Buccal fat removal is a surgery to remove the fat in this area of your face. Removing this fat can highlight the bone structure in your face, especially your cheekbones and the hollowed-out areas between your cheeks and jawline. This procedure is also sometimes called a cheek reduction.

It generally takes about seven to 10 days for the tissues inside the mouth to recover following buccal fat pad removal. As such, a patient may need to maintain a soft or semi-liquid diet in the first few days after surgery. A special mouth rinse is sometimes recommended for use after a buccal lipectomy.

The procedure is performed under local anesthesia with sedation and it is generally a day case recovery. The incision is places inside the mouth so no visible scar are present after the surgery.

Swelling usually peaks at day 3 and subsides afterwards. It is not uncommon for some minor swelling to last 2-5 weeks after surgery. Each patient experiences a different healing process. When resting, elevate your head above your heart to help decrease swelling for the first 3 days after surgery. The sutures for a buccal fat pad excision are dissolvable and are usually in place for 5 to 6 days.

Possible complications include:

  • Excessive bleeding
  • Infection
  • Hematoma
  • Seroma (fluid accumulation)
  • Salivary gland damage
  • Facial nerve damage
  • Excess removal of fat
  • Facial asymmetry
  • Poor results
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