In recent years, full lips have become an increasingly attractive feature, perhaps due in part to celebrities like Angelina Jolie, Scarlett Johansson, Megan Fox and others. Unfortunately, not all of us are born with luscious lips. For those seeking fuller, plumper, more attractive-looking lips, lip augmentation can help.
Lip augmentation is an elective cosmetic surgery procedure used to improve the shape and fullness of the lips. A variety of injectable dermal fillers can be used to temporarily plump the lips. Fat injections, which are more permanent, are an option as well.
Why Have A Lip Augmentation?
Voluptuous, full lips have long been a sign of captivating beauty. Full lips are often associated with youth and confidence, while thin lips are often considered a mark of aging. Men and women who would like to regain fullness in their lips can benefit from lip augmentation.
For decades, doctors and scientists have been searching for ways to fill and enhance lips. Today, we have many techniques at hand to perform this procedure with great success. With today’s technology, we are able to successfully give patients the look they desire through the use of synthetic fillers or a patient’s own body fat.
Lip Augmentation Procedure
If you have been considering lip augmentation, a consultation with Dr. Walton to discuss the procedure is the first step of the process. He will need to know what you want to change and how dramatic of a change you are looking for. Each person has a different idea about what look will be best for them. Some people want a very natural look that is not a dramatic and obvious change. Others want full, luscious lips for a dramatic new appearance.
Dr. Walton will inform you about the different procedures he offers and what will help you to achieve your desired look. The actual treatment only takes about 15 minutes in the office as it is an outpatient procedure.
At Plastic Surgery Chicago, we prefer Juvederm Ultra XC as the synthetic filler of choice for our patients because it can be injected into the lips in the office with immediate results. It only requires local anesthesia and is tolerated well by most patients.
Juvederm Ultra XC is an FDA-approved dermal filler comprised of a clear gel formulation of hyaluronic acid. It can be used to plump the lips and smooth wrinkles around the lips. During the procedure, the Juvederm Ultra XC filler is placed along the contours of the lips. After it is injected, Dr. Walton will massage the area to prevent lumps from forming and to create the most aesthetic contour.
Fat transfer can also be used for lip augmentation. Fat can be taken from nearly any site on the body. It is harvested with a special instrument, processed, and then loaded into small syringes for injection into the lip. Fat transfer is advantageous for patients in that they are universally tolerated and cause no unfavorable reactions, and they can provide permanent results after as few as 2-3 injections. The disadvantage of using fat injections is that the retention rate of the fat is unpredictable.
Are You A Candidate?
Good candidates for lip augmentation need to be in good general health. You are not a good candidate for lip augmentation if you have:
- Cold sores
- Certain diseases such as diabetes or lupus
- Any scarring on your lips
- Problems with blood clotting
- Severe allergies
Lip augmentation is a personal decision, and only you can determine if you’re ready. If you are considering a lip augmentation, it is important to schedule a consultation and educate yourself about the products and services that we provide at Plastic Surgery Chicago, LLC.
As with any medical procedure, you should advise Dr. Walton if you are allergic to any medications. You should also discuss any medications that you are taking, and you will be required to discuss your medical history. Certain diseases such as lupus or diabetes can increase your chances of complications. Smoking is another complicating factor. You will be asked to stop smoking for a period of time before the procedure.
Lip Augmentation FAQs
How long will the procedure last?
Dr. Walton will use a local anesthetic to numb the lips before the filler injections. That way, you will have little to no discomfort during the procedure. Lip augmentations are performed on an outpatient basis in the doctor’s office, meaning you will be sent home the same day. The process takes about 15 minutes.
The results of lip augmentations using Juvederm Ultra XC will usually last about a year. It depends on the procedure you select and the amount of filler used in your procedure. Some people choose to reschedule their touch up before the filler completely wears off.
Fat injections vary on how long they last. They can be a permanent solution for some individuals following 2-3 injections. Results will vary.
What can I expect after the procedure?
After the short, in-office procedure, you can expect some bruising and swelling of the lips. The filler causes some swelling that will last about 48 hours. In total, everything should settle in 7-10 days. You may have some mild bruising to conceal for a week or two after that. If you have important events within a month of the procedure, you may want to wait.
What risks are involved?
We utilize Juvederm Ultra XC because it is very safe and the complications are rare. Possible complications include under or over filling, lumps, tenderness, bruising or infection. Should you not like the result, the hyaluronic acid fillers are easily removed by injecting hyaluronidase, which is an enzyme that will break down the filler in a matter of days.
Some mild but commonly reported side effects include:
- Itching – about 30% of patients
Side effects should subside in about two weeks. Other rare side effects that occur in less than 2 percent of patients after Juvederm Ultra XC injections include hyperpigmentation and cold sore reactivation.
How soon can I return to work?
You know yourself and your tolerance for discomfort. Discuss how much time you think you’ll need for recovery with Dr. Walton or the staff at Plastic Surgery Chicago. It may be necessary to take some time off work. We suggest a minimum of three days.
When can I exercise again?
If you are physically active, you will be able to partake in physical activities several days after the injections.
What is the cost?
The cost of a lip augmentation varies depending on which form of enhancement is selected. The best option for you will be determined at your consultation with the help of Dr. Walton.
For an appointment, please call Grace at our Chicago plastic surgery office at 312-337-7795 or fill out the contact form in this page. We look forward to meeting you and helping you achieve your image transformation here in Chicago.