Lip surgery & surgical lip enlargement
Aesthetic lip surgery is used to restore age related changes or treat congenital divergences from the aesthetical ideal. The most common reason is age related changes to the lip region.
Age related changes to the lips come about primarily due to the slackening of skin and face musculature and the fullness withering away.
The changes in the lip region and how they alter ones appearance
- Small vertical wrinkles (smoke wrinkles) appear on the upper lips contour
- The connective tissue above the upper lip sinks which leads to the upper lip rotating inwards and less pinkness of the lip becomes visible.
- The upper lips definition and ”cupid’s bow” is blurred.
- The bottom lip sinks together with the surrounding tissue which can cause the corners of the mouth to start pointing downwards and leave a sulky appearance.
The vertical small wrinkles (smoke wrinkles) that appear on the upper lip can generally be treated effectively by filling out the wrinkles with an injection treatment » alternatively the outer contour can be polished with a chemical/laser peeling or a normal skin dermabrasion.
Surgical lip treatment methods
Age related shape and size changes to the lips can be improved with relatively simple surgical techniques. However, it is important that the patient thoroughly understands what he or she should expect from the procedure, after cycle and final result. Below you will find a summarised statement about the various surgical methods;
Lip lift (gull-wing plasty)
A lip lift or so called gull-wing plasty involves removing a small gull-wing shaped skin graft directly below the nose whereby the upper lip is lifted and the skin attached under the nose.
By shortening the skin above the lip and lifting it towards the nose the lip is rolled and lifted showing more of the pink lip as well as cupids bow providing the upper lip with more distinction. You will be left with a small scar at the base of the nose. This method is effective on older patients and should mainly be used on them.
V-to-Y plasty lip augmentation
A lip enlargement with V-to-Y technique aims at increasing the lips size by pushing/rolling forward the tissue from the inside of the lip. The result is achieved by a V shaped incision being placed on the inside of the lip so that the lips mucous membrane is released. Thereafter the incision is sutured in the shape of a Y, by doing so the pink of the lip is pushed forward and becomes visible. The surgery does however not give any increased fullness/volume to the lip.
Corner Of Mouth Lift (COML)
A corner of mouth lift is used to lift the corners of the mouth that have sunk due to slackness of the underlying tissue. By removing a small wedge shaped skin graft above the mouths outer edge and then lifting and attaching it to the tissue above a new upward pointing angle to the corner of the mouth is achieved.
Another method used to increase the amount of visible lip pink and thus achieve a size increase of the upper lip is performed by carefully removing a thin skin graft that follows the upper lips contour and then closing the incision. The pulling of the incisions upper edge rolls the lip pink out so that it becomes visible.
Many cosmetic surgeons have left this method since it has proven difficult to naturally achieve the lips contour and to avoid ugly scars. When using this method the patient needs to be prepared to always use lipstick. The method is however successfully performed on the bottom lip since the contour is not as complex.