Most of us like to think of a double chin as someone else’s problem. Truth be told, most of us have some sagging and fat collecting under our jawline. It’s a common sign of aging. Previously, there wasn’t much that could be done about a double chin other than surgery.
But that all changed in the spring of 2015 when Kybella® was approved by the FDA. Kybella® is an injectable that breaks down fat and slims the profile, reducing patients’ double chins. Dr. Guarnieri offers Kybella® for his patients at Williamsburg Plastic Surgery.
What Is Kybella?
Kybella® isn’t an elaborate design; it’s basically deoxycholic acid. Deoxycholic acid occurs naturally in the human body. Its job is to help the body break down and absorb dietary fat. Each session, depending on the amount of fat that the patient has accumulated under his or her jaw, Dr. Guarnieri uses from one to three vials of Kybella®.
How Does Kybella Reduce Double Chins?
The way Kybella® works is remarkably simple. Because deoxycholic acid’s job is to break down fat, the idea is to inject it under the chin and let it go to work. Deoxycholic acid helps break down fat in the foods we eat, but it doesn’t distinguish between dietary fat or fat that simply accumulates under your jaw.
When Dr. Guarnieri injects Kybella® throughout your chin, the deoxycholic acid breaks down the fat cells and your body flushes them from your system. The fat cells are gone for good, and your body has less capability to store fat down the road. Without the fat to weigh down the skin and create a double chin, the sagging is dramatically lessened and, voila, your profile is back to how it was in your younger days!
It takes just a few minutes for Dr. Guarnieri to administer your Kybella®. He injects Kybella® with a very fine needle in numerous spots under your chin. Most people don’t feel the need for topical anesthetic, but you can have topical Lidocaine if you request.
Kybella® breaks down the fat in your double chin. So, it can’t tighten loose sagging skin. If your double chin is more a result of gravity and slackening skin, then Kybella® won’t improve it very much. In those cases, a neck lift or facelift could tighten up your profile. However, if your double chin is mostly due to accumulated fat, Kybella® is perfect for you.
Before & After Kybella Treatment
How Many Sessions of Kybella Will I Need?
There isn’t a set number of Kybella® sessions. The number depends on how much fat you have in your chin and what goals you have for your profile. The FDA has set the maximum number of Kybella® sessions at six, but we’ve found that some patients are happy with their results from between two to four sessions.
When Will I See My Results from Kybella?
The results after Kybella® injections are not immediate. First, there will be some swelling that needs to resolve. Plus, the lymphatic system has to flush the broken down fat. Your profile will begin slimming in a couple weeks and will continue for months. Most patients start to really see a change after their second session.
How Long Do My Kybella Results Last?
Kybella® removes fat cells permanently. Once these cells are gone, your body has decreased capacity to store fat under your jawline in the future. In other words, your slimmer profile is here to stay, unless you put on a bunch of weight in the future. Your skin can slacken with age, but the fat will be permanently gone.
The risks that come with Kybella® are similar to those with dermal fillers: numbness, redness, bruising, residual pain, hardness in the areas of the injections, and swelling. Swelling is the most typical after-effect with Kybella®. This is caused by the deoxycholic acid working to dissolve the fat. This swelling usually peaks at 24 hours post-treatment and can last from two days to three weeks.