A thin lip can be augmented with the patient’s own tissue (fat, anadesma), with implantation of an artificial material (collagen, hyaluron acid) or by a surgery using the tissue in vicinity of the lip.
Why you should undergo a lip operation (augmentation)?
If you are not satisfied with the shape or size of your lips you could undergo a procedure that will solve your problem. Sometimes even cutting a fraenum between inner part of the lip and jawbone can be part of lip augmentation which helps to achieve better results of the surgery. The surgical procedure has permanent effect, on the contrary by collagen injections or fat implants and hyaluron acid temporary effect can be expected (in average around six months). In most cases it is women who undergo the lip augmentation although exceptionally even men do.
The process of operation – augmentation
Lip augmentation with the use of own tissue
If the surgeon recommends you a procedure using your own tissue from another part of your body, it will most probably be a tissue (anadesma or hypodermis) from the temporal, abdominal, gluteal or femoral area. It is easy for your body to accept it because it is your own tissue. The disadvantage of this procedure is that another scar remains in the place where the tissue has been removed.
Lip augmentation with the use of adjacent lip tissue
By this procedure several cuneate incisions are made on the inner side of the lip and after the preparation and release of the surrounding mucosa the adjacent tissue is moved up to make the lip look plumper. The scars that are placed in the inner side of the lips are thus not visible.
Lip augmentation with the use of implant
After a consultancy with you the surgeon may choose to insert implants to the border of the lips. Mostly it is a non-woven cloth with a specific structure (e.g. Goretex). It is well accepted by human tissue which can smoothly grow through.
Are you a candidate for lip enhancement?
If your lips are too thin or you are not satisfied with their shape, this procedure may be effective for you. With lip augmentation you can make your lips look fuller and more sexy.
However, be realistic in your expectations and consult them with your surgeon. It is necessary to distinguish whether it is the colour or the size of your lips that you are not satisfied with. The surgeon should tell you which procedure will be the best for you – transferring your own tissue, using the adjacent lip tissue or application of an implant.
Before the lip operation (augmentation)
During the first consultation you should discuss all your expectations with the surgeon. He/she shall ask you about your health and potential allergy to drugs. You may be requested to avoid certain drugs, especially those containing acetylsalicylic acid (Aspirin, Alnagon, Acylpyrin, Mironal etc.). They can cause more bleeding during and after the surgery. The surgeon will also check your mouth. If you suffer from any of the following active lip or oral cavity infections, you will have to postpone the procedure (aphtae, herpes, cold, tonsilitis).
Lip operation is in most cases performed under local anaesthesia, however, under the patient’s request general anaesthesia may be applied. If the operation is performed under general anaesthesia, note that you shall avoid eating, drinking and smoking for approximately six hours before the operation and that you may stay at the clinic overnight.
After the lip operation (augmentation)
The incisions are closed using non-absorbable sutures that are removed within 7 to 10 days. First days after the surgery the treated area will be very swollen and sensitive. To relief the swelling it is recommended to ice the lips. To avoid infection rinse your mouth with a diluted mouthwash several times a day, especially after eating. Use a straw for drinking during the first days after the procedure. You may also prefer spoon meals as well. The surgeon will give you instructions of what you should do after the procedure.
Approximately 14 days after the operation you should start with pressure massage. They are made by pressing the lip in the scar area between the fingers. You should repeat the massage several times a day. You can return to work usually one week after the surgery.
How long do the results last?
The effects of the surgical procedure are usually permanent.