Nearly Half of Americans’ Double Chins Bother Them, Says Maker of Kybella®: South Jersey Dermatologist Explains

The results from a new survey commissioned by Allergan of almost 2,000 American men and women reveal that 47 percent of them are bothered by the appearance of the area under their chin. Nearly half the participants said that their appearance was negatively impacted by this area, which has paved the way for a surge in popularity and demand for treatment services such as Kybella®, South Jersey dermatologist Dr. Robin Levin explains.

The participants in this survey were American women and men between the ages of 18 to 65. The details of this survey were discussed at a meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) on March 14 in Orlando, FL, and exhibited how that pocket of fat underneath the skin between the neck and chin – frequently referred to as submental fullness – can impact both a person’s self-perception and social perception, as well as their resultant behavior.

The survey respondents reported that they often enacted certain behaviors to minimize the appearance of their double chin, such as shying away from photos, and avoiding video chats and conference calls.

This increased attention to fullness in the submental region has almost certainly increased the demand for a treatment such as Kybella®.

Kybella® (marketed under the name Belkyra® outside the United States) is the first (and only) injectable treatment that has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to reduce the appearance of submental fat.

Deoxycholic acid is the active ingredient in Kybella®. It is a bile acid that is produced naturally in the body, and it works to help in the break down and absorption of dietary fat. It is important to note that while the size can be reduced to a certain extent with changes in diet and exercise, these measures will not make the fat cells go away. These cells, as a result, lay in wait to store more fat, and the whole cycle can repeat itself, making their removal resistant to such efforts.

The culprits behind a double chin tend to be these diet- and exercise-resistant fat cells, and as a result, even the fittest of individuals with a strict diet regimen may have stubborn pockets of fat, such as that under the chin. Thus, while Kybella® is not recommended as a weight loss remedy, it is effective on anyone who would like to reduce the size of their submental fat, regardless of whether it is caused by genetics, lingering forms of weight fluctuation, aging, or a combination of factors.

Once injected into carefully selected points under the chin, Kybella® works to destroy the fat cells by triggering a rupturing in their membranes. The injectable has shown a lot of promise in being an effective and long-term solution to improving the appearance of a double chin, and maintenance treatment sessions after the prescribed courses is not expected.

While a single Kybella® treatment session can include up to 50 injections, the entire thing typically lasts just 15 minutes, and can be performed with local or topical anesthesia. After a treatment session, most patients can resume normal activities.

Patients typically require two to four Kybella® treatment sessions (each spaced out over intervals of at least a month) to achieve their desired results, which can vary depending on the extent of both the double chin and the desired reduction. No single patient can receive more than six Kybella® treatment sessions in total.

Many patients have noticed visible improvement in the appearance of their chin fat soon after their very first Kybella® treatment session. About a month after a Kybella® session, most patients have experienced definite fat reduction and even some slight skin tightening effects in the treated area. The effects of Kybella® can continue to improve over the following three to five months.

Kybella® has an excellent record of both effectiveness and safety when performed by a skilled injector. Any injection-related side effects, such as bruising, swelling, or numbness, are temporary and usually resolve on their own in the days following treatment.

Dr. Levin is a board-certified dermatologist with extensive experience administering injectable treatments. To learn more about Kybella® or other dermatological treatments that may be suitable for you, request a consultation by contacting South Jersey Skin Care & Laser Center online or by phone at (856) 810-9888.