How Can My Lip Scar Be Improved And My Lips Be Made Bigger At The Same Time?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I have thin uneven lips due to an injury as a child. When I was seven years old I fell of my bike and split my face open on the concrete. I had a long laceration that ran from my lip down to the underside of my chin and now it is a long wide scar. My lips are naturally thinner but this scar as it crosses the lip also makes the lip uneven as well. Is there a surgery that could correct this lip step-off and in the process make them a bit fuller as well? I don’t expect Angelina Joile lips, but just some normal looking lips. I would appreciate any help you can offer me.

A: Mismatched vermilion-cutaneous edges along the lip line can be easily corrected by either reopening the lip vermilion and realigning the edges or doing a transposition of the edges through a small z-plasty scar revision. Making the lips fuller at the same time can most effectively be done by an upper and lower vermilion advancements. But whether that fine line scar along the lip lines is a good trade-off depends on how thin your lips are and if you have enough vermilion that a filling material or an implant may offer enough size change that would avoid the need for vermilion scars.
Dr. Barry Eppley
Indianapolis, Indiana