Why is Kybella so expensive?

I've read that Kybella will cost just as much, and probably even more than liposuction. The only benefit of Kybella is privacy, not having to wear that garment for 1 week, and advertise to the whole world you got lipo. I'm pretty sure, whatever the results, it will never be as good as lipo. I don't see where the cost is coming from, is supposed to be lower than lipo since is only injections, and after being hyped so much, you're just basically paying for the doctor's degree, and vacations.

Doctor Answers 57

Kybella Cost

Yes, the cost-of-good (price per vial) set by the company is exorbitant, to put it mildly. Yes, liposuction (between $1500-4500, depending on the provider and area of the country) remains a phenomenal treatment for submental fat. Yes, the cost of the Kybella procedure will likely drop precipitously in the not-too-distant future as a result of poor demand due to cost.


Austin Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Pricing for Kybella

Kybella was recently approved by the FDA for the treatment of excessive submental fat. Currently, it is the only product on the market with this indication. The company has set a high price point initially to offset the cost of extensive testing to ensure safety and efficacy of the product. Depending on demand, it is possible that the price will be lowered in the future.

Joshua L. Fox, MD
Long Island Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Kybella and Cost

Kybella is a very expensive procedure but works extremely well.  Allergan bought the company that developed Kybella and now increased the price to market it.  Since there is no direct competition they can set the price.  It may take quite a while before the price comes down.  The price may drop in the future if there is a similar product. I often combine Kybella with Thermage to treat the neck area and tighten the skin laxity at the same time. If you have a large area of submental fat you can have the Cool-mini performed by Coolsculpting and this may be less expensive for you. I often use several different modalities to treat my patients in the neck. I find that this combination yields the best results in my office.  Best, Dr. Green

Michele S. Green, MD
New York Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 76 reviews

Kybella Expense

Kybella is expensive for two reasons. First, it is a new treatment, and the only non-invasive injectable approved for the treatment of submental fullness. Second, the company which developed Kybella is the sole patent holder and wants to recoup costs incurred during the development and approval process. Until the patent runs out and other companies can develop competing alternatives, Kybella will, unfortunately, continue to be expensive.

Suzanne M. Quardt, MD
Palm Springs Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Kybella is Excellent for Small Double Chins

Kybella is an excellent alternative for small double chins.  Liposuction or Smart Lipo would entail more time, costs, and recovery.  One or two vials of Kybella can be injected at one sitting and no surgery is required.
My experience is very positive.  I do agree if several treatments will be necessary, it might be better to do a formal Smart Lipo to the chin.

Keith Denkler, MD
Marin Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Kybella Avoids Surgery for Those who will Avoid Surgery at Any Cost!

Kybella was developed by Kythera and recently purchased by Allergan.  It was an expensive purchase and some of that has been passed on to the final cost.  

A reason that Allergan paid dearly is because the clinical trials involved thousands of patients.  Many of the important questions (how much to be effective, how much to stay safe) were worked out pretty thoroughly in the expensive clinical trials.  

Most patients need 3- 4 treatments, one month apart.  It is true that liposuction of the neck is less money than most Kybella series.  

I offer both options, and let patients choose.  Some patients simply do not want to have a short (30 minute) outpatient procedure, and now they have a safe and effective choice.  

Kybella (Belkyra)

Kybella (Belkyra in Canada) is unfortunately expensive due to the actual cost of the medication itself. Given there is no competing product on the market, the price is unlikely to decrease in the near future. All the best.  

Samuel Hetz, MSc, MD
Ottawa Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Kybella cost

Kybella is a one of a kind treatment in that it is safe, effective, has little to no downtime, tightens the skin in the treated area and delivers permanent results (as long as you don't gain a lot of weight)! That it itself is pretty exciting! It's liposuction in a syringe. Cost is a factor because it takes, on average, $80 million to get a drug approved by the FDA! So the cost is passed on to the patients. It also takes 3-6 treatments for optimal results. However, considering what it can deliver, it may be worth the cost and the convenience. It is best to see an expert in facial aesthetics such a board-certified dermatologist for a consultation to determine is right for you and what the cost will be.

Peterson Pierre, MD
Thousand Oaks Dermatologist

Non-invasive

It has less downtime, costs more because it is still under patent and new, and works so well.  It is about 1200 per treatment.  You will need at least 2-3 treatments so I think it is not as expensive since it is spread out.  you may need less or more.  Good luck. Dr. Sam

Samer Muala, MD
Phoenix Family Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Not an Inexpensive Treatment

I agree that Kybella is not an inexpensive treatment.  However, it's dependent on how many vials you would need.  If you only need 1-3 vials, I think the cost is very reasonable.  Where I don't think it's a good idea is if you have a larger amount of submental fat that needs to be removed.  If the area is larger, then liposuction is a much better idea.  Kybella is not great for larger necks. I typically only recommend Kybella if the area that needs to be treated is small.  Plus liposuction is still a surgical procedure which requires pain medication and tumescent anesthesia.  Kybella is a very quick office procedure that can have minimal downtime.

William Kwan, MD, FAAD
San Francisco Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.