Latisse: A Breakthrough Product for Eyelashes



Allergan, the company that develops Botox and Juvederm, rolled out a new product named “Latisse” just last year.  Approved by the FDA, Latisse is the first prescription treatment for eyelash hypotrichosis.  That’s a complicated word, I know, but it’s otherwise known as “not enough” or “inadequate eyelashes”.


The chemical component of Latisse, bimatoprost ophthalmic solution, was originally developed to be put in the eye as an eyedrop to treat glaucoma, and it is still also used for that purpose.  Interestingly enough, patients who were using the drops for glaucoma noticed an unexpected side effect: their eyelashes would grow longer, darker and thicker than before the treatment.  As a result of this observation, further testing and research was done, ultimately resulting in the development of Latisse.


Latisse affects the growth, or anagen phase, of the eyelash hair cycle by increasing both the length of the phase and the number of hairs.  When Latisse is applied to the upper eyelid once every day, effects like hair growth come gradually.  In clinical trials, Latisse users saw significant improvement in 8 weeks.  At week 16, statistics show 25% increase in eyelash length, 106% increase in eyelash thickness and 18% increase in eyelash darkness.


Latisse is safe when used as directed, but there are some restrictions.  Latisse should not be used if the person is allergic to eye drops or has been diagnosed with eye pressure problems such as glaucoma.  The most common side effects are eye itching or redness reported in about 4% of users.Using Latisse is relatively easy.  First, any eye makeup and contact lenses must be removed, preferably before bedtime.  Second, one drop of Latisse is placed on an applicator which comes included with the prescription. This applicator is then drawn across the upper eyelid margin at the base of the eyelashes.


Since Latisse is an FDA-approved prescription medication, you will need to consult a doctor (like me) to discuss the risks versus benefits.  Most pharmacies will not actually be carrying such a specialized product.  No need to worry, though.  At Maine Laser Skin Care, we will be dispensing the medication, and Latisse will not be covered by insurance prescription plans.


At this point, we are taking names of patients who are interested in Latisse and will be scheduling consultations when it is officially available, which will be soon.  We will also be having more information concerning Latisse on our website shortly.  Give Becky Gilbert a call at (207) 873-2158 to get on the Latisse consult waiting list.  Meanwhile, if you have any other questions concerning this article and any other skin issues, please leave a comment here on this blog, call our office directly or email through our website.

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