Did my Surgeon Remove my Cheek Implants During Buccal Fat Removal?

I know this sounds really crazy but I've recently had buccal fat removal. However, now that I see my results after 2 weeks my cheeks seem flatter. Is it possible my surgeon removed my cheek implants without my knowing or is the swelling simply masking my implants? I didn't tell my new surgeon that I've had the implants. I assume he would know they're implants and wouldn't remove without letting me know?

Doctor Answers 4

Highly unlikely

Buccal fat pad reduction is a procedure that is not commonly performed but can make sense in the right patient.  It is important to understand the anatomy before undergoing the surgery so that you are well informed.  Normal aging reduces the buccal fat pad volume.  It is true that some people have more volume in their cheeks than others.  However, it is also universally true that that volume will decrease and descend over time.  Removing too much buccal fat can cause premature aging.  It is also important to remember that replacing fat that has been removed is extraordinarily difficult if not impossible.  The main reason is the location of the buccal fat pad.  It usually resides underneath a large muscle that is responsible for majority of the power motions of your chewing.  Once that fat is removed that space collapses.  Once collapsed it is very difficult to find the exact space and to reinsert a substance such as a filler or better yet fat.  One potential solution is to use something like Sculptra.  While I generally do not advocate buccal fat pad removal, I understand why somewhat would want procedures such as this.  I tried to choose my patients very carefully and I also tried to be conservative in the amount of fat that is removed.  Surgeons who trivialized this procedure simply don’t understand how difficult it is to correct deformities that may occur.  The cost of the procedure can run anywhere from $3000-$7000, depending upon your geographic locale.  Please visit with an experienced board certified plastic surgeon.  My best advice is to always be conservative with any buccal fat pad reduction.

Tampa Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Cheek implants removal during buccal fat pad removal?

Hello Anon32329532,


To simply answer your question, it is "highly unlikely" that malar (cheek) implants have been removed during a buccal fat pad excision (removal) without the consent of the patient.


Nonetheless, it is crucial that the patient completely discloses medical conditions / old surgeries with the surgeon to minimize all possible risks / surprises.


A period of 2 weeks post-op is not enough to assess final results of a given surgery; swelling has to subside and healing has to take place.


Without a solid trust between the patient and the surgeon, communication tends to become difficult affecting the results potentially.


Thank you for your question.


Best of luck to you.

Dr. Sajjadian

Ali Sajjadian, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 195 reviews

Buccal fat extraction

Its unlikely your surgeon removed cheek implants without telling  you.  Buccal fat extraction is performed through limited intra oral incisions which would not likely expose the cheek implants.

Philip Solomon, MD, FRCS
Toronto Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 93 reviews

Cheek implants and Buccal Fat removal

Hi anon32329532,

Buccal fat removal and cheek implants are both good options to enhance the cheeks in appropriate patients. Buccal fat reduction and implants involve different areas and tissues, so your plastic surgeon most likely did not remove the silicone implants. In addition, 2 weeks is very early after facial plastic surgery and swelling is still present. Regardless, you should discuss the presence of implants with your surgeon. Plastic surgeons don't want surprises. Best of luck.

Dr. Chaboki


Houtan Chaboki, MD
Washington DC Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 85 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.