It could turn out to be the next Botox. The US Food and Drug Administration has approved an injection designed specifically to get rid of unsightly double chins.
The drug, called Kybella, is injected into the fat below the chin and destroys the fat cells.
But authorities also warned that Kybella can also kill skin cells if inadvertently injected into the skin. And they cautioned that it is only approved for the treatment of fat occurring below the chin, and it is not known if it is safe or effective for treatment outside of this area.
Kybella is a synthetic form of deoxycholic acid, a molecule that occurs naturally in the body to help destroy fat. A full course of treatment may take 6 months and patients may get up to 50 injections in a single sitting. However, right now the only alternative is surgery. The injections are not painless—the most common side effects in the clinical trials were bruising, pain, numbness and swelling. But there were also more serious problems like trouble swallowing, although it didn’t last long.
It will be available commercially in the U.S. in June – no word on when that will happen here.