WHY IS A CHIN AUGMENTATION PERFORMED?
The contours of your face can easily be enhanced. Many people have a chin that is just too small for their face. When one has a lack of chin projection, the face is weakened. It can also make the nose look longer than it really is. A chin implant can have a surprisingly positive impact on the appearance of your face.
WHAT IS INVOLVED IN THE OPERATION?
It is an outpatient procedure that takes 45 to 90 minutes under general anesthesia. There are two techniques for adding prominence and contour to your chin. The implant of desired size and shape is inserted through incisions inside your mouth or in a small incision on the underside of your chin. The implant is secured and the incision is sutured closed. If the incision is made in the mouth, dissolvable sutures are used but there is an increased risk of infection. If the implant is inserted in the small incision on the underside of your chin there will be removable sutures. The risk of infection is less but this approach usually leaves only a faint scar that is barely visible underneath the chin.
ARE THERE ANY RISKS?
There are general risks associated with a general anesthetic such as aspiration of stomach content into the lungs which can cause serious illness or death. Therefore, to help prevent this it is mandatory that you do not eat or drink anything (usually 8 hours) preceding your surgery. Other risks include DVTs, (clots in the veins of the legs) which can break off and travel to the lungs, this is known as an embolus and although very rare, can be life threatening; especially in smokers. You will be encouraged to get up and walk around as soon as possible to reduce these risks. Although infrequent, there is always the possibility of infection. When infection does occur it is generally treated with antibiotics, but in some cases the implant must be removed and later replaced. Implants can also shift and a second operation is necessary for repositioning. You can help minimize certain risks by following the advice and instructions of your surgeon, both before and after your chin implant surgery. There is also the possibility of bleeding, facial numbness or capsular contraction (scar tissue that has formed around the implant can become tightened and hard).
ARE THERE ANY SIDE EFFECTS?
There may be some discomfort, swelling, bruising, and redness. You may have difficulty talking and smiling for several days after surgery. If you have intra-oral sutures, you may be placed on a liquid diet for a day or two to permit proper healing. Swelling can be reduced through constant head elevation.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THE OPERATION?
You will need someone to drive you home and stay with you the first 24 hours after surgery. Your chin may be taped or bandaged which should remain so until advised by your surgeon they can be removed. There may be some discomfort which should be alleviated by the pain medication. If the incisions are inside your mouth they do not require to be removed because they will dissolve with time. If skin incisions are used, stitches will be removed in about 5 days.
WHEN CAN NORMAL ACTIVITIES BE RESUMED?
You may return to work within a few days and resume strenuous activities within two weeks avoiding contact sports for up to eight weeks.
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