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What Is Lip Augmentation?

The lips are a central feature of the face that, when voluminous, are more youthful and attractive. Changes to the structure of the face, however, due to aging, genetics, sun damage and other factors, can cause the lips to become thin and cause the corners to droop. Lip augmentation is a facial cosmetic surgery procedure which combats these changes, helping you maintain plump, wrinkle-free lips as you age. Lip augmentation is just one of the facial rejuvenation procedures Dr. Berardi offers plastic surgery Scottsdale patients, to help them preserve their youthful appearance. Read more about what lip augmentation can do for you.

Who Is a Candidate for Lip Augmentation?

Lip augmentation is a strictly cosmetic procedure which can be performed if you are unhappy with loss of volume or thinning of the lips. You should be in good general health and have realistic expectations regarding the outcome of treatment. Although lip augmentation can reverse some signs of aging, it cannot completely stop the aging process. During a pre-surgery consultation, Dr. Berardi will evaluate your overall health and cosmetic goals to determine if lip augmentation is right for you.

What Lip Enhancement Treatments Are Available?

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Dr. Berardi performs lip augmentation using a number of methods, including fat injections, dermal fillers, lip lift and lip implants. Each of these treatments can accomplish different cosmetic goals. The type of augmentation surgery you receive will be decided during your pre-surgery consultation. Typically, lip lift surgery is performed under local anesthesia or local conscious sedation, meaning you will be awake throughout the procedure but will not experience any discomfort. The length of your treatment will vary based on the extent of changes being made, as well as the type of treatment you undergo.

» Dermal Fillers

Lip augmentation using dermal fillers helps to add volume to thin lips. Dr. Berardi may administer dermal injectable fillers, such as Restylane or Juvéderm, to plump the lips. He may also apply the filler around the corners of the mouth to eliminate wrinkles and fine lines. This procedure can be completed in less than one-half hour and requires only a numbing cream or local anesthetic. The results of lip augmentation with fillers can last about one year, though they will last longer with repeat treatments.

» Fat Injections

Similar to dermal filler injections, lip augmentation with fat injections can be performed using fat from other parts of your body, typically the buttocks, abdomen or thighs. Dr. Berardi will first perform liposuction to extract the fat from your body before purifying it and re-injecting it into the lips. This procedure is ideal if you are apprehensive about placing foreign substances, such as dermal fillers, in your body. Unlike fillers, autologous fat grafting is permanent.

» Lip Lift Surgery

Lip lift surgery is the most comprehensive form of lip augmentation we provide in Scottsdale. During this procedure, Dr. Berardi will make an incision just beneath the nose to access the skin above the lip and lift it to a higher position on the face. This procedure may be performed in conjunction with lip implants, in which small implants are placed inside the lips to both lift and volumize them.

» Lip Implant

A lip implant may be used in patients that desire more volume. Like fat grafting, it is permanent but does not require a separate surgical site. This involves using a soft silicone implant placed through two very small incisions in the corner of your mouth.

How will I know which lip augmentation option is right for me?

Fat transfers, dermal filler injections, and lip implants all add volume and shape to the lips. Dermal fillers are the best tool for defining the borders of the lips. Fat augmentation is a little less precise, but it has the added benefit of including liposuction on an area with unwanted fat. Implants have the benefit of consistent, permanent changes in the size or shape of your lips.

Lift lifts are different in that their goal isn’t to add volume; this procedure aims to lift the lips, especially the Cupid’s Bow in the center. Patients sometimes combine a lip lift with the placement of implants to add volume and lift the lips.

During your consultation with Dr. Berardi, the two of you will discuss the changes you’d like to see in your lips. You’ll discuss how you feel about permanent changes, such as with implants, versus temporary change with dermal fillers. If you’d like to, in effect, demo some volume increases then injection of fillers is the way to go. If the prospect of moving fat from unwanted areas to the lips is appealing, that could be the best approach. We’ll discuss your options and you’ll be fully settled upon what we’re doing if you choose to go ahead with your lip augmentation.

Hear What Our Patients have to Say!

