Procedures and Treatments Designed for Various Lifestyles and Budgets
According to data provided by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, thousands of surgical augmentations are performed each year. The cost for lip augmentation can span from several hundred to several thousand dollars. Therefore, given the array of treatment options, you’ll no doubt find a treatment plan that will fit with your lifestyle and budget.
Lip Augmentation by Injection
One of the quicker, lower cost options are injections. These kinds of treatments are typically performed under a local anesthetic in a doctor’s office or outpatient facility. Treatments take anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours.
Injections using collagen are one of the most popular treatments offered for lip enhancement. Collagen, which is derived from the skin of a cow, is an injectable that enlarges the lips temporarily. Patients who opt for collagen often take a sensitivity test initially as the substance has been known to cause an allergic reaction in certain individuals. An ultra-fine needle is used to inject the natural material. Because absorption is gradual, this type of lip augmentation typically lasts about one to three months before the process needs to be repeated.
Fat Injections: Used for More than Just the Lips
Fat is often used for injections and is taken from another area of the body, mainly the thighs or abdomen. Before the substance is injected, it is cleansed of any impurities. People who are allergic to collagen often choose fat injections as they have been proven to cause no undue side effects. Like collagen, fat injections are also temporary. However, they do last longer than injections using collagen.
Also referred to as fat transfers, fat injections can also be used on other areas of the face as well as to add extra fullness to other areas of the body, such as the buttocks. When used on the face, fat injections serve to fill out wrinkles and lines, increase blood flow, and give a patient a more youthful, vibrant appearance. Therefore, besides augmenting the lips, fat injections are frequently used to remove under eye bags and fill out facial areas, such as the cheeks or chin. Mouth lines fade away using fat injections as well.
Other Injections to Consider
Other innovative types of injections that can be considered for lip augmentation include the following:
- Artecoll® is a substance made up of micro beads comprised of a synthetic—polymethyl methacrylate—that, when injected, puffs up the lips. Some patients prefer this method as it lasts longer than augmenting the lips using fat or collagen.
- Collagen-type injections using autologen take the collagen found within a patient’s skin to increase the size of the lips. Generally, autologen is derived from the excess of skin that is trimmed away during brow lift surgery.
- Injections to augment the lips include dermalogen and fascia, which are derived from donor material or tissue. Fascia, which originates from connective tissue, can either be injected or implanted surgically. HylaForm®, another donor-type injection, comes from molecular tissue.
- Restylane® injections make use of a clear, hyaluronic acid type gel. Hyaluronic acid itself, also known as HA, is integral in its role in the human body as it regulates the amount of moisture in human tissue, with the largest amount found in the body’s synovial fluid and connective tissue beneath the skin. Generally, injections using Restylane® last from six to nine months.
- Juvederm® injections, which also use hyaluronic acid or HA to plump up the lips, generally last longer than injections using Restylane® and are known to keep the lips plumped up to a year.
- Radiesse® injections contain a synthetic compound, calcium hydroxylapatite, and are applied as a gel. Patients choosing this form of injection see results that last, on average, around four years.
Besides injections, the following surgical procedures are used to underscore the look of the lips:
- Synthetic implants made of such trademarked materials as SoftForm™, Gore-Tex™, and ePTFE™ provide patients with permanent enhancement. Insertions are made by making incisions on the inside of each lip and then inserting the implant material with a needle. In a small number of cases, the body can reject the implant, which may necessitate its removal.
- AlloDerm® is another material that is used for augmenting the lips surgically. Made from processed collagen that is derived from cadavers, AlloDerm® is applied under a local anesthetic by making small incisions at the corners of the mouth. Once the material is inserted, the incisions are then sutured. AlloDerm® treatments last from six months to a year.
- Local flap grafts make use of the mouths inside tissues to plump up the lips. The surgeon makes a small incision within the mouth to facilitate the process. In some cases, when treating the upper lip, an incision is made along the lip line before removing the skin above the lip.
- Fat grafting, which sometimes supports flap graft surgery, makes use of the patient’s body fat to enhance the lips. Results are permanent for about 50% of the patients who choose the surgery because the fat, in some cases, is reabsorbed by the body. After the fat is prepared for insertion, it is administered using a needle.
Recovery Time for Treatments and Procedures
If you elect to have your lips enhanced using injections, then you’ll note little, if any, discomfort as a topical anesthesia is applied during the treatment. The same is true for surgical procedures that use a local anesthetic. The recovery time for injections normally takes a couple days. However, bruising or swelling may take up to a week to subside.
For surgical procedures, recovery time usually takes up to two weeks. Patients often experience a bit of stiffness in their lips during this period.
After Care Treatment
After care treatment includes the following applications:
- Applying ice packs to the lips for 48 hours after the treatment or surgery.
- Limiting the amount of time chewing or talking during the same period.
- Refraining from laughing or smiling for about a week.
- Avoiding any strenuous exercise or activities for several days.
- Using antibiotics on the lips to reduce the risk of infection.
Talk to Dr. Slack about Lip Augmentation in Plano and McKinney, Texas
If you feel that lip augmentation may be appropriate for you, schedule a private consultation with Dr. Slack to discuss your goals and concerns. He looks forward to speaking with you.