Awake Lip Lift

An awake lip lift refers to the type of anesthesia used during the plastic surgery, namely the use of a local anesthesia instead of general anesthesia. The surgical technique utilized for the actual lip lift varies.

Awake Lip Lift Overview - Everything You Need to Know

The Skinny

Awake Lip Lift
avg. recovery
10 weeks
permanence
Is permanent
Type
Surgical Procedure
surgical
Yes
cost
$2000 - $5000

About the Procedure

Last Updated: 09.25.2021

An awake lip lift refers to general anesthesia not being used during the lip lift surgery. Depending on the candidate, anesthesiologist, and plastic surgeon, one of many lip lift surgery techniques can be utilized during an awake lip lift. There are multiple variations of anesthesia, however, they can broadly be categorized into general anesthetics versus local anesthetics. General anesthesia is most often an intravenous sedation (IV sedation) in which an anesthesiologist monitors vital signs to ensure a patient is properly sedated. In the awake lip lift, a patient experiences ‘conscious sedation’ or twilight anesthesia with regional anesthesia or local anesthetics. As in traditional lip lift plastic surgeries, the upper lip and lower lip will be altered to create natural appearing results. The ‘awake’ component indicates only local anesthesia will be used. Often, tumescent fluid, which is a combination of epinephrine, local anesthetics like lidocaine, and saline, is used to anesthetize the upper lip, lower lip, and base of the nose. Of note, in injectable lip filler lip lifting techniques, like Juvederm®, Restylane®, or even Botox® injections, only local anesthetics are typically used so there is not an ‘awake’ variation of these cosmetic procedures.

An awake lip lift refers to general anesthesia not being used during the lip lift surgery. Depending on the candidate, anesthesiologist, and plastic surgeon, one of many lip lift surgery techniques can be utilized during an awake lip lift.

Concerns

Awake Lip Lift addresses concerns such as:

Recovery Notes

The recovery time associated with an awake lip lift only differs in the immediate post operative experience. As there is no general anesthesia, and only a local anesthetic is used, patients can expect to feel better sooner while still at the plastic surgery facility. Long-term recovery time, diet modifications, and limitations on certain activities will remain unchanged, and vary by the surgical technique.

Ideal Candidate

The ideal candidate for an awake lip lift has minor signs of aging, and does not require a more traditional lip lift technique for extensive upper lip or lower lip corrections. Older patients and younger patients may both be candidates for an awake lip lift.

Not Recommended For

An awake lip lift is not recommended for candidates with severe signs of aging, or other anatomical considerations that require a longer lip lift surgery time.

Side Effects

Potential side effects from an awake lip lift include discomfort during the procedure, bruising, swelling, bleeding, tightness, numbness, infection, blood clot formation, and poor wound healing.

Pros

  • Less downtime
  • No general anesthesia

Cons

  • Not available for all lip lift surgery techniques
  • Does not reduce recovery time
  • Patient may become uncomfortable during procedure