Frequently Asked Questions About Lip Lift
Lip lifts can help bring harmony to a person’s face by altering the length of the upper lip. Balance can also be improved during a lip lift by adding volume to the upper and/or lower lip, increasing the red portion of the upper lip that is visible, shortening the area between the nose and upper lip, or softening the downturned corners of the upper lip. Patients who have no show of their upper teeth when smiling may look into a lip lift.
Ideal candidates for a lip lift are those born with thin lips or a long distance between the top of the upper lip and the bottom of the nose. Candidates may also be men or women who have lost volume or had the length of the lip increase during the aging process. Anyone undergoing a plastic surgery procedure should be a non-smoker in good health, with no life-threatening illnesses.
A lip lift consultation with a surgeon will include a discussion of your medical history and any medications or substances you are using. It is important to disclose any drug allergies you may have and other procedures that have been performed in the past.
The doctor will want to know what you would like to achieve with the lip lift procedure. He will discuss your options with you. The lips will be examined and measurements will be taken.
Photographs for your medical records may also be produced. Information about recovery and risks will be given to candidates so that they can make informed decisions prior to going through with the procedure.
Some medications and supplements should not be taken prior to surgery since they can increase bleeding. Aspirin and anti-inflammatory drugs should be avoided along with vitamin E and several herbal supplements. Use of these substances will need to stop a couple weeks before. Smokers should also quit smoking tobacco products prior to the surgery. Further instructions will be provided by the doctor.
A lip lift is a minimally invasive procedure, requiring only local anesthesia. The procedure is fairly simple, but requires an artistic eye to achieve desirable results. The techniques used during the procedure are largely dependent on the goals of the patient and whether he or she is looking to increase volume or show more of the red part of the lip. Filler injections can be used to add volume.
Incisions for lip lifts are made at the base of the nose to shorten the area above the upper lip and raise the lip to a more pleasing position. The upper lip is shortened and appears fuller after a wing shaped area of skin is removed and closed with sutures. Sometimes this procedure is referred to as a subnasal lift.
Some surgical techniques used by Dr. Frankel also involve incisions inside of the lip or above the corners of the mouth.
Times for cosmetic surgery procedures vary from patient to patient. A lip lift can take as little as 30 minutes.
Most scars are unnoticeable and will fade over time. Prior to that time they may be camouflaged with makeup. In the rare case that the scar does not heal well, laser treatments, injections, or dermabrasion may be able to help significantly reduce the appearance of the scar.
A moderate degree of swelling is typical for the first 72 hours after a lip lift. This can be controlled with a cold compress. A small amount of bruising may be present, but will fade in less than a week. Any pain or discomfort may be able to be controlled with pain medication. Sutures will be removed 5 days following surgery.
Most patients are fully recovered from a lip lift procedure after 5 -7 days. Patients must remember to use sun protection regularly and lead a healthy lifestyle if they want the outcome of their procedure to be preserved.
Although most surgical procedures go smoothly, it is important to make patients aware of the risks and complications that can occur with a lip lift. One such risk is an uneven, asymmetrical shape. This can occur during healing or from issues during surgery. Numbness may be felt for some time following the procedure. Scarring can also be more prominent than intended. Infection is rare, but a possibility. Following post-surgical instructions will help limit risks.
Lip lifts are typically considered cosmetic and not covered by medical insurance. Inquire about financing options with your doctor.