Lip reduction surgery also known as reduction cheiloplasty involves reducing the size of the lips and projection of the lip, typically the lower lip. There are many reasons why someone would need or want to reduce the size of the lower lip, including cosmetic or aesthetic appearance, and to improve use of the lips. This procedure can also be beneficial for patients with medical conditions that affect oral function such as cleft lip which can cause problems eating, drooling and low-self confidence. This procedure can be combined with other facial surgery procedures such as rhinoplasty, brow lift, lip lift and facelift.
According to American Society of Plastic Surgeons overly large lips can result from several different abnormalities:
- Melkersson-Rosenthal syndrome
- Inflammatory infiltration
- Hemangiomas or vascular malformations like Sturge-Weber Syndrome
- Generalized thickening of all tissues
- Silicone injections
Who is a Good Candidate for Lip Reduction?
An ideal candidate for this lip enhancement procedure are patients who suffer from having an enlarged lip and feel self-conscious may struggle with communicating in public and suffer from a low self-esteem. Patients like this may benefit from a reduction cheiloplasty in their social life, and in day to day functionality. The ideal candidate must have realistic expectations, in overall good health and is a nonsmoker.
A common reason why a person may have a larger lower lip is vascular malformations. These malformations cause abnormal enlargement of the lower lip. Scarring may be present on the lip as well. Typically the lower lip should be only slightly larger than the upper lip. If the lower lip is too large, it can sometimes take away from other facial features, and it can cause the patient to feel self-conscious.
During your consultation visit, Dr. Payne will answer any questions or concerns you may have and discuss risks and benefits and come up with a unique plan that suits best for your realistic expectations.
What to Expect With Lip Reduction Surgery
Lip reduction procedure is a cosmetic surgery performed in an outpatient hospital setting. This plastic surgery is an outpatient procedure performed with local anesthesia and general anesthesia. Dr. Payne will delicately make small incisions for the lower lip reduction in the red portion of the lip called the vermilion which is hidden. Sometimes a vertical incision is necessary if the lip is quite large. This incision can extend to just above the chin area.
Will the Scar Be Permanent?
Yes there will be some scarring but these types of scars heal really well and are easily hidden. Some techniques will hide the scar on the inside of the lip or on the mucosa. Some incisions are hidden on the vermillion border of the lip where the red portion of the lip is located such as with the “bikini lip reduction” technique. Other rejuvenation advancements in lip reduction surgery is to hide the scars under the nose for an upper lip lift and reduction. Occasionally the scar for the lower lip with be vertical in the middle of the lip and transversely from one corner of the mouth to the other along the vermillion border. In order to make one lip smaller and one larger, a technique involving a lip switch or Abbe flap procedure can be performed. This involves a two stage procedure where the first surgery is preformed to switch a portion of the lower lip to the upper lip, keeping the lips attached for about 3 weeks before a second surgery is performed to divide the lips.
Dr. Payne is not just a facial plastic surgeon, but also trained in craniofacial plastic and reconstructive surgery performing hundreds of lip surgeries over 15 years. The most challenging lip surgeries are for correction of cleft lip deformities in infants and revising poorly done cleft lip repairs in adolescents, teenagers and adults.