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A Nose Job’s Best Pal: A Chin Implant

Chin Augmentation before and after (right.) (Robert Kotler, M.D., FACS photo.)

A great deal of the satisfaction in rhinoplasty is having a far better profile and a nose that naturally fits the rest of the face.

But in some cases, the chin recedes too much to put the profile in balance, even after the rhinoplasty. The answer? A chin implant.

        (See some chin implant before & after pictures.)

Here’s one way to judge your profile: take a pencil and place the eraser end against both lips with the  sharpened end pointed at your shoes. In a balanced profile, the chin will also touch the pencil.

Our experience after performing some 4,500 nasal procedures is that about 20 percent of rhinoplasty patients would be well-served with a chin implant.

To really put the point across, we use computer imaging which compares a profile view as you are now with another picture made by a computer artist showing the predicted, most likely after-surgery change in your profile.

         (See some computer imaging before, predicted and actual after photos.)

Modern chin implants are made of pre-formed, FDA-cleared medical grade silicone. The U-shaped chin implants come in a wide-ranging variety of sizes and shapes to match the patients’ facial shapes. The implants can be inserted through the mouth or through a thin, under-the-chin incision.

Surgery usually takes an hour.

Stitches are usually removed within a week; most patents look good on the seventh day. Bruising is not a problem because the chin implant is placed under a muscle, away from the surface of the facial skin.

Nature also helps the procedure. Surgeons fasten the implant with either stitches or surgical screws. But within six weeks, the body casts a firm capsule around the implant to secure its position again the chin bone. Its position – and look – are good for life.

Chin augmentation can also be done in face and neck lift and neck sculpture cases.

Temporary drawbacks include short-lived lower lip and chin numbness that usually lasts several weeks. The lower lip may be stiff for several days while the post-operative swelling resolves.

Chin implants may appear too large at first, but after swelling has gone down (within seven to 10 days) the final look takes its shape.