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In the past, if you wanted to remove stomach fat, there were no non-surgical options. You would need to book an appointment with a plastic surgeon for invasive liposuction and spend weeks in recovery. Today, with modern dermatological treatments, Dr. Michele Green is able improve the appearance of belly fat and love handles without the need for any plastic surgery or downtime. Thanks to the advent of Kybella, fat cells on various areas of the body can be dissolved easily and effectively. Dr. Green was one of the first dermatologists in NYC to inject Kybella in her discreet, private, New York dermatology office.

Classically, Kybella has been used to remove the “double chin” and produce a more defined jawline. Kybella is the only FDA-approved injectable treatment used to eliminate submental fat or double chin. In recent years, Kybella has become increasingly due to its effectiveness in improving the jawline when weight loss and exercise are not working. Many patients have stubborn areas of fat that do not respond to traditional diet and exercise. The active ingredient in Kybella is deoxycholic acid, a naturally occurring compound found in your body that aids in the breakdown of fat. When kybella is injected into the fat bulge, it destroys the fat cells. Once these fat cells are destroyed, these cells can no longer store or accumulate fat. This fat dissolving procedure leads to permanent fat cell destruction.

Kybella’s unique active ingredient, deoxycholic acid, has revolutionized body contouring. With its success in treating the submental area and dissolving the double chin, the use of Kybella injections has broadened to remove excess fat deposits in other treatment areas, such as the jowls, arms, bra fat (brabella), knees, and upper and lower abdomen. Kybella injections have become extremely popular in removing excess body fat since there is no recovery time and the injectable treatment takes only a few minutes. With over 25 years of experience in cosmetic injectable treatments, such as Botox, Juvederm, Sculptra, and Restylane, Dr. Green will help provide you with the very best treatment plan today.

Can Kybella be used on the stomach?

Kybella is only FDA-approved to treat moderate to severe submental fat and any other area of the body is considered an “off-label” usage of this injection to eliminate body fat. However, Kybella has been successfully used in other parts of the body, such as with lipomas (pockets of fat) or fat by the armpits (bra fat, often called “brabella”), knee fat, and other discreet areas. In addition, there are other effective, non-invasive, and FDA-approved alternatives for removing stomach fat such as CoolSculpting and VelaShape.

What does Kybella feel like?

Most patients who do the fat dissolving kybella treatment are numbed with a topical anesthetic before the procedure to minimize any temporary discomfort. Patients often experience a burning sensation and have some swelling and/or soreness in the area afterward. An ice pack or a cold compress will be applied to the area to provide relief.

Kybella is not painful and non-invasive and very few risks as compared to invasive plastic surgery like liposuction. Liposuction is a major surgery which can result in bleeding, a reaction to the anesthesia, and skin laxity. These concerns are not applicable to Kybella. Kybella injections do not require anesthesia, the results are gradual so the skin doesn’t sag, and no incisions are made on the skin. In fact, many patients notice that there is some skin tightening as a result of the Kybella injections.

How many vials of Kybella for the stomach?

To treat submental fat, two vials are typically needed per treatment with 3 to 4 sessions to obtain optimal results. Most patients see results in 2 to 4 treatment sessions but up to 6 treatment sessions may be needed for a larger neck. Compared to the chin, the abdomen is a much larger area that stores substantially more fat.  The number of vials of Kybella needed for the stomach area will depend on the size of the fat bulge and vary from individual person. If there is a substantial amount of abdominal fat, some patients may prefer CoolSculpting treatments.

SG 48F 3 Months Before and After Coolsculpting Advantage x1 Lower Abdomen Petite x2 Flanks PROFILE R MGWatermark

CoolSculpting for Abs and Flanks – 3 months

How quickly does Kybella work on the stomach?

Few dermatologists and medical practitioners have used Kybella to treat the abdominal area, so there is insufficient data as to how quickly Kybella works on the stomach. Most patients who have done Kybella on other aspects of their body typically notice a difference after 3 months. The results will vary from individual to individual, depending on the amount of fat you have.

Dr. Michele Green has been injecting Kybella since it was first FDA approved to dissolve fat cells as a painless treatment to permanently dissolve fat cells. Although Kybella was originally designed for use in the submental area to dissolve the “double chin,” Dr. Green successfully uses Kybella treatment to dissolve fat cells in other areas of the body such as the abdomen, buttocks, and bra area to achieve the ultimate nonsurgical body contouring. With over 25 years of experience, Dr. Green has been consistently voted as one of the best cosmetic dermatologists in New York by Castle Connolly, Super Doctors, and New York Magazine. If you are interested in facial contouring and melting away your double chin, Dr. Green is here to help and can help recommend the best option to help you get the results you want, whether it be Kybella, CoolSculpting, VelaShape, or a combination of procedures.

