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Home/Non-Surgical Cosmetic Procedures/KYBELLA®

One of the most common complaints we hear from patients is dissatisfaction with the appearance of a double chin. In most cases, exercise and dieting will not eliminate the stubborn fat under the chin. For many years, liposuction was the most used procedure to correct submental fullness (the medical term for a double chin) and create a more defined jawline. While liposuction is an undeniably effective treatment, many people are reluctant to undergo an invasive procedure, especially one that is performed in close proximity to delicate facial structures.

KYBELLA® is a new way to correct submental fullness. This treatment delivers dramatic results that look natural and are long-lasting. Best of all, KYBELLA® is a non-invasive treatment that utilizes the body’s natural processes to eliminate fat below the chin. Approved by the FDA in April 2015, San Francisco plastic surgeon Miguel A. Delgado, Jr., MD is excited to offer this treatment to his patients from Marin, Novato, Napa Valley, and surrounding communities.

Procedure What It Does Surgery Recovery Results
Injectable treatment that reduces appearance of a double chin
Minimal to none
Removes under-the-chin fat via suction
7-10 days


KYBELLA® corrects submental fullness by destroying fat cells under the chin. Delivered through a series of injections, KYBELLA® is a synthetic form of deoxycholic acid, a substance found in the human body that helps metabolize dietary fat. Once KYBELLA® is injected it destroys fat cell membranes, causing the cells to release their fatty contents. From here, the body’s natural metabolic processes dispose of the fat.


A KYBELLA® treatment session takes less than 30 minutes at our San Francisco and Novato offices. Our nurse injector, Ariel Kirk, is highly trained at administering injectables for our patients. Under the expert supervision of Dr. Delgado, they will administer between 10 and 20 injections of KYBELLA® beneath the chin at the precise depth where the fat cells exist. Patients typically require between two and four sessions to achieve the desired effect, with treatments spaced at one-month intervals. Patients with only minimal fat beneath the chin may achieve excellent results with just one treatment.

After the treatment, you can resume normal activities right away. While Kybella destroys fat cells within 15 minutes, the results of the treatment won’t be visible until the swelling subsides. The inflammation, which indicates that the body is responding to the treatment, usually lasts for three or four weeks. You may also experience some temporary numbness in the chin and jaw area.


KYBELLA® can be used to eliminate the appearance of a double chin and create a more defined, sculpted jawline. KYBELLA® was specifically designed to treat submental fullness and is only approved for use in this area by the FDA. KYBELLA® should not be used to melt away fat in any other part of the body.


KYBELLA® and neck liposuction can both be used to correct a double chin. Both procedures are relatively safe and very effective in reducing submental fullness. The table below outlines the main differences between the two procedures.

Kybella Kybella Neck Liposuction
Downtime / Recovery Period
Can resume work and normal activities immediately
Will need 2 – 3 days to recover at home before returning to work and normal activities
Not required, but a numbing cream is recommended to minimize discomfort
Twilight anesthesia and/or local anesthesia is required
Can only be used to treat fat beneath the chin
Can be used to treat fat beneath the chin and correct sagging and lines around the neck
Predictability of results
Less predictable than neck liposuction as results won’t be visible until inflammation has subsided
Very predictable results as the doctor can see exactly how much fat has been removed while performing the procedure
Side effects and risks
Swelling and tenderness are normal; there is a risk of nerve injury when administered by a less experienced practitioner
Swelling and tenderness; small risk of infection following liposuction


KYBELLA® is best suited for individuals who have good skin elasticity and a very distinct double chin. Dr. Delgado along with our trained nurse injector, Ariel Kirk, will provide our patients with the best treatments possible. They are trained in the correct administration of KYBELLA® to achieve effective results, while minimizing risk to the patient. Under the supervision of Dr. Delgado our skilled nurse injectors can select the right candidates for KYBELLA® and suggest alternate treatments to those who are not good candidates. If you are interested in improving your appearance by correcting a double chin, we encourage you to contact our San Francisco or Novato office today.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is KYBELLA® safe?

Yes, KYBELLA® is FDA approved and considered a safe and effective treatment for submental fat. Like most medical procedures, there are some potential risks, such as nerve injury. However, the risks can be minimized with proper injection techniques. It is important that you choose an experienced KYBELLA® expert to do the procedure.

How many treatments are necessary?

The total number of treatments will vary from patient to patient. In general, a treatment plan ranges from 2-6 sessions. Multiple injections of KYBELLA® can be given during a single appointment. Treatments should be adequately spaced apart to allow for the body to process the damaged fat cells.

Can KYBELLA® be used in other areas of the body?

No. KYBELLA® is only FDA approved for the treatment of under-the-chin (submental) fat. It should not be used on other areas of the body. If you would like to reduce localized fat in other parts of the body there are both non-invasive (CoolSculpting®) and surgical (liposuction) procedures that are more appropriate.

Does KYBELLA® address severely loose skin and jowls?

No. KYBELLA® addresses the excess fat that contributes to a double chin, but it cannot improve significant sagging skin in the chin and neck area. However, a KYBELLA® treatment can be used in conjunction with a skin tightening procedure. If you have a double chin and severely lax skin, you may wish to consider a surgical procedure to achieve desired effects.

How long will KYBELLA® last?

KYBELLA® destroys fat cells and the effects can be long-lasting. Once these dead fat cells are flushed from the body, they will not return. Most patients can expect to enjoy enduring results, provided they follow a healthy lifestyle and and avoid weight fluctuations. However, every patient is unique and individual results will vary.

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