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Buccal Fat Pad Removal San Diego, CA

Plastic Surgery in San Diego, CA

Full cheeks can make you look heavier and create a round face appearance. Cheek fullness is due to the buccal fat pads found between the cheekbones and jawbones, which vary in size. Buccal fat pad removal, also called cheek fat removal or buccal lipectomy, removes these naturally occurring fat pockets to improve cheekbone definition and create a V-shaped face. Brian Reagan, M.D., F.A.C.S., is a renowned, board-certified plastic surgeon offering buccal fat pad removal in San Diego.

Am I a Candidate for Buccal Fat Pad Removal?

This face procedure reshapes the face by removing buccal fat from the lower cheeks. If you don’t like the appearance of full, chubby, or “chipmunk” cheeks, you may qualify for buccal fat pad removal. However, you must be in good physical health and at a stable weight. While the buccal fat pads will not grow back, weight changes can affect fat volume in the face and cheeks and alter results.

Buccal fat pad removal increases or creates a contrast between the lower jaw and cheekbones and reduces the appearance of a round face. Patients must be at least 18 because the buccal fat pads and face change as young men and women mature. The procedure is best for round, full faces; narrow faces may appear gaunt.

Older patients with cheek fullness may have better results with buccal fat pad removal combined with facelift to address loose skin at the same time.

Benefits of Buccal Fat Pad Removal

Buccal fat pad removal can help men and women enjoy more cheek definition and a thinner facial appearance. The procedure leaves no scars because the incisions are made in the mouth on the inside of the cheek. Buccal fat pad removal can help patients look more mature and emphasize the cheekbones and jawline.

Buccal Fat Pad Removal Procedure

Removing the buccal fat pads requires local anesthesia or general anesthesia, depending on the details of your procedure. Some patients may qualify for local anesthetic if it is a standalone procedure. Dr. Reagan makes an incision inside the mouth on the inside of the cheek to access and grasp the soft fat pads in the cheeks. He then removes a portion of or the whole fat pad through the incision and repeats the process for the other cheek.

Buccal fat pad removal differs from facial liposuction, which removes fat in various areas of the face using a small, hollow tube called a cannula.

Recovery After Buccal Fat Pad Removal

Dr. Reagan will give you post-operative instructions for the recovery process. You may need to be on a soft-food or liquid diet for a few days and use mouth rinses to help the incisions inside your cheeks heal and lower the risk of infection. Healing from buccal fat pad removal takes about three weeks for initial healing, during which most of the swelling and bruising go away. Most patients take several days or up to a week off work and have diet limitations for one to two days. Over-the-counter pain relievers and ice packs can often manage discomfort after buccal fat pad removal.

Buccal Fat Pad Removal Results

It may take several months to see your full results after removing the buccal fat pads because the tissues need to adjust to the new contour. You will notice less cheek fullness and improved cheek definition when the swelling starts to fade. Buccal fat pad removal provides permanent results because the fat pocket will not regenerate, though other fat cells in the face may expand with future weight gain.

If you’re unhappy with your cheek fullness or “chipmunk cheeks,” schedule a consultation with Dr. Brian Reagan at True Beauty Aesthetic Surgery & Medicine. Contact our San Diego, California, office at (858) 454-7546 or fill out our online contact form.