Can A Lip Advancement Be Reversed?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I had an operation on my lips in order to have bigger ones. I had the operation about six months ago. I did not like the result of the operation and two months later I had a second operation. I had scar and asymmetric shape so I did not like the result again. I am regretting my decision for surgery and am missing my previous lips. My problems are the philtrum height is very short, my teeth does not appear because of mucosa and the lips have been stretched too much. I hope you can help in this regard.  I am very unhappy indeed. I want you to remedy this situation soon. I really miss my old thin lips. I have attached some pictures of my lips before and after the procedures.

A: Thank you for sending your lip pictures. You did not say what procedure was done but it appears to have been a lip or vermilion advancement on the upper and lower lips. Unfortunately there is no turning back, so to speak, when it comes to a lip advancement. Once the skin is removed to do the procedure, it can not be replaced later. In essence, you can not reverse a lip advancement procedure. There is no operation to return your lips to their once thinner appearance. The only potential improvement that I can envision is lip edge mucosal resection to achieve a bit of an inner lip roll in and expose more of the teeth.

Your case illustrates why it is always best ti be conservative in a lip advancement. You can always do more but can never do less.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana