Numbness After Chin Augmentation

I've had a chin augmentation 10 days ago, and I still can't feel the left side of my lip and chin. I also had liposuction done on the neck, as well as a platysmaplasty. It feels like I am at the dentist with anesthetic. How do I know this is not a pemanent nerve damage? Also, today I started to develop a bit if a rash - feels like an allergic reaction in my cheeks and my right ear is flaking, red and hot. The doctor put me back on antibiotics. What's going on? I am quite nervous.

Doctor Answers (20)

Swelling and numbness after chin enlargement and neck liposuction: double whammy

+4

The combination of these two procedures can cause alot of injury and swellin in the area of the chin which is very common and generally tends to resolve. This can commonly last 2-3 weeks but it can persist for a longer period.

Generally there is nothing to improve the recovery of nerves but to wait it out. Early recovery is preceded by a tingling sensation similar to the way your leg feels after it falls asleep and wakes up.

Stay in close contact with your doctor to monitor for possible signs of infection or allergic reaction.


Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Numbness can occur after chin implant

+4

Greetings Carli,
I would echo the sentiments of the previous doctors. It is not uncommon to have some numbness as you describe after a chin implant. It is likely that the mental nerve is either bruised or stretched. While this is likely temporary, there is a small chance it can be permanent. If temporary though, it can take several months to even years to fully return so don't give up hope.

D.J. Verret, MD
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Asymmetry and numbness is not unusual following facial surgery

+4

With all facial surgery some early aspect of asymmetry and numbness is not unusual. Nerves themselves are very sturdy structures but they do not like being disturbed. With a chin augmentation the implant is close to the mental nerve. Give this 4 - 6 weeks and it will usually return to normal.

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

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Much too soon to worry about permanent nerve injury

+4

There are two nerve roots that come out of the lower jaw and provide feeling to the lower lip. The correct placement of a chin implant is below these nerves but sometimes they get stretched and take time to recover. Occasionally this can take months. Very rarely the numbness can be permanent. Time will tell but you can help the nerve regeneration by taking B complex vitamins. Follow closely with your doctor who will help you through the recovery process.

Richard P. Rand, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

The odds are in your favor that the sensation will return.

+4

Numbness after chin augmentation or liposuction is not uncommon. 10 days does seem like a long time, but you sound as if you have significant swelling. Warm compresses at this point will be helpful to reduce swelling. Be careful that they are not to hot to burn the skin. Cold does not help at 10 days. Local massage can help reduce swelling and decrease sensitivity issues. Continue to follow closely with your doctor and have him check you chin frequently. It may be an allergic reaction, but you don't want to miss an infection.

David A. Dreyfuss, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

The sensation should come back

+3

What it sounds like you are describing is some bruising or swelling along some of the sensory nerves of the face, which can occur with several types of facial surgery, including the ones you described. The good news is that in the majority of cases, the sensation fully recovers, but it will take several weeks or even months.

Shahram Salemy, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 97 reviews

Chin implant

+2

On antibiotics? If there is a doubt of infection, then the implant needs to be removed.

Numbness in 10 days is normal. If it persists, remove the implant. It could be pressing on the mental nerve.

IF THE MENTAL NERVE IS INJURED, THIS IS PERMANENT NUMBNESS. REMOVE THE IMPLANT. Wait 6 months then reconsider next step.

Samir Shureih, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon

You are still very early post-op

+2

Carli,

You are still very early post-op and it is common to still have swelling and occasionally numbness. As for your redness and rash, it is best if your doctor examines you to determine if there is an infection. The swelling and numbness will improve with time.

David Shafer, MD
New York City

David Shafer, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 57 reviews

Mental Nerve injury

+2

There is a mental nerve on either side of the chin that provides sensation to the lower lip and front of the chin on each side. This nerve can be temporarily injured but also can be permanently traumatized. Only time will tell. If you have electrical shocks when you tap on the side of your chin, the nerve could be more severely injured. The majority of time it is temporary and could take months to recover at a general rate of 1 mm. per day.

Robin T.W. Yuan, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Numbness after chin augmentation?

+1
Hello! Thank you for your question! Numbness after any surgical procedure is expected for several weeks to months following. As the nerves to the area are traumatized and will then experience a temporary neuropraxia, a transient loss of nerve conduction. This usually resolves over the next 6-12 weeks, but depending on the procedure performed, sometimes much longer. Typically this should resolve by 1 year. As it goes past this date, the likelihood of the sensation returning is small. However, it can take up to 2 years. If no return from there, it is unlikely to return. It should be discussed that persistent sensory changes may develop following any surgical procedure.  Neuropraxia following any facial procedure is not uncommon, but typically resolve over weeks to months - followup closely with your surgeon, regardless.

The usual signs of the nerves regenerating and neuropraxia resolving is itching, followed by a burning sensation and then occasional sharp, shock-like pains. These will be normal to experience, and actually a promising sign. Usually, normal sensation returns, but is is also possible to have decreased sensation or even increased sensation to the areas affected. Re-educating nerves postoperatively is often helpful and will allow proper instruction for the affected sensory nerves - methods include using different textures to the affected areas when showering, bathing, applying lotion, etc. If bothersome, there are some medications that may be helpful, including Neurontin for pain for hypersensitivity. You can try various textures such as washcloths, loofahs, cotton sheets, etc. Massaging the areas is also beneficial for the incision to make the finest scar possible. The last place to regain the sensation will be directly adjacent to the incision/scar as the nerves will make its way from the periphery to this location. If continual pain arises, evaluation is warranted. After ruling out other causes, one rare explanation may be that a neuroma has developed and may require surgical excision. This is very unlikely unless a large sensory nerve has been transected inadvertently during the procedure. Hope that this helps! Best wishes!

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.