Buccal fat removal surgery involves reduction of fat from the cheeks. This fat pad exists just below the cheekbones and consists of tissues and lobules of fat. This treatment is suited for both men and women who suffer from over sized jowl. The face looks thinner and slimmer as a result of this surgery and it provides better proportion to the face. This surgery is mostly performed on people from 20s to their 40s but the age requirement is just 18 plus years. This operation is not recommended for patient s above 40s as the face starts to lose fat naturally after that age. This procedure can be performed along with other operations like nose job or liposuction. It is performed under general anesthesia and light sedation. It takes around 60 to 90 minutes.

Buccal Fat

Buccal fat is located just under the cheekbones. It consists of fats and tissues and is the encapsulated fat in the cheeks. This fat pas is situated between the buccinators muscle which helps us chew and several other muscles. It is often confused with malar or jowl fat pad. The former is located under the cheek and latter a little further down. The difference between buccal and jowl fat is very important in surgery. Buccal fat makes a difference in the hollowness of the cheeks but not in jowl formation. The practical use of buccal fat involves aiding in suckling and cushioning facial muscles. These are just theories and not facts.

Reasons for Buccal Fat Removal

There are many reasons as to why people seek buccal fat reduction. It helps in making the face appear thinner and makes it more proportionate. It gives a chiseled jaw line and a thinner looking face. It is generally useful for a full face but it is a very subjective term. The results which this surgery yields are different for everybody depending on their faces.

People with chipmunk or hamster face go for it. It is an ideal solution for such people with such faces and gives them a slimmer face. Moon faced or round faced people also opt for this surgery as it imparts a better proportion to their face. People with big jowls and puffy face can also undergo this surgery. Big jaws make their faces appear big. This surgery makes their face slimmer with better proportion.

If a person decides to undergo this surgery for any reason, they should consult a qualified doctor and discuss at length the pros, cons and results with them. A qualified surgeon is the best person to guide people who want to undergo this surgery. This surgery should be performed by trained surgeons in accredited hospitals.

Risks and Complications

Small incisions measuring two to four centimeters are made inside the mouth which runs from gum to cheek. The scarring is not visible due to this. It is very mildly invasive but there is some swelling and bruising. It depends on the patient’s health. The pain caused by this surgery is minimal and can be taken care of by the medicines. If there is any discomfort, surgeon should be consulted. As with any surgery, there is risk of infection so patients should take prescribed port operative care. Get someone to care during recovery period and remain elevated for two to three weeks.

Recovery and Effectiveness

Recovery time depends upon the kind of surgery undergone. Desk jobs require three days of recovery time and there should not be much talking. Any other hectic job may require more time. A patient should listen to the surgeon on this issue. Any sports or vigorous activity should be avoided for six weeks. The patient should make sure that their blood pressure does not rise as it may slow down healing process. On the first day, patient should not wash his/her face and also not wear make up. For the first few days, chewing should be limited and soft food should be taken. Salty food should be avoided and mouth should be washed to make sure nothing enters incision. At least two visits to the doctor are required: one to remove sutures and the other after 2-3 weeks to make sure the recovery is fine.

Buccal fat removal is effective but a person should not have unrealistic expectations. They should talk to the surgeon about results before going for a surgery. Immediate results are not visible. Complete results are visible only after 4 weeks.

Cosmetic surgery is an important decision in anyone’s life and people should choose carefully if they want to go ahead or not depending upon the suggestion of their surgeon. They should disclose their medical history to the doctor and seek clarity on all the points they don’t understand. They should also talk about their expectations and results with the doctor. All the things should be disclosed to the doctor.


This surgery provides permanent results. The only problem is that people lose cheek fat as they age. People who have undergone this surgery may look gaunt once they age. This is the reason this surgery is not recommended to older patients. People should also consider post operative results before going ahead. The cost of this surgery depends upon a number of factors like the consultation fees, quality of the clinic and surgeon and aftercare.