How do you determine if Kybella or Liposuction are best for you?

Doctor Answers 22

Kybella versus liposuction

Kybella has just been FDA approved only for sub mental fat removal. Most patients have sub-mental AND  sub-platysmal fat deposits present in the neck contributing to the fullness.  Kybella  will require 3-5 treatments over a series of months. Kybella will not improve the excess  skin in the neck, nor address the  platysmal  muscle bands in the neck. It will also not treat the sub-platysmal fat deposits in the neck. It is also very expensive and probably equivalent in price to liposuction in the neck. For many examples of  liposuction in the neck, please see link below

Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 143 reviews

Kybella vs. submental liposuction

For uncomplicated liposuction under the chin (submental  suction lipectomy), we charge $1750. This includes the preoperative appointment, procedure, and all postoperative followups. We have laughing gas available at no additional charge.  The procedure requires a single 4 mm (less than 1/4") incision and takes about 45" to an hour.  You will have to wear a compression garment 24/7 (minus showers) for 2 weeks and 16/7 for an additional 2 weeks. Please read the realself reviews of our practice, as many of our patients have posted pre- and postoperative photos of liposuction under the chin.

Kybella is a very reasonable alternative for those patients who do not wish to undergo liposuction.  However, it requires more treatments, more downtime, and greater expense.  Kybella typically requires 2 to 4 treatments, each with at least 2 weeks of associated social downtime due to bruising, swelling, and redness and typically runs $2000 to $4800.

Ronald Friedman, MD
Plano Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Kybella verus Liposuction

An in person consultation is the best way to determine if you are a candidate for one versus the other.  Generally speaking if there is an excess of skin laxity that cannot be treated with Themage and Kybella, then I recommend these patients for a surgical procedure.  Most of my patients would rather have Kybella since there is no down time and they are able to return to work the same day.  Best, Dr. Green

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

How do you determine if Kybella or Liposuction are best for you?

In nearly any situation that you COULD consider Liposuction for chin/neck fat, you could consider (and SHOULD consider) Kybella (aka deoxycholate) injections.  Injections into the subcutaneous layer of fat will almost always be safer than a scalpel-involving procedure.  Both procedures have risks in the hands of inexperienced professionals.  The Kybella injections are done with a 1/4 inch long needle, and care should be taken to avoid injecting the skin over the carotid artery (which an experienced injector of this medicine would know).  With proper attention to the depth of injection, volume of injection, and spacing of injections, the Kybella injections are capable of giving phenomenally precise sculpted features to the chin and neck, with skin-tightening unmatched by liposuction.

Deborah Kessler Hudak, MD, MHA
Raleigh-Durham Ophthalmologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Kybella or Liposuction?

I appreciate your question.
Without any photos, difficult to comment.

The best way to assess and give true advice would be an in-person exam.
Please see a board-certified plastic surgeon that specializes in aesthetic and restorative plastic surgery.

best of luck!

Dr Schwartz

Jaime S. Schwartz, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 91 reviews

Liposuction versus Kybella

I would state that the ideal candidate for Kybella is:
1)  One who is looking for a minimally invasive approach to reducing the submental fullness or 'double chin'
2)  One who doesn't mind a staged approach, with the possibility of swelling and bruising at each stage (albeit less with each stage).
3)  One is not looking for rapid results.  I would recommend spacing Kybella treatments 6 weeks apart, and plan for 2-6 treatments depending on your starting point and desired end-point
4)  One who has mild to moderate submental fullness and skin laxity

Liposuction is also an option for those who want a single procedure to help them achieve their results and don't mind the potential for a more visible downtime (e.g. wearing compression).  Also, the cost of liposuction will probably be less in most practices compared to a full treatment course of Kybella.

Young R. Cho, MD, PhD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Kybella vs. Liposuction

Kybella will most likely be the better choice, because it is less invasive meaning it's done in the office without any sedation. However, if you are having other procedures done in the O.R. you may opt to having liposuction done while you are having other procedures performed. The results of Kybella and liposuction appear to be very similar with the exception being that Kybella seems to tighten the skin some.

Jeffrey W. Hall, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Kybella vs Liposuction

This is an excellent question. Physicians who have experience with Kybella and experience with liposuction, and hospitals privileges to perform the procedure are really the only ones who can answer that question accurately. 

At the time I am writing this, Kybella is quite new. I think a lot will be learned about who will be the ideal candidate and with time, I imagine the treatment will be perfected.  

Never have I performed liposuction on a patient who wished they would have had CoolSculpting instead. However, our office has performed CoolSculpting on many patients who are very, very happy with their results who would have had more challenges finding time for a liposuction procedure. For instance, a mom can come in to our office and go directly from a CoolSculpting appointment to picking her kids up from school. The convenience of a non-surgical treatment makes it very appealing. But Kybella, like CoolSculpting isn't ideal for everyone. Be sure you are seeing a medical practice with experience. A consultation should never make you feel pressured. Be sure to look at before and after images from the practice showing their results of CoolSculpting and their results from liposuction and allow your physician's practice to help you decide what will be best for you.

Michael Law, MD
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 118 reviews

Kybella vs Liposuction

Kybella is intended for use in submental fullness, sometimes referred to as "double chin." The safe and effective use of Kybella for the treatment of subcutaneous fat outside the submental region has not been established and isnot recommended. For that reason, Kybella would be best for you if you are a healthy adult with submental fullness. You should address your fit with either Kybella or Liposuction by visiting a board certified facial plastic surgeon.

Ross A. Clevens, MD
Melbourne Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 116 reviews


You should consider a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon who has experience with Kybella. The FDA approved the use of Kybella to reduce the submental fat. Patients who are good candidates have little excess skin and fat present beneath the chin

Frank J. Ferraro, MD
Paramus Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 48 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.