Buccal fat refers to the fat in the cheek area. The area that falls between the jaws when you open your mouth. Buccal fat removal is a process in which the fat tissue is removed from the cheek area on your face. The procedure is typically opted by people who look chubby or by those who want to improve their facial appearance with concave cheeks.
Before consulting a plastic surgeon
Before you consult a good plastic surgeon near you, think if buccal fat removal is right for you or if you really need it. In some men and women, reducing the overall body fat with regular workout can help remove fat from the face and give the concave shape to the cheeks. Though it takes time to get there, this should be the preferred path.
If your profession demands or if you are looking to get rid of the stubborn chubby cheeks even after you work out regularly, you can surely get in touch with your plastic surgeon for a consultation.
What you should know before undergoing the procedure?
When you see your plastic surgeon, you must answer all his/her questions and then you should start asking some important questions that we discuss here.
Some questions that you will be asked include:
- About your overall health – your doctor will do some regular simple tests.
- Your smoking and alcohol consumption habits.
- If you take recreational drugs or abuse any other drugs
- Your medical history
- Reason why you want to undergo buccal fat removal procedure.
Questions that you need ask your plastic surgeon regarding buccal fat removal procedure should include:
- Are you the right candidate to undergo the surgery?
- Recovery time after the surgery?
- What are the possible risks and complications of buccal fat removal surgery?
- What is the recovery time?
- How long do you need to stay in the hospital after the surgery?
- What can you expect from the surgery and during recovery?
The procedure - how is buccal fat removed?
On the day of the procedure, you will be expected to see your doctor on an empty stomach.
Step 1 – Anaesthesia will be given to you. It could either be intravenous or a general anaesthesia. You will be asleep during the procedure.
Step 2 – Incisions will be made on the inner side of the cheek, one on either side of the mouth. The buccal fat pad will then carefully be removed. This is a very important step and you really need to see a doctor with good experience. If any of the nerves in the region gets hurt, it can lead to complications during recovery.
Step 3 – Closing the incisions. The incisions will then be closed with absorbable stitches. You will feel the stitches once you are conscious. You need to stop touching your tongue to the stitches and remain conscious.
Step 4 – During recovery, you will be advised to take antibiotics without fail. Depending on your body’s acceptance, penicillin based or other antibiotics will be prescribed. You may also have ice cream to help with faster healing.
Once the procedure is done, you will be asked to stay in the hospital for a 24 hour period. Your surgeon should make sure that everything is alright before discharging you. In some cases, saliva may get accumulated in the region that can lead to infections. If your doctor finds such a thing happening, she/he will clear it while you are in the hospital. Stitches will get dissolved in a week. You should see your cheeks shaping up really well after a few months.
Risks and complications involved in buccal fat removal procedure
Just like any surgery, when the an incision is made on the body, following risks can be expected:
- Formation of scar tissue
Along with these, specific to buccal fat removal surgery, following may happen:
- Accumulation of saliva that can lead to infection
- Damage to sensory nerves or motor nerves near the cheek
- Improper formation of the scar tissue due to accumulation of blood inside the surgery site.
- Asymmetric cheeks
When the motor nerve is damaged, your smile may not be symmetrical after recovery. If the sensory nerves are damaged, you may feel numb or tingling in the area until the nerves are repaired by the body. Accumulation of blood at the site can lead to improper formation of the scar tissue which can ruin the results of the surgery.
Cost of buccal fat removal surgery in Chennai, India
Cost of buccal fat removal surgery at Flood Gates Plastic Surgery, Chennai, India is around Rs.50,000/- (around 800 USD) as of date. You can call our front desk for an appointment with any of our expert plastic surgeons to know more about the procedure including the actual cost.
Note that this is a cosmetic procedure and your medical or health insurance may not cover the cost.