It is hoped that the following will help to answer many of the questions which patients ask me and will also provide you with a useful introduction and pre-operative guide.
Chin surgery is performed to re-shape or increase the size of the chin for better projection and appearance. Ideally the chin should extend to a point immediately below the lower lip projection. When the teeth are in a good position and the chin is too large, a chin reduction is required by removing or re-positioning the excess bone of the projecting chin.
When the chin is small, augmentation is required either by bone advancement or most commonly by insertion of a synthetic material (most frequently silicone). Soft tissues can also be treated. It is possible, for instance, to recreate a midline dimple in some patients willing this effect.
This surgery can be performed alone or in conjunction with the nose, face-lift or liposuction to the neck. Chin surgery can be carried out by two approaches, either from inside the mouth or by making a small cut in the skin of the chin.
Before the operation we will be able to discuss the aimed results with the help of digital photography and computer imaging. This technique is a communication tool and is never intended to serve as a completely accurate estimation of the final result. This technology is very helpful for defining more precisely your wishes in terms of the facial balance and to visualize what is obtainable.
Chin augmentation is usually performed under local anaesthetic combined with sedation, however, when it is done with another procedure general anaesthesia may be needed. The implant is usually inserted through the mouth avoiding any external scar.
You will feel very little pain and you will have only mild swelling. You will have an adhesive dressing on the chin for one week. Soft diet and usual oral hygiene is all that is required.
These are rare, but could include infection, bleeding and occasionally displacement of the implant, all of which can be remedied. The implant becomes fixed to the surrounding scar tissue which normally prevents it from moving around. There are some reported cases of bone changes underneath the implant, but these rarely cause any serious problems. On very rare occasions there is temporary numbness of the chin due to stretching of the nerve supply.
After the operation you will be visited while in hospital by myself normally or otherwise a member of my team in order to ensure a personal and confidential programme of after care. I can be contacted through my secretary or -out of hours- the Hospital switchboard should the need arise.
It is important to note that a more in detail discussion about the operation and possible complications adjusted to your specific needs takes place during consultation.
I hope that this information, and the attention that you receive post operatively will keep you fully informed.