A noninvasive, nonsurgical procedure is enticing customers who might not otherwise seek out cosmetic treatments.
I sat back, exposing the vulnerable area under my chin, bracing myself for the pinch of the needle. I clutched an ice pack, ready to apply it, and looked around as my heart raced. I was about to have vials of synthetic stomach acid shot into my double chin, erasing it, I hoped, forever.
The drug designed to treat my “submental fat” (the fat pocket under the chin) is the new cosmetic injectable Kybella, which promises to dissolve fat cells through a series of injections. There’s very little downtime, it’s noninvasive and nonsurgical, and there’s little risk. The drug is the first (and only) injectable designed for getting rid of double chin.
Approved by the FDA in 2015, this is an alternative to liposuction or surgery, to destroy fat cells. When injected into subcutaneous fat, this cytolytic drug destroys the cell membrane—in targeted locations. The dissolved fat is now cellular debris, and gets cleared into the lymphatic and circulatory systems by specialized immunologic cells. This happens gradually over the span of several weeks. The deoxycholic acid follows the same path; it gets metabolized and broken down, and then excreted as waste.
As I hit my 30s, I began to feel a bit bothered by my double chin. While not especially noticeable, it has been a part of my profile for as long as I can remember; it’s genetic. I’ve often wished it gone, but I never considered a surgical fix. That seemed like an extreme measure. I never saw myself getting any kind of cosmetic procedure at all. Then I saw a magazine ad for a new injectable, noninvasive double chin treatment.
I was able to try Kybella at a spa. The owner says they see about 30 clients per month for Kybella, and that all of their customers have seen a positive result. “People are very interested in this treatment,” she says. “We have seen amazing results.” My expert injector loves administering Kybella because of its “wow factor.” This product can absolutely change your profile and really improve the shape and contour of your jawline.
They took a series of high-tech, 3-D photos, some Kybella before and after shots, and applied numbing cream under my chin. Then she applied a temporary dot grid; a map of injection sites. Then they started injecting. I felt the needles, but it wasn’t unbearable. I iced my chin when she would pause for a new needle. In all, I had about 30 injections from three vials of Kybella. Though they were many, the shots themselves only took maybe five minutes or so. She recommended I do two more treatments, approximately six weeks apart. Everyone needs two to six treatments.
For each treatment, the injector uses between one and three vials of Kybella, depending on how much submental fat one has. Kybella’s cost can exceed that of liposuction (which generally runs between $2,000-$5.000), but many clients are willing to pay a higher price to avoid going under the knife. People are excited that there is now a best way to get rid of double chin. Previously, the only procedure that was available to treat submental fullness was surgical liposuction, which is an invasive procedure with its own inherent risks and benefits.
Great candidates for Kybella are those whose submental fat is genetic, rather than weight-related. Younger clients typically do well because they have better skin elasticity, and are less likely to have excess, sagging skin under the chin. It is important to make sure that the fullness under the chin is from fat under the skin and not caused by other conditions, such as laxity of the skin. Submental fat can be seen in a wide range of ages, as factors such as genetics, hormone status, and weight can influence the amount of fat under the skin.
Kybella is bringing in a totally new group of injectable consumers. Around 45 percent of patients getting Kybella are new to aesthetic treatments—they’re people who haven’t previously been in a cosmetic or aesthetic physician's office. And the procedure is attracting an unlikely clientele: men. Many men who wouldn’t have previously considered cosmetic procedures are coming in for Kybella to sharpen their jawline.
The process can be relatively slow, with results taking weeks. This can be discouraging, especially to people who are self-conscious about their chins to begin with. The good news is that once your process is completed, those fat cells are not coming back. There is no upkeep to consider, or future costs. You take those fat cells away, they won't recreate themselves. Studies have been done on the long-term results, and “in general, between 75 and 90 percent of patients are still maintaining their response at up to five years. Most patients really turn a corner after the second treatment, seeing a noticeable reduction in fat.
In more than 20 studies, nearly 70 percent of the thousands of patients reported physical and emotional improvement. That sounds promising. Two U.S. trials put before the FDA showed that nearly 80 percent of those treated with Kybella noticed a reduction of their submental fat and thus had improved satisfaction about their appearance. And doctors are also happy about the advent of this drug. Physicians have really enjoyed the precision and the efficacy of Kybella. It does what it's going to do … it’s gonna kill fat cells wherever it's injected.
Right now at Radiant Remedies in Plymouth, MA we are offering a Kybella special. For more information click: getting rid of double chin.