Who are good candidates for facial implant surgery?
A facial implant can improve your appearance and self-image but it can’t necessarily change your look to meet your ideal. Unlike a facelift, facial implants are not primarily used to make someone younger, but instead to augment deficient portions of the facial skeleton to produce better harmony.
For instance, it is common for a young individual undergoing rhinoplasty to also elect to have the chin brought forward with a chin implant to obtain the best improvement in their profile.
For older individuals, facial implants can be used to help achieve a more youthful appearance by filling out sunken cheeks or enhancing the jawline or chin, two areas that can also lose volume with age. Thus facial implants can be placed in conjunction with a face or necklift to better achieve the desired result.
What is the
day of my facial implant
You will need to begin fasting 8 hours prior to your procedure which means you cannot eat or drink anything at all during this period including chewing gum or water. If you have been instructed to take any medications in the morning this is permitted with a few sips of water.
Facial implant surgery can be done using local anesthesia with sedation or general anesthesia. This depends upon your surgeon and anesthesiologist preference. Surgery time varies depending upon the type of implant but usually takes 1-2 hours. If the incisions are only inside of your mouth (ie chin, cheek, jaw implants) you will likely not have any dressings but if there is an incision under your chin for a chin implant, you will have a small dressing under the chin.
After surgery, you will stay in the recovery suite until you are ready to go home or to our overnight facility.
How do I
my facial implant surgery?
Within 1 month of surgery all patients greater than 50 years old or with medical problems should have a medical evaluation by their physician or a primary care provider. Depending on your health this may require blood tests, an EKG, etc. You will be given a list of medications, vitamins, and supplements to refrain from taking at least two weeks before and after surgery. You should also stop smoking for at least 1 month before and after surgery.
Any facial implant surgery is usually an outpatient procedure so you will need to arrange for someone to drive you home. For your comfort, you may want to bring a hat, sunglasses, or a scarf with you to wear as you are leaving the facility.
It is a very good idea to have someone at home who can help you out for a few days during your recovery. Depending on the type of facial implant, most patients require 1 week off from work so this needs to be arranged as well. Your surgeon will give you a prescription for the medications you will need after surgery so these can be obtained ahead of time.
What is the
for facial implant surgery?
In general, the swelling will progress over 1-2 days but then begin to improve. For cheek and jaw implants the swelling can sometimes be significant. Increasing pain associated with a discrete area of swelling and bruising should be reported to your surgeon immediately.
Cold compress can be applied to help with pain and swelling. If you have sutures inside the mouth, dietary modifications will need to be made and should be discussed with your surgeon. You should also get instructions regarding oral and dental hygiene.
Within the first week, any external sutures will be removed, or any sutures inside the mouth should dissolve in 10 days. Initially, the swelling may distort the way you look and affect your ability to smile, talk, or move your mouth in some way. This will resolve over the span of several days to weeks.
The majority of people are able to return to work after 1 week as bruising and much of the swelling has usually resolved but this depends on your job. You will have to refrain from any exercise for 1 month, however frequent walking and light activity is encouraged starting immediately after surgery. It can take up to a few months until all swelling has resolved and you achieve your final facial contour. Also, it will take up to a year or longer until all external scars fade.
It is important to follow up with your surgeon as directed so that any potential complications can be detected and treated early. For the most part these are rare and you will spend most of your time enjoying your new look!
What are the
risks of facial
All surgical procedures carry some uncertainty and risk and this operation is no different. Although there are many possible complications, the good news is that the combined risk of having any major complication is still rare as long as your surgeon is properly trained and the procedure is performed in an accredited facility.
The following list represents some of the major complications but it is not meant to be comprehensive.
A facial implant can shift slightly out of its proper position and a second operation could be necessary to re-position the implant.
Infection is possible as with any operation but can be more problematic when dealing with implants. Antibiotics alone may not clear up an infection related to facial implants. This could require having to temporarily remove the implant to properly treat the infection. The implant may then be replaced at a later date.
An injury to the nerves that control the muscles of the face or sensation to the face can occur but this is quite rare. When it does occur it is usually only temporary.
Bleeding can occur as with any surgery resulting in a collection of blood near the implant. This is called a hematoma. If large, this will require urgent repeat surgery to evacuate the blood which usually resolves the problem.
Asymmetry is the rule, not the exception. No one has perfect symmetry between the two sides of the face and after any facial implant surgery these asymmetries will most likely still persist to some degree.
In the vast majority of people, these are subtle and not noticeable by anyone including the patient. However after surgery as patients scrutinize their appearance they tend to notice asymmetries for the first time. A thorough preoperative discussion that includes pointing out these asymmetries before surgery will prevent this issue from developing into a problem after surgery.