New treatment promises to melt away double chins
Published Saturday, September 5, 2015 10:38PM EDT
Canadians who worry about the look of their chin will soon have a new beauty treatment available.
Belkyra, branded Kybella in the U.S., is an injectable drug that is said to eliminate submental fat, better known as a double chin.
Set to hit the Canadian market this fall after authorization in July, the drug destroys fat cells under the skin and offers an alternative for those who don’t want to go under the knife.
The treatment was first approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration earlier this year has gained popularity in the U.S. with people of all ages.
Twenty-five-year-old Kimberly Pomerantz was one of these people. She tried the treatment after becoming worried about the look of her double chin that she said runs in her family.
"I don't think I am too young," Pomerantz said. "I can see why it would appeal to all ages."
But the treatment can come with a hefty price tag of up to $3,000.
Despite the cost, Dr. Tina Alster said the drug has been a big seller in the U.S.
“There has been nothing else that has been available that could get rid of this double chin without surgery or liposuction,” the Washington D.C. dermatologist said.
Elaine Cerro was another person drawn to the treatment. A yoga and Pilates instructor, she worried that A double chin aged her and tried to eliminate it through diet and exercise. But when that didn’t work, Cerro decided to participate in a study that tested the drug.
“I went into the trial with two chins and came out with one,” Cerro said.
The results — which can take 20 to 50 injections over multiple 20-minute sessions — have also caught the attention of doctors. Canadian Dr. Shannon Humphrey was impressed with the treatment outcome for some of her patients, but noted that the treatment can come with repercussions.
“The side effects that patients can really count on: some swelling that can last for several days after the injection process -- and even some numbness in the overlying skin,” Humphrey said.
According to Kythera Biopharmaceuticals Inc., the company that owns the double chin treatment, 72 per cent of subjects treated in clinical trials experienced injection site bruising. The most commonly reported reactions in the trials included swelling, pain, and numbness.
With a report by CTV Medical reporter Avis Favaro and producer Elizabeth St. Philip