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Cheek Implants

Article-Cheek Implants

Procedure Description: This surgery can enhance facial contours and balance facial features. It is also used to correct asymmetries and congenital defects. When cheek implant surgery is performed in conjunction with other facial procedures, the implants may be inserted through the incisions used for another procedure. If cheek implant surgery is performed by itself, incisions are either made at the top of the upper lip, near the gums, or on the outer cheek, slightly below the lower eyelid. The implant of the size and shape that the surgeon has selected is then inserted through these incisions into a pocket created in the tissue. In some cases, a small titanium screw is used to attach the implant and the bone. The implants are placed on or below the cheekbones and the incisions are closed with sutures that the body absorbs. At the conclusion of the surgery the skin is dressed to reduce swelling.

Length of Procedure: The surgery generally takes from 30 to 45 minutes.

Recovery: The treated area may feel tight, swollen and uncomfortable in the days following the surgery. Pain medication may be used to lessen discomfort. Movement of the mouth may initially be difficult. Your surgeon should give you information on post-operative care, including limits on physical activities and diet. If incisions are made inside the mouth, you may be placed on a liquid diet for several days. Stitches in the mouth dissolve in approximately 10 days. Swelling also subsides quickly, but this varies.

Risks: Significant complications resulting from cheek implants are infrequent. As with any surgical procedure, however, there is always a possibility of infection, or reaction to the anesthesia. In rare cases, nerve damage may occur. Asymmetries of cheek implants can result from a pre-existing asymmetry of the patients face, improper positioning or post surgical drifting when the implants are not secured. It is important to limit oral function for several days after implant placement, as not to affect their position. Other risks include a temporary loss of sensation in the area of your cheeks, which usually subsides. In rare cases, there may be a permanent loss of sensation.

Results: Cheek implants can make the face appear to be better proportioned. The improved appearance can help to bolster your self-esteem. Most swelling is gone by the second week, but in some cases can persist longer. Scars are generally well hidden.

Estimated Cost: According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average surgeons’ fee in the U.S. for cheek implants is about $1,945. Additional costs vary and can include: anesthesia, operating room facilities and other related expenses.

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