Why Kybella Didn’t Work For You – Here’s What Will!

Dr.Qazi is applying the Kybella treatment to a patient for whom it hadn't worked before

Many cosmetic procedures promise jaw-dropping results with little to no downtime. However, the reality is that not all procedures work on everyone. Recently, Dr. Qazi has received calls from patients who are complaining that Kybella didn’t work on them. There are several factors which can explain why Kybella may not work for certain patients. Read on to learn more about Kybella and other double chin treatment alternatives. 

What Is Kybella?

Kybella is the brand name for deoxycholic acid, which is a type of acid normally found in the stomach. Kybella was FDA approved back in 2015 and is a popular alternative to liposuction. Because deoxycholic acid is designed to break down fat in the stomach, this synthetic version can be highly effective for breaking down submental fat pockets. 

Most Kybella treatments last around 30 minutes. The treatment area will be numbed first using ice and a topical numbing cream. Then the cosmetic physician will place 20 to 50 needles into your neck in a grid-like pattern to deliver the acid to your fat pockets. Most procedures require between 1 and 3 vials of Kybella. 

Does Kybella Work? 

Kybella provides amazing results for certain patients who are ideal candidates for the procedure. However, Kybella may not work for some patients. If a double chin is on the larger side or if it is caused by loose skin rather than fat, then Kybella will not be effective.

Patients may also require multiple sessions to see their desired results; on average, between 2 and 4 sessions are necessary for optimal chin reduction. It is completely normal for patients to see no change after their first round of injections; usually, by the second or third session, results will begin to show. Kybella also may not work if patients do not properly follow all the aftercare instructions. 

If you have concerns that Kybella didn’t work on you, schedule a consultation at Qazi Cosmetic Clinic to learn how you can get your desired results. In some cases, Kybella may not work properly if it is performed by an inexperienced cosmetic physician. The procedure is highly technical and works best when performed by a board-certified, experienced doctor. 

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    Why Kybella Didn’t Work For You

    There are a variety of reasons why Kybella didn’t work on you. In some cases, cosmetic procedures may not work properly if you are not an ideal candidate. If this is the case, you should consider getting a different procedure, rather than insisting on Kybella, which may or may not work for you. 

    Here are the top 5 reasons why Kybella may not have worked on you: 

    1. The Number of Treatments
    2. Lack of Proper Aftercare
    3. Not Enough Downtime Between Sessions
    4. You May Not Be a Good Candidate For Kybella
    5. Sometimes You Need To Wait Longer To See Results

    1. The Number of Treatments

    Kybella normally takes between 2 and 4 treatments to see results. Many patients report that they noticed no change after their first session, but there was a dramatic improvement after the second session. If you think that Kybella didn’t work on you after only one session, you may just need to get one more session. Patients often see better results after the second or third session. 

    2. Lack of Proper Aftercare

    When you get a procedure, no matter how non-invasive, it is very important to follow all aftercare instructions, no matter how small. After Kybella, it is very important that you avoid strenuous activity, don’t touch the treatment area, avoid taking aspirin, keep the treated area clean to avoid infections, do not have any more treatments until you are fully healed, and avoid wearing makeup for the first 24 hours. Failure to properly follow all aftercare instructions may harm your results. 

    3. Not Enough Downtime Between Session

    Most patients experience swelling that lasts for about a month after a Kybella treatment. However, some patients experience minimal or no swelling, which clears up within 2 weeks. Because their swelling is already gone, some patients immediately want to do another round of Kybella only 2 weeks after the first one. This is not recommended. Treatments should be spaced 4 to 6 weeks apart. Getting a second session too soon after the first one can cause adverse results and side effects. 

    4. You May Not Be a Good Candidate For Kybella

    Sadly, not everyone is a good candidate for all cosmetic procedures. Kybella only works on patients who have small pockets of soft fat under their chin. If your double chin is on the larger side, Kybella may not be enough to transform your profile. In this case, liposuction may provide you with better results. It is also possible for patients to have a type of fat under their chin which does not respond to Kybella. When you have your consultation, Dr. Qazi will be able to determine if you are a good candidate for Kybella. 

    5. Sometimes You Need To Wait Longer To See Results

    If you have had 2-3 sessions of Kybella and you’re thinking “oh no, it didn’t work on me,” it may be that you just need to wait longer. Some patients experience several weeks of swelling under the chin. They may assume that just because they don’t see immediate results,  Kybella didn’t work on them. The truth is that you may just need to wait longer for your results to manifest. In some cases, it can take up to 7 weeks for your swelling to completely subside. 

    Dr. Qazi shows the results achieved by a patient after applying the Kybella treatment

    How Long Until I See Results With Kybella? Your Recovery Timeline

    Each body is a little different, so there is no “one size fits all” for recovery timelines. For example, the woman behind the blog You Found Sarah tried Kybella and reported that she experienced 5 weeks of pain, tightness, swelling, and hard masses. Other patients have experienced swelling that only lasted for 1 to 2 weeks.

    Lindsey Hunter Lopez, who discussed her experience with Kybella in an article for The Atlantic, reported little bruising and swelling after the first session. However, she did not see results until after the second round, which took 2 weeks to fully manifest.

    Generally, you should plan for at least a week of taking it easy and staying home. Your neck may be sore and swollen for up to 7 or 8 weeks. Before you say “Kybella didn’t work,” make sure that it has been at least 7 weeks since the procedure. If you have gone through the necessary number of sessions and the recommended recovery time and still don’t see results, then it is safe to say “Kybella didn’t work.” At this point, you are safe to look into other options for reducing the size of your chin.

