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Facial Implants (Cheek & Chin Implants)


Cheek and chin implants were first used for reconstruction of the face after birth defects and damage caused by accidents or trauma. Now, cheek and chin implants are used regularly by cosmetic surgeons to define a person’s cheek or jaw line producing a more pleasing appearance.

Patients with a major chin deficiency may require a more involved type of procedure, requiring bone surgery to move the bone of the chin forward to reshape the chin. Chin reductions can also be performed to reduce the bone to make the chin less prominent. This is called a genioplasty.

Implants can also be used to enhance the show of the lips.

If you want more information on Facial Implants, please call us on 02392 264073.

What happens during a Facial Implant operation?

In your first consultation , you should explain how you would like to look afterwards. We will need to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the different types of surgery and implant material used. A discussion about the risks and potential complications will, as well as the benefits, be undertaken.

You will then be given time to consider fully all the implications of the proposed surgery and a second out-patient appointment will be only be made if you have elected to proceed with surgery. (If you are still not completely sure a further consultation appointment can be arranged.)  At the next appointment, you would sign a consent form, which means that you have understood the future benefits and possible risks associated with the procedure.  Photographs of your face will be taken for clinical records and stored securely under data protection laws, also they remain “medical in confidence”.

We will discuss the size and shape of the implants at this consultation so you are completely involved in the decision about which one to use.


The operation is generally performed under a general anaesthetic, but some patients are given sedation via an intravenous drip with local anaesthetic if that is their wish.

As in any surgical procedure, the use of a general anaesthetic carries a small additional risk that Mr Mellor will discuss with you. Precautions will be taken to reduce the small risk of deep vein thrombosis.

The procedure

The operation takes between 30 – 60 minutes  depending on the extent of the procedure and the implant material used.

Cheek implants

This involves placing the implant over the cheekbone through a cut made inside the mouth, above the upper teeth.  The surgeon creates a pocket in the tissue and then places the implant in there.

Malar implants are inserted in the outer upper cheek area giving that high cheekbone look of many models.

Submalar implants are inserted in the lower or mid-cheek region to help fill out a sunken face. The face seems to become thinner as we age and many people seek this kind of implant to return their faces to a more youthful look. In fact, a more natural appearance can be achieved with fat transfer because this recreates the “rounder” look to your face by using your own fat from somewhere else in your body.

Some patients choose to have a combination of both malar and submalar implants to plump out both the cheekbones and main cheek areas.

In some cases, depending on the type of implant material used, a small titanium screw may be used to attach the implant to the bone in order to stop the implant moving. Incisions used are closed with stitches that dissolve in a week or two.

Chin implants

Incisions are made inside the mouth below the lower teeth, if a bone operation (genioplasty) is being undertaken but for implant placement this is generally through an incision beneath the chin. There will be a small scar at this site but hidden beneath the chin point.

A pocket is created into which the lower-jaw implant can be placed. Cuts under the skin are closed with dissolving stitches, and incisions on the outside of the skin are stitched with removable stitches. The nerve supply to the lower lip and chin is encountered during the insertion of the implant generally, so there is a high possibility that there maybe some altered sensation, although this is not likely to be permanent.

Implants for lines/wrinkles

This procedure is usually done using a local, rather than a general, anaesthetic and takes around 30 minutes or so. The most common area of use is for nasolabial folds (the lines between the corners of the nose and the mouth). Small incisions are usually placed either side of the line, and the implant material is threaded through the skin beneath the fold to help to plump out the line. The tiny incisions are then stitched together.

How long will it take to recover from a Facial Implant operation?

Depending on the procedure and the extent of the bruising and swelling, you can expect to return to work after two days to one week.

What should you do after a Facial Implant operation?

It is very important that you follow the advice carefully after a facial implant to help to improve the benefit of the procedure and reduce the risk of complications or side effects.

Post-treatment advice may include:

  • Using painkillers as directed;
  • Returning to have stitches removed after 7 days;
  • Sleeping with your head propped up on pillows to help reduce swelling. This will allow your tissues and implant to heal in the best position and prevent the implant shifting in the first few weeks;
  • Do not participate in contact sports for at least six to eight weeks;
  • Contacting your team immediately if you notice any signs of infection or an increase in pain.


02392 456065

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