their fear of pain and/or their needle phobia. This may be one of the limiting factors in increasing patient turnover in the cosmetic practice,” says Dr. Ly, director of PureLySkin Aesthetic and Medical LLC, Mountlake Terrace, Wash.

    A twist in convention
    Unlike the conventional single-orifice needle, the Aesthetic Needle is a perforated intradermal injection needle with four or eight lateral perforations that allow fluid to disperse over a larger localized surface area. This aims to decrease injection pressure and reduce distension pain felt by the patient upon injection, Dr. Ly says.

    The patented lateral holes allow for minimal fanning, serial droplets and threading techniques with less injecting, Dr. Ly says. The eight-hole needle is for regional and more diffuse injection with larger volume, and the four-hole needle is for more localized and specified injection with smaller volume, he explains.

    “When injecting a fluid with a regular needle, the distension pressure will increase and be concentrated at the tip of the needle. Using the Aesthetic Needle, the pressure of the fluid dissipates through the lateral holes along the needle lumen, reducing local-site distension. Moreover, physicians will require less in/out injection techniques, resulting in less tissue damage, less trauma and less bruising,” Dr. Ly says.

    Compared to conventional needles, the 28-gauge Aesthetic needle has a thinner-walled lumen with a 20 percent larger internal lumen. According to Dr. Ly, the needle is competitive to Radiesse’s (calcium hydroxylapatite, Merz) 28-gauge special needle with larger internal lumen and can be used for botulinum toxin, fillers and all intradermal and subdermal aesthetic injections.

    In addition to achieving a more even dispersion of injected fluid throughout the targeted area of injection, Dr. Ly says physicians can perform injections faster with the Aesthetic Needle.

    “The Aesthetic Needle is currently the smallest-gauge needle with the largest lumen, offering a more effective and less painful delivery of injected materials,” he says. “The needle can be particularly useful when injecting fillers with higher visco-elastic properties, as it can significantly lessen the pressure applied to the plunger during injection, facilitating treatment and resulting in more exact placement of material via the lateral perforated holes versus with single hole conventional needle.”

    Diffusion of product is sometimes desired when injecting botulinum toxin, such as in the treatment of hyperhidrosis, the injection of larger muscles and field block anesthesia, he adds.

    “Relieving the pressure at the tip of the needle is key in reducing the pain of injection. In this vein, the design of the Aesthetic Needle could also be very useful as a tumescent liposuction infusion needle to penetrate fibrotic tissues. In contrast to a blunt canunla, the needle could disperse tumescent fluid easier, faster and more evenly with less pressure and pain to the patient,” Dr. Ly says.

    Beyond cosmetic surgery
    Dr. Ly says the Aesthetic Needle might also find a place in other areas of medicine, facilitating faster routine blood collection with less hemolysis; painless childhood immunizations; painless diabetic insulin injections; painless administration of antibiotics using a smaller gauge; and more.

    Taking the design of the Aesthetic Needle a step further, Dr. Ly is in the process of developing 18-gauge 5-inch and 20-gauge 3.5-inch tumescent infusion needles, as well as 18-gauge and 23-gauge ¾-inch needles for blood collection and short-term IV administration. The Aesthetic Needle is currently under approval by the Food and Drug Administration.

    “I believe that this concept and needle design can change the very way we perform injections with needles, which can have far-reaching implications for both physicians and their patients. The intent was to change the way we use hypodermic needles in terms of a less painful and more effective injection method, and I believe that the Aesthetic Needle has accomplished that,” Dr. Ly says.

    Disclosures: Dr. Ly is the inventor of the Aesthetic Needle and owner of Painless Needle.