    Most patients typically see their final results only when the swelling has gone down. Swelling is a necessary part of the procedure because it represents the liquidated fat cells pooling in the chin. Over time, your body will clear away the damaged fat cells, but it can take different lengths of time in different people. 

    The best way to speed up your recovery is to manage the swelling.

    5 ways to handle swelling after Kybella

    1. Apply a cold compress to your chin. One of the easiest ways to do this is to wrap ice packs against your chin with an ace bandage going all the way around your head. 
    2. Use a warm compress in the first few days after your injections. 
    3. Wear a chin strap for extra support and compression.
    4. Take over-the-counter antihistamines or pain killers to manage discomfort and reduce swelling. 
    5. Wait until all swelling has subsided before you get another session.

    Most patients who try Kybella report that they have achieved their desired results after 12 weeks or 2 sessions. Your results will be permanent and final after 6 months. For patients who saw results with Kybella, a 40% reduction in chin size is what can be expected after 2 to 4 treatments. 

    Once your results are final, they can be permanent. Kybella works because it destroys fat cells in the chin; once those cells are destroyed, they will not come back unless you gain significant amounts of weight. 

    The Kybella treatment was effective for one patient thanks to the professionalism of Dr. Qazi

    Kybella Didn’t Work – What Will?

    If Kybella didn’t work for you, your best option is liposuction. Liposuction is considered tried and true among cosmetic physicians; it is more precise than Kybella and guarantees results with a single session. Because liposuction is a surgical procedure, some patients steer clear of it, but it can actually work significantly better than Kybella. 

    Here are 5 reasons why liposuction is a better option than Kybella:

    1. It Works

    There are many patients who report that Kybella didn’t work; it’s true that Kybella may or may not be effective for all patients. However, liposuction works on all patients every time. There is no guesswork, no repeated sessions, and no risk of wasting money on an ineffective procedure. 

    2. Lipo Can Give You Better Results.

    Not only does lipo work better than Kybella, it can also correct a wider range of cosmetic concerns. If you combine liposuction with a neck lift, you could kiss your double chin and your loose skin goodbye all in one go. Liposuction can also create a greater transformation compared to Kybella

    3. Can Be More Affordable

    Normally, surgical procedures are the pricier option compared to non-surgical alternatives. However, when you consider that Kybella can take multiple procedures, liposuction may end up being cheaper. When you get lipo, you will at least know what you are getting. 

    4. Length of the Recovery

    Some patients see their swelling go down 2 weeks after a Kybella treatment; some patients have to deal with the discomfort for 5 to 8 weeks. No one wants to spend 2 months sitting at home, avoiding social outings, and wrapping yourself in a scarf to hide your chin. Surprisingly, your recovery for liposuction may be shorter than the recovery for Kybella. After lipo, patients can go back to work 3 to 5 days after the procedure. You can return to normal activities including exercise 

    5. Number of Sessions

    Kybella only works after multiple sessions, and it is common for patients to see no change after their first appointment. For patients who want one-and-done results, liposuction might be the way to go. Unlike Kybella, lipo gives you results after a safe, one-time surgery; there is no waiting around or throwing more money away on a procedure that might not even do anything. 

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      What You Need To Know About Liposuction and MicroLipo

      Traditional lipo and MicroLipo are the best alternatives to Kybella because they will give you amazing results in a single surgery. All forms of liposuction involve a surgeon making a small incision in the treatment area, then inserting a small cannula to vacuum out the fat cells. Because the fat cells are removed entirely, your results will be permanent, unless you gain weight or become pregnant. 

      Traditional Lipo vs. MicroLipo

      MicroLipo is exactly what it sounds like: a form of liposuction that uses a smaller cannula and targets small areas of the body. MicroLipo is ideal for the chin, as well as the legs, back, chest, and arms. Because MicroLipo uses smaller incisions, it will have less risk of scarring. Whether you will need traditional lipo or MicroLipo depends on the size of your chin. While MicroLipo is ideal for quick, small adjustments, liposuction can provide a greater transformation. 

      It can also be performed without general anesthesia in certain cases. Depending on your needs, Dr. Qazi may be able to perform MicroLipo in the office with local anesthesia. 

      Be Aware of Side Effects

      Both Kybella and lipo come with risks and side effects. Before you decide which procedure you are interested in, make sure you understand the potential complications. 

      Lipo risks and side effects:

      • Uneven shape
      • Numbness and changes to sensations
      • Infection
      • Adverse reaction to anesthesia 
      • Fluid accumulation
      • Infection 

      Kybella risks and side effects

      • Severe or extended swelling
      • Bruising and numbness
      • Hard spots near injection sites
      • Pain, numbness, or itching
      • Headache and nausea
      • Necrosis
      • Infection
      • Trouble swallowing
      • Bruising that isn’t healing

      Kybella Didn’t Work For You, What Now?

      It can be hit or miss sometimes. Whether you are considering Kybella or have already gotten it, schedule a consultation at Qazi Cosmetic Clinic. Dr. Qazi can answer all your questions about Kybella and other chin reducing alternatives. He can also help determine if you are a good candidate and if Kybella will work for you. If you have already tried Kybella and it didn’t work, Dr. Qazi may recommend liposuction or MicroLipo to help you achieve your aesthetic goals. 

      By: Dr. Nadir Qazi

      Dr. Nadir Qazi is a board certified physician specializing in minimally invasive cosmetic procedures. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery and an instructor for advanced injections and laser techniques.

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