Groundbreaking treatment dissolves double chins

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Have a double chin? You may not have to live with it anymore. A groundbreaking new treatment is now melting the fat away.

Kybella is a series of injections in the chin. Each session takes about ten minutes, spaced a month apart for six months maximum.

Debra Bonaparte decided to try it, now that she has a milestone birthday on the horizon.

“It made me start to feel my age,” says Bonaparte, who was a plus-size model throughout her 20’s. “I like to think mentally, I always say I’m 29 and counting backwards, so being 40 this coming year I wanted to make sure I keep my youthful appearance going.”

Dr. Joe Niamtu explains how Kybella works. “If you’d imagine that the fat is a bunch of little water balloons, the Kybella breaks the balloon and the fat leaks out and the body absorbs that.”

Bonaparte says she noticed a difference after her first treatment. “My husband recently was like, ‘Oh wow, I really notice especially from the frontal view that this little area my little gobbler is not there or is not as pronounced as it was.’”

Dr. Niamtu says typically it takes two to four sessions to see results. It is not 100 percent pain-free.

“About midway there was a little bit of burning,” Bonaparte describes.

Dr. Niamtu says other side effects can include bruising, numbing and swelling for a couple days, but Kybella is a good alternative to liposuction or a facelift.

“Since the fat cells are destroyed, alright, it’s permanent. In other words, those fat cells will never come back. Now if a patient gained a lot of weight, the other fat cells could increase, but this is a permanent treatment.”

He adds, “It’s not a miracle drug, but I predict you’ll see this being used on love handles and probably everywhere else on the body.”

Bonaparte is hopeful Kybella is the beginning of a new wave in cosmetic procedures, and she’s already pleased with her change.

Dr. Niamtu says Kybella is not suitable for patients with excess skin. In those cases, Kybella would just dissolve the fat and cause more sagging. It just hit the market, so there is not much known on how safe it is for patients under age 18.  Kybella costs about $1,000 a session.

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