I came in to get lip filler from the nurse injector Teresa. She was the nicest person, and I love the outcome of my lips! Thank you everyone at Berardi Aesthetics & Plastic Surgery! — K.B

I came in to Dr. Berardi's for an appointment with their Nurse Injector Teresa. She was absolutely amazing! I received botox, and lip filler and the outcome was amazing! She is the sweetest person and is so amazing at what she does! — T.B

I came in for a consultation with Dr. Berardi, and was thoroughly impressed with how professional and sweet all of his office staff was. I truly feel like I am in good hands with Dr. Berardi and his staff. — K.B

Is lip augmentation permanent?

The permanence of lip augmentation depends on the method. Dermal fillers generally last between 6 and 9 months in the lips. This is because the lips are involved in so many movements that the body tends to break down the hyaluronic acid more quickly than other areas of the face.

 Fat augmentation is permanent once the fat cells acquire a blood supply and “take.” 

Lip lifts and lip implants are permanent surgical changes.

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How many lip enhancement treatments can I get?

This really only applies to volume increase with dermal fillers. There isn’t any limit on the number of times you can have dermal fillers injected. The fillers Dr. Berardi uses on the lips are hyaluronic acid fillers. They have been approved for use on the lips by the FDA. Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance in the human body responsible for plumping and firming the skin, so it is easily accepted by the body when injected. Fillers typically provide additional volume for about 6 to 9 months in the lips. At that point, the body begins to break down and absorb the hyaluronic acid and your results diminish. Another injection session with Dr. Berardi will maintain your added volume.

What is Recovery Like After Lip Augmentation?

Your lip augmentation recovery period will vary based on your individual characteristics and the type of lip augmentation procedure you receive. If you undergo lip augmentation with dermal fillers, you will need little to no downtime and experience very little discomfort. Lip augmentation through fat injections will require some rest while the site where fat was taken from recovers and the swelling of the lip resolves. Lip implants will have a similar degree of swelling and bruising. Either of these surgeries will require approximately a week of recovery time while swelling and bruising resolves. With lip lift surgery, you should expect the lips to be swollen and possibly bruised for several days after treatment. You will be able to return to work and normal activities after about four days, possibly sooner. Dr. Berardi will prescribe pain medications and antibiotics to facilitate a safe and comfortable healing process. Dr. Berardi will monitor your recovery closely and is available around the clock to address any concerns that may arise during your recovery period.

Are there any risks associated with lip augmentation?

Risks correspond to the method of augmentation Dr. Berardi is performing, although all of these options present low risk. With dermal fillers you may have some redness and slight swelling at the injection sites, but this usually only lasts a day or so. If you ice your lips immediately after your session, this helps. There is a chance of developing lumps, but that is rare and can be reversed immediately with an injection of an enzyme, hyaluronidase, that neutralizes the hyaluronic acid.

Fat injections have minimal risk, as you’re augmenting your lips with your own fat. Dr. Berardi uses a closed system for liposuction and then to purify the fat before it is injected back into your lips. This minimizes any risk of infection. With fat augmentation, the only real risk, if you want to call it that, is that it is difficult to know how much of the fat will “take” successfully. Not all of the fat will acquire a blood supply and become basically permanent. A second session could be necessary if you want to fill out the lips more after the fat has settled into place.

Lip lift surgery is a minor procedure and involves only a small incision to subtly lift the lips. These are low risk surgeries with Dr. Berardi.

Augmenting the lips with silicone implants has some risk of the implants shifting, but this is rare.

Schedule Your Consultation Today

Lip augmentation is a subtle yet noticeable way to enhance your appearance. If signs of aging have altered the appearance of your lips, we encourage you to contact our practice today at 480.397.0711 to schedule a consultation. Dr. Berardi will review all of your options for lip augmentation, as well as other facial rejuvenation procedures such as Scottsdale rhinoplasty, facelift and eyelid surgery. If you are interested, he can also discuss other cosmetic procedures such as Phoenix breast augmentation and body contouring surgeries such as abdominoplasty.

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