So Kissable
February, 2012 - Issue #88
Lip Augmentation can Look Natural
One of the more common telltale signs of aging is thinning of the lips. The natural volume loss that occurs in most people's lips can, by itself, make you appear five to 10 years older. Add to this the small vertical lines above and/or below the lips, known as "smoker's lines," and more years accumulate on your face.

Two months ago, the FDA approved a filler to increase lip volume and treat "smoker's lines." Restlylane, a hyaluronic acid filler that has been used safely for over 10 years, received approval for injection in patients 21 to 65 years old. This product, like many of today's medications, is produced by genetically-engineered bacteria. There are no animal products involved and allergy is virtually unknown.

The procedure takes about 30 minutes. A topical anesthetic is applied to the lips for about 15 minutes while you wait in the comfort of your treatment room. Next, ice is held on the area for one minute. The injections take less than 10 seconds. Most patients report only minor discomfort and say that their results are well worth it. When performed by a board-certified physician trained in facial plastic surgery, the outcome should be symmetrical. The lower lip should be 1.5-times larger than the size of the upper lip. The lips should have a soft, natural appearance. They should never look stiff and there should be no evidence of "duck lips."

With the surgeon's knowledge of lip anatomy, including the location of all blood vessels, the chance of bruising and/or swelling should be minimal. The results last up to nine months and the cost is under $500.

Lip augmentation is available at Dermacure of Valencia by Craig Ingber, MD, who is Santa Clarita's only doctor authorized to instruct other physicians in this procedure. Before and after photos are available and the consultation is free.
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