Chin Reduction Surgery - What to Expect?

Hello, I am having a chin reduction to correct a over-projected chin. There isn't a lot of information on RealSelf or the internet about this procedure. What should I expect post-op? Also, can a chin reduction eliminate the prominent cleft in my chin? Thank you.

Doctor Answers 5

Chin Reduction Surgery Usually Requires Bone and Soft Tissue Reduction

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Chin reduction surgery is the antithesis of chin augmentation. It is harder to get a good result and the risk of complications is higher. Most of the time, a prominent chin is not just a bone problem but is also too much muscle and skin as well. Failure to treatment all tissues can result in chin dimpling and sagging afterwards. Most chin reductions are done from a submental or under the chin skin approach. This allows for bone burring as well as muscle and skin removal and tightening. This would also be a good time to treat a chin dimple or cleft if it is present. The swelling after a chin reduction does take some time to appreciate the final results, often taking up to 6 weeks to see the full reduction effect.

Chin Reduction Surgery can be customized

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Chin reduction surgery is performed through a small incision under the chin in the groove just above the neck called the sub-mental crease. The skin and muscle are lifted and the bone is sculpted and made smaller with a polishing bur. The recovery takes usually 10 days, with residual swelling after. If the chin cleft was related to the chin bone shape, this can be changed with this surgery.

Chin reduction surgery is . . .

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The surgery can be performed through an incision under the chin or through an incision inside the mouth (leaving no visible scars).  The bone is always reduced and sometimes soft tissue is also removed.  Typically the cleft can be significantly reduced or removed entirely. The bone removal does tend to cause swelling that often lasts for weeks.  Typically the swelling isn't "what happened to your face" bad, it's just "looks the same as it did before surgery" bad within a week or so.  

Bryan Rolfes, MD

Bryan Rolfes, MD
Minneapolis Otolaryngologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

What to Expect After Chin Reduction

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Thank you for your question. There will be a soft dressing in the initial days following the procedure. Also, it is best that patients stay on a soft food or liquid diet to minimize movement of the chin and jaw. Slight swelling or bruising may occur; however, this should dissipate within 2 to 6 weeks. Normal activity can resume after 10 to 14 days, but strenuous activity should be avoided for 4 to 6 weeks. Best of luck! 

Dhaval M. Patel 
Double board certified
Plastic surgeon
Hoffman Estates

Chin reduction surgery

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There are many different techniques to diminish the size of the chin, Depending on the techniques used, recovery recommendations may differ. In some instances the bone is burred down. In others the bone is cut and a wedge like section is removed requiring a plate and greater post-operative restrictions.

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.