Horizontal Chin Reduction

Q: Dr. Eppley, I’ve recently (one month ago) undergone a horizontal chin reduction in my home country. I’m not sure what the technique is called exactly, but my surgeon cut my chin bone into a T sort of shape and removed a middle piece of bone via an intraoral incision. The horizontal length of the bone removed from the middle part of my chin was around 8mm. There was no sliding forward and backward of the chin itself.

Now I have this straining or tightness feeling in my chin, and I was wondering how long it would take for this feeling to subside? It makes it very hard to eat anything because it is so tight!

I was also wondering how long it would take for swelling to go down completely, as the fleshy tip part of my chin seems to protrude out slightly more than prior to my surgery. When I try to purse my lips, it creates a groove or dent underneath my chin. Hopefully this isn’t permanent.

A: My first comment is that these are questions that you should directed to the surgeon who performed the procedure. If you had the confidence for him/her to do the procedure then you should also trust what they have had to say after the surgery.

That being said, an 8mm horizontal chin reduction is a lot and what you are experiencing are the soft tissues straining to make the change to a loss of its bone support. This combined with the resuspension of the muscle, which had to be separated to do the procedure, makes for a lot of healing and soft tissue readaptation to occur. It is going to take good 3 to 4 months after surgery until the final outcome is realized. I can not say what you are seeing and feeling now will completely resolve, only time and healing will answer that question.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana