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About Chin Augmentation Surgery
The most common abnormality of facial bone proportion is a weak or retruded chin (microgenia). This is rarely a functional problem, as only the projecting part of the lower jaw (the prominence of the chin) is affected. This is very different from micrognathia, which is a small jaw,and commonly is asociated with poor alignment of the teeth, also known as malocclusion. In our society, a strong jawline is considered a sign of strength, particularly in males.
A retruded chin is often discovered when a patient is concerned about excessive prominence of the nose. A weak chin will give the illusion that the nose has too much projection, or make a slightly large nose look even larger. Chin augmentation is a surgical procedure that enlarges the chin to achieve balance in the facial proportion.
Frequently Asked Questions
How does my surgeon choose the implant size?
Once the pocket is created by the surgeon, he will place several different sizers or temporary implants to determine which implant will produce the desired cosmetic effect.
Will my smile be affected?
Because the implant is placed underneath the chin muscle, which is one of the many muscles that move the lips, there may be a temporary change in your smile. This is usually very brief and related to the swelling from surgery. Rarely is there permanent changes in your smile.
Will an implant change my profile?
Yes, the main goal of chin augmentation surgery is to appropriately increase chin projection which is more noticeable when viewed from the side (profile). However, the width and height of the chin can also be increased if necessary to meet the patient’s goals.
How does the surgeon determine the type of implant to use?
The most commonly used material is silicone rubber, as it can be easily shaped if necessary and can be placed through a small incision. This type of implant can also be easily exchanged for another implant in the future if needed to correct for aging changes over time. Trial implants or sizers are used during surgery to accurately determine the exact implant that will produce the desired cosmetic effect.
Are there complications with chin augmentation surgery? What can I expect?
As with any surgery, there is a very small chance of infection or numbness. Uncommonly the implant can be displaced if unwanted contact with the chin occurs in the early healing period.
Will my scar be visible?
The scar is on the underside of the chin, and when it fades it is typically barely noticeable.
Chin Augmentation Procedure Information
Chin augmentation is often combined with rhinoplasty surgery, which is performed under a general anesthetic. Enlargement of the chin can also be performed under local anesthesia as an office procedure.
A pocket for the implant is created directly overlying the bone, through a small incision on the underside of the chin. There are several different types of materials used for chin enhancement. The most commonly used material is silicone rubber, as it is readily shaped and soft enough to conform to the underlying bony contours, yet firm enough to feel normal. Silicone chin implants come in many different sizes and shapes, to assist the surgeon in achieving the desired shape. Not only can the projection of the chin be increased, but also the chin height and width, depending upon the type of implant that is placed. The implant is secured to the fibrous covering of the bone with permanent sutures to reduce the chance of shifting, and absorbable sutures are placed to close the small incision. A small dressing is applied, and a spandex chin strap may be worn to reduce swelling.
Following surgery there may be bruising and swelling and typically discomfort is minimal to moderate and lasts only a few days. Contact sports should be avoided for one month to reduce the chance of displacement of the implant.