Q: Dr. Eppley, I found a picture below on your site, and i wanted to ask you what exactly has been done here.It looks like lip lift but it has been lifted not only in the middle, but on the sides too!I wanted to do a lip lift, but i always was aware that it lifts only the middle part, which makes lips look unnatural, but doctors who I’ve asked said that it is not true. You are the first one who confirmed my suspicions, so I kind of trust your opinion now.
A: You are correct about a lip lift, it can never do more than lift the central part of the lip. (cupid’s bow) It can look natural if it is not overdone. Some surgeons do overdo them because they believe that the more one pulls up in the center that it will somehow lift up the sides. But this, as you have surmised, is incorrect. The lady in the pictures had a lip or vermilion advancement which moves (‘lifts’) the entire vermilion or lip edge upward from mouth corner to mouth corner. This is done by removing a strip of skin at the lip edge.
The lip advancement is a close cousin to the lip lift but is much ore effective and is the only good lip enhancement option in very thin lips. The trade-off for its effectiveness is that it creates a very fine scar at the lip-skin junction. But in properly selected patients this does not turn out to be a concern.
Dr. Barry Eppley