Facial Implants Overview
If your face seems out of proportion or if you’re unsatisfied with facial feature definition, facial implants from MedStar Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery may be able to help. Using surgically implanted materials, facial implants can improve and enhance facial contours. They can help strengthen a jawline or bring the chin or cheekbones into balance with the rest of the face.
Facial implants offered at MedStar Health include:
- Cheek implants can restore a youthful appearance or fill out a sunken face. These implants come in a variety of sizes and shapes and can be placed directly on or below the cheekbone to achieve an individualized result.
- Chin implants can reshape and enhance a small, recessed, or misshapen chin. Chin surgery is frequently recommended when having nose surgery in order to achieve facial proportion.
- Mandible (lower jaw) implants can add definition to the jaw, making it distinct from the neck. Jaw implants are frequently done in combination with a chin implant, especially with men.
Planning and Recovery
What to Expect
When you discuss your procedure with your surgeon, be certain that you clearly express your expectations. He or she will help you determine what is possible to achieve. It may be helpful to provide your surgeon with photos of people who have facial features similar to those you would like to have. Be sure you understand the details of the proposed surgery, including the cost and what to expect during your recovery. During your consultation, your surgeon can take a 3-D image of your face to give you an idea of the anticipated result.
The doctor will give you specific instructions to prepare for the procedure, including guidelines on eating and drinking, smoking, and taking and avoiding certain vitamins and medications. Carefully following these instructions will help your surgery and your recovery proceed more smoothly.
In most cases, you will receive general anesthesia for the procedure.
- Cheek augmentation surgery usually requires about 60 to 90 minutes. When cheek implants are being placed in conjunction with another cosmetic procedure, such as a facelift, brow lift, or eyelid surgery, the implants may be inserted through the incisions made for those procedures. Otherwise, an incision will be made either inside your upper lip or your lower eyelid. Your surgeon will form a pocket for the implant, insert it, and secure it into place so that it doesn’t move.
- Chin augmentation surgery can take anywhere from 30 minutes to one hour. With a short incision under the chin or inside your mouth, your surgeon will place a chin implant directly on the bone.
- Jaw augmentation surgery usually takes about one to two hours. Internal incisions are made on each side of the lower lip to create a pocket into which the lower-jaw implant can be inserted. Dissolving sutures are used to close the incisions. A small puncture incision is made under the jaw to place the screws that secure the implant and keep it from moving.
Recovery After Surgery
After surgery, you will be provided with instructions about post-operative care. These may include dietary restrictions as well as limitations to your activities.
- After cheek surgery, a dressing may be applied to minimize discomfort and swelling. Your ability to move your mouth and lips may be diminished temporarily. Stitches used to close the incisions inside your mouth usually dissolve within about 10 days.
- After chin surgery, your chin will be taped to minimize swelling and discomfort. Sutures in the skin will be removed in seven to 10 days. If an intraoral incision is used, the sutures will dissolve.
- After jaw surgery, swelling may be significant, usually peaking 24 to 48 hours afterward. Although most significant swelling will subside over a few days, prolonged mild swelling may prevent your final facial contour from becoming apparent for several months. Your ability to smile, talk, or move your mouth in any way may be limited for several days to weeks following surgery. Your surgeon will instruct you about dental and oral hygiene during recovery.
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Frequently Asked Questions
You may be a good candidate if:
As with any surgery, facial implant surgery poses some risks. These risks include:
The costs for facial implants vary based on the type and your specific needs. When you come in for your consultation visit, we’ll be better able to discuss fees in detail with you. Our staff will also review the financing options available.