Perfect lips: the answers from aesthetic medicine

20 November 2015


The lips are a fundamental element of the face, they play a very special role in interpersonal relationships. The lips are at the same time an organ of seduction and expression of feelings and emotions (joy, sadness, anger), without forgetting the role of the lips in communication. They are a strong symbol of representing our social, emotional and even sexual profile. They represent an indisputable asset of seduction.

Lips are particularly sensitive to the aging process and early dehydration. Over time, lips can lose their benefits because they are very fragile mucous membranes. They also suffer from environmental damage: cumulative sun exposure, post-menopausal hormonal deficiencies, oxidative stress, tobacco, etc.). These usually cause:
- A refinement of the lips,
- An increase in the distance between the upper lip and the base of the nose,
- A loss of volume,

In addition, the skin around them is particularly sensitive and subject to repeated muscle contractions that accelerate the degradation of the buccal rim and cause the appearance of fine lines and small folds around the lips, especially in smokers. In some people, the lips are too thin or there is an imbalance between the height of the lower and upper lip.

The different possible techniques in Aesthetic Surgery and Anti-Aging Medicine

Fortunately, nowadays, there are many aesthetic techniques to correct genetic defects and counter the effects of time. Lips can be corrected, embellished, rejuvenated, rehydrated.
The objective is to re-outline the lips, plump them up, raise the Cupid's Arch, increase the volume of the lips, restore the relief of the red lip, but also to reaffirm the philtral crests which may be naturally too fine or which have collapsed over time.
In many cases, it is also a question of filling the fine wrinkles above the upper lip and in some cases, "raising" the upper lip.
In general, lip treatment must respect an aesthetic balance between the height of the upper and lower lip, for a natural and harmonious result.

The time for outrageously inflated mouths is over, now it is time for techniques that give a natural look.

Hyaluronic acid injections

Hyaluronic acid makes it possible to redefine the hem and contours of the lips to sublimate the definition and line of the lips, to raise the Cupid's Arch, to increase the volume of the lips, to restore the relief of the red lip, but also to reaffirm the philtral peaks, to subtly rehydrate and plump the lips. It also makes it possible to treat the corners of the lips for positive expression by lifting the corners of the lips, as well as correcting any asymmetries.

Depending on the desired result and the areas to be treated, your plastic surgeon will inject hyaluronic acid of different densities and in different areas. The advantages of hyaluronic acid are numerous: it is a fast treatment (10 to 20 minutes) performed in the office, almost painless due to the presence of anesthetic coupled with hyaluronic acid. In addition, it offers immediate and natural results, and its degradation duration is long enough to be both effective and transient. Its effect is reversible (it lasts 6 to 9 months) allowing the monitoring of facial ageing. Moreover, it does not require any prior preparation of the patient and does not cause any social eviction.

Lipofilling of the lips (fat injection)

The procedure consists of removing fat from another part of the patient's body (autologous transplant), generally from the abdomen, knees, inner thighs or "saddlebags", using the liposuction technique.
The fat tissue is purified and then injected into the lips using micro-canulas in the thin lip portion to thicken it. Your plastic surgeon will make a micro incision in the corners of the lips to pass very thin cannulas. The scars are located in the fold of the lips at the corners of the mouth, so they will be invisible.
The duration of the procedure varies according to the amount of fat to be reinjected and the number of areas to be treated. It takes from 30 minutes to 1 hour.
Lipofilling lip augmentation is a surgical procedure performed most often under local anesthesia or sedation.

Tissue swelling (edema) appears within 48 hours of the procedure and will generally take 5 to 15 days to fully resolve. Bruises (bruises) appear in the first few hours in the fat reinjection areas and disappear within 10 to 20 days after the operation.
The extent of the social discomfort caused by swelling and bruising should be taken into account in order to adapt family, professional and social life. The operated areas should not be exposed to the sun or UV rays for at least 4 weeks, which would run the risk of permanent pigmentation. After resorption of the phenomena of oedema and bruising, the result begins to appear within 2 to 3 weeks after the operation.
This technique is definitive, but may reveal small irregularities.

The peeling

Its principle is to create a chemical abrasion of the dermis. There are several types of peelings:
- The superficial peeling
- The average peeling
- The deep peeling

To obtain visible results on wrinkles in the perioral area, medium or deep peeling should be used.
The medium peeling allows to completely renew the epidermis and superficial dermis. It is made with Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) and is recommended for shallow wrinkles. It has the advantage of having no post-intervention consequences, except for a few rednesses that can be "camouflaged" with appropriate make-up, and therefore does not cause any social eviction.
Deep peeling is a heavier procedure than medium peeling. It is recommended for marked wrinkles. It is made from phenol and allows a total renewal of the epidermis and deep dermis.
It requires a preparation of the skin and implies a social withdrawal of 10 to 15 days due to redness, flaking and small crusting present a few days on the skin.
In both cases, the result is not final. Indeed, wrinkles will reappear over time.

                                     
The "mechanical" dermabrasion

Dermabrasion is also a solution that can be indicated to treat wrinkles in the perioral area.
This is a purely mechanical abrasion: the surface layer of the skin is removed with a small rotating wheel, which erases the small surface wrinkles around the mouth.
The procedure is performed under local anesthesia and usually lasts 15 to 30 minutes.
Dermabrasion causes superficial bleeding of the skin, which forms very visible reddish scabs that will persist for about 7 days. This technique therefore requires a social eviction of one to two weeks. Then, the skin will appear more pink for several weeks and can be made up in order to mask this pink aspect.
This solution is temporary because over time, the wrinkles around the mouth will reappear.

Laser Treatment


Vertical wrinkles in the perioral region are a good indication for laser treatment and give excellent results.
The laser principle is a thermal abrasion of the dermis. There are a multitude of types of lasers, more or less adapted to the perioral area, with very different post-operative efficiencies and consequences. This subject will be developed in another article dedicated to laser skin rejuvenation techniques in the coming weeks.

Dermal grafting

Dermal transplantation consists in removing skin from another part of the patient's body (autograft) to give more volume to your upper lip. To do this, your plastic surgeon will remove skin (usually from the groin or an existing abdominal scar). The graft is placed through a small incision in the corner of the lips, allowing invisible scars. A socio-professional eviction of about a week due to the appearance of oedema and possible bruises is to be expected.
This technique allows a permanent result.

 

Temporary or permanent solution?

There are many techniques in anti-aging medicine and cosmetic surgery to give you or restore you perfect lips and lip contour. Nowadays, Aesthetic Doctors prefer gentle and reversible techniques. Indeed, the shape of the face, tastes and beauty criteria change over time and temporary solutions are preferable to permanent ones. Contact a competent professional


An injection or plastic surgery operation on the lips is a precise and delicate surgical procedure, requiring a great deal of rigour (precise diagnosis, rigorous and strict asepsis). The use of a qualified plastic surgeon is absolutely essential for the control of the surgical procedure

 

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