Is Buccal Fat Pad Removal Okay to Do in a 40 Year Old?

I am 40 years old, and considering buccal fat pad removal for chubby cheeks. Is this an appropriate age for this procedure or should I wait even longer? I am slightly overweight, so it could be possible that some fat in this area would diminish if I lost more weight. I realize, also that as I age some fat will continue to be lost in this area, as well.

Doctor Answers 5

Should a 40 year old remove the buccal fat pad?

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It is difficult to tell how much fat is in your cheeks because you are smiling. I agree with my other colleges that one should be very careful in removing fat from the face. Having said that I also know that there are times where the cheeks are too full and some excess fat needs to be removed. The buccal fat pad removal helps create definition below the cheek bones. This can be desirable in people with a round chuby face. THere are also times where the buccal fat pad is herniated out of it's deep position and apears as jowls. I have seen patients with this condition who had liposuction done by surgeons who were unaware of this condition with very bad results. In these cases the herniated fat remains and looks worse. Removal of a herniated buccal fat pad is the only procedure that can improve the results. So the age has very little to do with it. You need a plastic surgeon with an aesthetic eye and experience to evaluate you and if they say you need it, then go ahead and do it.

Buccal fat pad removal not recommended

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We do not recommend buccal fat pad removal. Believe it or not, chubby cheeks are a sign of youthfulness and we do not want to accelerate the aging process. We have seen many patients who are very unhappy that they had it done 10 to 15 years later because they look gaunt.  

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 158 reviews

Buccal fat extraction: use cautiously and rarely a stand alone procedure

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Buccal fat removal, if performed conservatively, can provide a thinner appearance to the face. Caution in avoiding excessive resection is urged in order to avoid a gaunt appearance. This can be enhanced by the use of cheek enhancement and/or neck liposuction and/or chin augmentation.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

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Buccal fat pad excision

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If you truly have herniated buccal fat, this can be treated, I am not a big fan of removing fat from the face in most cases because it can prematurely age the face.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Buccal fat removal in 40 year old is not appropriate.

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You need to reposition the fat in your face to where it used to be. This is done by facelift and repositioning of the smas layer. You may or may not need a cheeklift as well. Fat in the older face is good and the skin does not wrinkle as much. See an experienced facelift surgeon.

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 38 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.