How long do Kybella side effects last?

The most common side effects for Kybella include swelling, redness, numbness, slight bruising, and mild pain. The downtime is usually 1-3 days but the side effects can last for up to a week. Other more serious side effects that require medical attention include trouble eating and swallowing, severe bruising, infection, and/or muscle weakness.

To minimize the side effects, there are a few steps you can take beforehand. You should not take Aspirin, Aspirin-containing products, blood thinners like Coumadin, Ibuprofen, Aleve, Motrin, and supplements like Multivitamins and Vitamin E, for 1-2 weeks before your procedure. These medications can lead to bleeding and bruising. You can also start taking Arnika or Bromelain pills 3-4 days before your treatment. Arnika is an herbal supplement and will help reduce pain and swelling. Bromelain pills also deal with inflammation and helps reduce any swelling you may have after the procedure. If you have any concerns or questions, always reach out to your healthcare provider.

DC 36 coolmini underchin 4m RIGHT MGWatermark

CoolMini for chin area, 4 months

Kybella and the double chin

Kybella was first FDA approved to treat the fat cells in the double chin. The fat dissolving properties of Kybella as an injectable treatment to refine the jawline, made Kybella one of the most popular cosmetic treatments at the office of Dr. Michele Green in NYC. Non-surgical body contouring has soared in popularity over the last decade since patients do not want the recovery time associated with surgical procedures. If the amount of fat in the neck area is large, Dr. Green may recommend CoolSculpting with the CoolMini applicator to ‘debulk’ the neck fat first and wait several months to remove the remaining fat cells with Kybella injections. In addition, many patients combine Kybella injections with Thermage laser treatment for skin tightening. By combining these two non-surgical treatments, you can reduce the fat cells in the treatment area and tighten the skin at the same time.

What are my other options to get rid of stomach fat?


CoolSculpting is an FDA cleared treatment that is the gold standard for non-invasive body contouring. Its use has increased by 823 percent since CoolSculpting was FDA approved in 2010. CoolSculpting is a procedure designed for fat reduction and which reduces the fat cells in any treatment area by 25 percent. Since fat cells freeze at higher temperatures, CoolSculpting targets just the fat cells, which your body then excretes through its own natural metabolic process. The process is quick, easy, and painless. Most patients can work on their laptop or take a nap during the procedure. Clinical trials show that repeat sessions can yield even greater results with up to a 40 percent decrease in fat cells.

In addition, CoolSculpting has few side effects and no downtime. This means you can resume your normal daily activities as soon as you’re done with your procedure. Minor numbness and swelling are typical but should subside soon afterward. You can also treat multiple areas during the same day. Many patents elect to have several areas of the body, such as the stomach and flanks, treated on the same day.


VelaShape is an FDA-approved non-invasive body contouring treatment that uses infrared light (IR) and radiofrequency (RF) to shrink fat cells and tighten the skin. RF and IR is combined with vacuum suction and deep-tissue massage to deep heat the fat cells and underlying collagen fibers. This causes your body to regenerate new elastin and collagen, reducing cellulite and giving your skin a more youthful appearance.

Similar to CoolSculpting, VelaShape has no downtime nor does it have side effects. It is also easy, painless, and quick. Most patients will need 5 to 6 treatments scheduled approximately two weeks apart. Like all body contouring procedures, patients will need to maintain a healthy diet and exercise regime. If you gain a substantial amount of weight, the remaining fat cells may expand and take up more room in the previous treatment area.


How do I get started with Kybella or other non-surgical fat reduction options?

If you are frustrated with excess fat, that despite diet and exercise, you cannot reduce, then Kybella injections may be the best treatment for you. Dr. Michele Green is an expert in non-invasive cosmetic treatments such as Botox injections, dermal fillers including Juvederm, Sculptra, CoolSculpting, Kybella, Microneedling, chemical peels, Fraxel, Thermage and other cosmetic procedures. With over 25 years of experience in cosmetic dermatology in NYC, Dr. Green is consistently voted as one of the best dermatologists in New York by Castle Connolly, New York Magazine, and Super Doctors. To schedule an appointment and to learn more about non-surgical fat reduction options and other top body contouring treatments, contact us online, or call us at 212 535 3088 to schedule a consultation.

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