Chin Implant Removal

Q: Dr. Eppley, I am interested in chin implant removal. I am currently 6 months after my rhinoplasty and chin implant and I am unfortunately more than disappointed with the results. I went in with my nose being my main concern and my plastic surgeon was very adamant about giving me a chin implant, as a lot of surgeons suggest doing with rhinoplasties. Because I trusted him and his work, I agreed to it. I wanted to wait to do the implant at a later time, thinking it would be too much all at once, but he thought it would be best to get it all over with at one time. Well, I should have stuck with my gut, because I was right- the results are too much. I wanted a new nose, not a new face- and with the two, I just don’t feel like myself anymore. I realize I had a small chin and maybe the way my chin is now, might be aesthetically perfect to others, but it is not me and I wish I could have loved myself for what I was. I went to my 3 month post-op appointment to voice my concerns with my plastic surgeon, because not only am I not pleased with my implant, but I am going to need a revision rhinoplasty. He looked at me in disbelief, telling me he was disappointed in me and that anyone else would be thrilled with their results- that what I’m seeing is psychological. I can assure you, I am not feeling good about myself, but I know I am not seeing things. When telling him I didn’t like my implant, he told me getting it out would be the biggest regret I would ever make and that the procedure is extensive and complicated. Right now, I just want to get back to feeling and looking like me again. Being that I am so early in my recovery for my nose, having this implant removed is all I can do and I really would love your input. I have done a good amount of research and I am terrified that I’ve made a huge mistake. I keep reading about people getting their implants removed and their lips/chins being permanently numb, hard, or they can’t move their mouth properly.. or they have the sagging skin, dimpling, etc. A big dislike I am having with this implant is that it has changed the way I talk, amongst other things. I had such a petite face/chin before and although this may be a small implant, it was enough to change my look completely. And to me, not for the better. I have tried to look into doctors who specialize in implant removal and did not have a lot of luck- it seems like a lot of doctors are able to put them in, but are not as experienced in taking them out. I just really want this done the right way, or not at all. I don’t want to be stuck like this for the rest of my life, but I really can’t handle dealing with anymore bad results. You were one of less than a handful of doctors that popped up right away in searching the removal of chin implants- Can you please give me some insight?

A: Thank you for your inquiry. It is always disheartening to hear of unsatisfactory aesthetic outcomes from any form of plastic surgery whether it is my patient or another…so I do feel your psychological pain. I always do preoperative imaging on any facial reshaping change to be certain that the patient likes their predicted new face. That may or may not have been done in your case. But either way it is irrelevant now. You have done the definitive test, you have worn this chin augmentation result long enough to know whether you like it or not.

A silicone chin implant removal is very straightforward and far less ‘complicated’ than putting it in. While the implant is small and has not been in for very long, and the risk of any soft tissue sag is low, it may be beneficial to do a little soft tissue tightening internally when it is removed. But based on  how you feel, just get it removed ASAP and get back to the lower facial shape that you know.

The picture being painted that a chin implant removal is complicated and will lead to other adverse issues is not accurate.

Dr. Barry Eppley
Indianapolis, Indiana