Q&As on Lip Reduction

1. What is involved in the lip reduction surgery?

People with lips that are larger than desirable and out of proportion with the other features can now resort to a cosmetic procedure called Lip reduction surgery. The procedure can help to reduce the size of the lips thus changing the appearance. Lip reduction is normally performed under local anesthesia but a general anesthesia may be needed if other procedures are being done in conjunction with the lip reduction procedure. To balance out the facial features, a lip reduction procedure can be done on both the upper and lower lip. The procedure should just take about 30 to 60 minutes to complete. For the procedure the surgeon makes an incision on the inside of the lip or intraorally. The incision made will run along the length of the lip. The excess mucosa and tissue are then removed from the lip and then the incision will be closed with dissolvable stitches. No scar is visible on the outside.

2. Who is the ideal candidate for lip reduction?

 Anyone with naturally large lips and want to bring about a change in the shape and size of the lips is an ideal candidate for lip reduction. This can also be performed on people who have been displeased with the results of a permanent lip augmentation procedure done earlier. They should be in good general health and not smoke cigarettes for a month before and after the surgery. For some the shape of the lips could get asymmetrical with aging and they can also opt for this procedure. Lip reduction is also usually done with other procedures like alarbase reduction,chin augmentation. Those with Autoimmune and inflammatory diseases or with conditions that causes frequent mouth sores are not good candidates for lip reduction surgery. The full medical history should be shared with your surgeon in advance so that you can limit your risk of side effects.

3. What is the recovery period for lip reduction?

 After the lip reduction procedure, the swelling and redness can last for a few days, first couple days one may find difficult to talk ie the speech maynot be clear.You will be asked to eat soft non spicy food for about a week ,also one may find it difficult to brush ones teeth for first 3-4 days.

The sutures may be removed in one or two weeks once the lips are fully healed. Healing rate may differ for everyone. During recovery, the doctor may advise to apply ice packs to the lips. Some painkillers may be suggested. If the post operative symptoms do not come down in two weeks inform the doctor. Within a week the patient will be able to return to work though lips may be slightly swollen. If dissolvable sutures are used, they are usually gone in 7-10 days, but they are on the inside of the lips and cannot be seen. Early results can be seen within 2 weeks, but it takes approximately 3 months for 100% of the swelling to subside. To ensure that the final results are great go with a board-certified plastic surgeon.

4. What are medical conditions causing large lips?

Lip reduction has been gaining popularity among those with naturally large lips. In some cases, this can be a prominent feature in certain race of people or in those with certain ethnicity. But this procedure is not just performed for cosmetic reasons. Some conditions that lip reduction could help with are drooling, poor speech, labial incompetence, or other challenges, like low self-esteem and social anxiety. A lip reduction procedure can help to normalize or restore proper oral function. Apart from cosmetic reasons there could actually be medical reasons that could lead to abnormally large lips. The most common of these are Macrocheilia or excessively prominent lips, Fistulas (“pits”) of the lower lip, Double Lip, and a neurological disorder called Melkersson-Rosenthal syndrome, Dentofacial deformities (pseudomacrocheilia), generalized thickening of all tissues, Lymphedematous infiltration, Inflammatory infiltration, Glandular hypertrophy, Hemangiomas or red nodules of extra blood vessels, infection or possibly some trauma.

5. What are some benefits of lip reduction?

 When a facial feature happens to be abnormally disproportional there can be some lack of confidence leading to social anxiety. A lip reduction can greatly help to deal with such issues. Lip reduction is a serious surgical procedure that should only be performed by board-certified plastic surgeons. Some of the benefits of the lip reduction procedure can include removing excess tissue that cause lip deformity, enhancing facial harmony by balancing the upper and lower lips, making an overly large upper lip slimmer and prettier, creating better overall facial harmony, helping to get rid of asymmetric lips, providing a beautiful natural lip line. Other than the aesthetic benefits the procedure can also have other advantages like requiring only a local anesthesia and can be performed as an outpatient procedure and can be performed in less than an hour. Just one treatment may be needed to achieve permanent results. There will also not be any visible scarring.

6. What are some aftercare tips of lip reduction?

Adhering to aftercare instruction of the surgeon throughout the healing period is extremely crucial in order to get the best possible results of the lip reduction surgery. Some tips for optimal recovery can be applying ice packs to the lips to help reduce swelling. Apply healing ointment if the doctor has prescribed any. Use a gentle facial cleanser as part of the skin routine for the first week, but get it okayed by the doctor to make sure it is free of harmful chemicals. Make sure to clean the lips twice daily using damp sterile gauze. Take care while brushing the teeth so the lips doesn’t get wet. Avoid applying makeup on or close to the lips area. Avoid consuming any spicy or salty foods and drink liquids through a straw. It is necessary to not pick, peel or rub the lip area as this can lead to uneven healing, scarring, and infection.Eat soft food for first few days.

7. What can you expect after a lip reduction surgery?

Right after the lip reduction surgery you will notice that the extra-large lips are reduced to a great extent and the results may not visible almost immediately after the surgery due to swelling. As swelling reduces one can appreciate the results,Though it will take at least 3 months to see the final outcomes of the procedure. The results of lip reduction procedure are quite permanent. The lips will remain swollen for the first few days. There should also be some temporary bruising. Some tightness or stiffness in the lips can be expected and it will last until the scar gets soft. It may be a good idea to avoid acidic foods that can aggravate the scar and soreness. To promote healing, it could help to sleep with two pillows at least for the first two weeks. There may be some postoperative discomfort and normal activities can be resumed after 7 to 10 days. Though strenuous activities will need to wait for at least for 4 weeks.

8. How to prepare for a lip reduction surgery?

 The results of lip reduction procedure will all depend on the doctor chosen and the clinic you decide to go with. The most important step of preparing for a lip reduction surgery is choosing the plastic surgeon that you’ll work with. Make sure the doctor is a board-certified plastic surgeon. The result of the surgery is permanent so it is important to never compromise on going with only the best. Ask about the doctor’s experience in performing this specific surgery.Make sure you go into the decision only with realistic expectations. Once you choose the doctor and share your medical history he/she can say if you are a good candidate. The doctor will then give you some pre-surgery instructions to make sure you are properly prepared. These may include stopping smoking, discontinuing the use of anti-inflammatory or blood-thinning medications, or other instructions depending on your unique situation.

9. What is involved during a lip reduction consultation?

During the consultation be honest about your issues with your lips and your expectations from surgery. The doctor should also discuss the surgery itself, what it could involve and the various procedure options that are available. Lip reduction surgery is done to decrease the volume in the lips and also improve the shape ,but this can also be a method if you want to adjust the results from a previous lip augmentation procedure. It’s a surgical procedure done as day care surgery,it may involve risks like infection,bleeding,infection,asymmetry.So, it is important to understand all this before going ahead with the procedure. When performed by an experienced and board-certified plasticsurgeon lip reduction procedure is absolutely safe. Understand more about what to expect from this type of procedure to see if it’s the right fit for you.

10. Are the results of lip reduction permanent?

Lip Reduction surgery involves the removal of excess lip tissue to reduce the overall volume. The aim of this surgery is to balance both lips to live in a harmonious relationship with one another. The results of lip reduction are permanent but they could still be susceptible to the normal effects of aging. But the procedure will have you looking the best. The final results should be evident in a month once it is fully healed. There won’t be any scars as the incision is made inside the lip. But in those with a tendency to form keloid scars then there could be a scar at the incision on the lip. Lip reduction results are immediate and permanent.

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