Do you wish you had full, voluptuous lips?

I’m seeing lots of new information about lip fillers and lip enhancement. So, I asked Medical Contributor Dr. Rod Rohrich a few basic questions about the newest cosmetic treatments for lips.

Dr. Rohrich, what is the difference between lip fillers and lip enhancement?

Jane, the difference is very subtle, enhancement encompasses both the lip body and the corners together in a natural manner so it looks good, not over done!!!

So what is the cost of lip enhancement, what results can you expect and what is the downtime for the procedure?

If done well by a board certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist –  you will get a great natural result. The cost can range from $800 to $16oo. Downtime is only a hour or 2, plus avoiding exercise for 24 hours. Using an ice or cold compresses on the lips 16 hours is beneficial.

The lips seem like such a sensitive area, is getting a lip filler painful?

No, not usually as we use a topical anesthetic agent and the filler has local anesthesia in it. The only sensitive area is the  central upper lip VC border, as well as when you fill the fine lines – both can be sensitive for a moment but are worth it !!

How do you avoid the “fish” looking mouth we’ve all seen? 

It is so important to use a board certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist who has a great sense of aesthetics and what it normal. You should ask to look at examples of his of her work. You want the result to look normal and that means your upper lip sould not stick out more than the lower lip, which give the “trout” look you mentioned. That’s a normal look for giraffes or gorillas, but not in humans!  No one wants the bad Hollywood look.

As women age and lips get thinner, is a filler a practical option?

Yes, absolutely Jane, the best option is to use a hyaluronic acid soft filler like Juvederm to give you a natural long lasting result that is safe as well.


Rod J. Rohrich, MD, Distinguished Teaching Professor and Founding Chair of the Department of Plastic Surgery at UT Southwestern Medical Center, is an internationally known surgeon and innovative leader/educator in plastic surgery. His interests span the entire spectrum of plastic surgery, from craniomaxillofacial surgery to aesthetic surgery, and have resulted in over 700 peer reviewed scientific articles. He served as President of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the largest society of board certified plastic surgeons in the world. Dr. Rohrich has been a Visiting Professor to over 150 organizations/societies and chaired over 100 plastic surgery educational symposia worldwide. Dr. Rohrich received his medical degree from Baylor University College of Medicine; completed a plastic surgery residency at the University of Michigan Medical Center, and did further specialty training in pediatric plastic surgery at the Radcliffe Infirmary/Oxford University and hand/microvascular surgery at the Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School. Dr. Rohrich has received the top prestigious national research, teaching and distinguished service awards from plastic surgery professional societies. He is Editor-in-Chief of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, the most prestigious peer reviewed medical journal in the world for plastic surgeons.


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