The Asian "Love Band" operation is a new procedure designed to mimic the youthful fullness that occurs naturally in the skin just below the lower lashes. It is said to be popular with Asian entertainers. The operation also goes by the name "Youthlites."
The muscle responsible for closing the eyelids during blinking is called the orbicularis muscle. During youth, the orbicularis muscle is highly developed and fuller, especially with smiling (an "orbicularis roll").
As with most muscles around the eye, thinning and stretching occurs over time and much of its fullness is lost beginning in the late twenties.
Interesting, many younger Occidental patients consider this fullness to be a flaw and request surgical thinning of the muscle, an ill-advised procedure that when performed can actually leave the lids looking older and lead to eyelid stability problems in later years.
The Love Band operation is also felt by some to make the eye look larger and more open, an optical illusion generated by dividing the lid into two visible parts and similar to the effect produced by "double eyelid" surgery in the upper lids.
Augmentation: A 0.5 cm flat strip of Alloderm ® (decellularized tissue matrix) or Gortex is inserted under the skin surface through two small incisions that leave behind tiny scars.
Healing is rapid with sutures removed after several days.
The Alloderm graft acts as a scaffolding or matrix into which the patient's own tissue can grow. The added volume serves as an acceptable replication of a natural orbicularis roll and is said to make the eyes look younger and brighter, especially when smiling.
For patients reluctant to undergo surgery, hyaluronic acid tissue filler can be injected through the skin just beneath the lower lashes to achieve a similar (but less even and, of course, temporary) result.
Reduction: In those patients who desire the opposite effect of Love Band augmentation, i.e., thinning of a full orbicularis roll, sequential injections of Botox or Dysport can lead to eventual muscle shrinkage and are much safer than surgical excision.