What are facial implants?
Facial implants are specially formed solid, biocompatible materials designed to enhance or augment the physical structure of your face. The precise type and size of implants best suited for you requires an evaluation of your goals, the features you wish to correct and your surgeon’s judgment.
Chin implants can increase the size and projection of a chin that does not project in proportion with the forehead and mid-face. A small or recessed chin can also be described as one that seems to disappear into the neck of an individual of normal weight, rather than appearing as a distinct facial feature.
Jaw implants increase the width of the lower third of your face. Much like the chin, a weak jaw can be thought of as one that is not well-defined and distinct from the neck, or one that slopes rather than angles from the ear to the chin. In some cases, both the chin and jaw can contribute to facial imbalance.
Cheek implants increase the projection of the cheekbones. They add volume to areas which may be recessed or ﬂat.
If symmetry among facial features is part of your goal, facial implants may be recommended to augment more than one facial region. It’s important to remember that all of our faces are asymmetric to some degree and your results may not be completely symmetric. The goal is to create balance and proportion. Your procedure may be performed alone, or as a complement to other facial contouring procedures such as nose or ear surgery.
What you should know before facial implant surgery
Facial implant surgery is best performed on people whose head and skull have reached physical maturity. You may only be considered a good candidate for facial implants if you:
- · Are physically healthy
- · Do not smoke
- · Have a positive outlook and specific goals in mind for improvement of facial contours
- · Why you want the surgery, your expectations and desired outcome
- · Medical conditions, drug allergies and medical treatments
- · Use of current medications, vitamins, herbal supplements, alcohol, tobacco and drugs
- · Previous surgeries
- · Evaluate your general health status and any pre-existing health conditions or risk factors
- · Discuss the options available to you for facelift and facial rejuvenation
- · Examine and measure different parts of your face
- · Take photographs for your medical record
- · Discuss your options and recommend a course of treatment
- · Discuss likely outcomes of a facelift and any risks or potential complications
Important facts about the safety and risks of facial implant surgery
The decision to have facial implant surgery is extremely personal and you’ll have to decide if the benefits will achieve your goals and if the risks and potential complications are acceptable. Your plastic surgeon and/or staff will explain in detail the risks associated with surgery. You will be asked to sign consent forms to ensure that you fully understand the procedure you will undergo, the alternatives and the most likely risks and potential complications.The risks include:
- · Unfavourable scarring
- · Bleeding (hematoma)
- · Infection
- · Poor healing of incisions
- · Anaesthesia risks
- · Change in skin sensation
- · Damage to deeper structures — such as nerves, blood vessels, muscles, and lungs — can occur and may be temporary or permanent
- · Allergies to tape, suture materials and glues, blood products, topical preparations or injected agents
- · Excessive scar tissue formation
- · Firmness around the implant
- · Shifting of implants and pressure on surrounding structures
- · Skin contour irregularities
- · Skin discoloration and swelling
- · Skin sensitivity
- · Deep vein thrombosis, cardiac and pulmonary complications
- · Blood clots
- · Pain, which may persist
- · Possibility of revision surgery
It’s very important to ask your plastic surgeon questions about your procedure. It’s natural to feel some anxiety, whether it’s excitement for your anticipated new look or a bit of preoperative stress. Don’t be shy about discussing these feelings with your plastic surgeon.