Lip augmentation is a type of cosmetic surgery or non-surgical procedure that aims to alter the appearance of the lips by increasing their fullness through enlargement using fillers.
Materials and techniques
In the late 1990, with the huge popularity of surgical rejuvenation and concomitant increase of cosmetic surgery procedures worldwide, more substances, along with bio compatible materials commonly used in other medical applications for years, became available to surgeons for use in augmenting thinning or misshapen lips into more plump and attractive features.
Some of the first widely used lip augmentation substances were:
Autologen, an injectable dermal material made from the patient’s own skin. No risk of allergy exists but the results are very temporary because the body quickly absorbs the material.
Collagen requires an allergy test because the material is extracted from bovine hides. It lasts anywhere from four weeks to three months because it is also absorbed into the body. However, the allergy test must be observed for four weeks.
Dermalogen is taken from the patient’s skin—and through a laboratory process made into a high concentration collagen that can be injected into the lips. Some studies indicate it lasts somewhat longer than collagen. Alloderm is donor tissue taken from cadavers and then denatured, purified and treated to remove viable cells that could pass along disease. Under a local anesthesia, Alloderm is placed into the mucosa, or body, of the lips in small rolls to make them larger. Alloderm can also be placed into the vermilion, the pink area of the lip, to provide definition and a sharper border.
Radiance, a synthetic, laboratory produced solution containing calcium hydroxylapatite (bone) suspended in a gel that has been safely used in medicine for years. Some studies indicate Radiance can last between three and five years. One researcher (Tzikas) found in a study of Radiance on 90 patients that 59 percent felt when injected, moderate to severe pain which disappeared two to five minutes later. But the substance produced results for an average of two years with a few patients reporting the plumping effects being sustained as long as three to five years. Of the 90 patients, four required surgical intervention due to nodules in the lips.
Gore-Tex implants. In medical uses, Gore-Tex is known as EPTFE, or expanded polytetrafluoroethylene and, commercially as Advanta, UltraSoft, and SoftForm. The EPTFE is delivered to surgeons in strips that are 1/16 inch (2.4 mm) and 3/16 (3.4 mm) diameter tubes.