Can My Malar Fat Pads Be Removed by Facial Liposuction?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I am interested in facial liposuction.  I am slim but hate my chubby cheeks. Whatever I do they don’t go away. I tried buccal fat removal with little luck. Problem is the round bit of fat in malar pads which always goes very high on my apples of my cheeks when I smile. Can the cheek malar pads be removed completely? I want like male models so it looks like no fat at all on cheeks and so When smile it is just skin that raises up instead of the fat malar pad. I dont need malar lift, I just want it to be gotten rid of for good. Can it be completely removed and sucked out even if this may leave some sagginess of the skin. After that maybe I can have midfacelift if needed but I really want this malar pad gone. It is not buccal fat that I want gone, it is malar pad which rests on top of cheekbone. I don’t want a malar lift to redistribute fat on to higher position, just complete removal. Is it possible?

A: I understand perfectly as to what you are referring to and it is no surprise that a buccal lipectomy would have no effect. The buccal fat pad is in a lower anatomic location. The tissues that you are referring to are over the malar region but to describe them as the malar ‘fat pad’ is not anatomically accurate for what you are trying to achieve. The malar ‘fat pad’ is not like the buccal fat pad, it is not an isolated and thus easily extractable type of fat. Rather it is fat mixed in with other tissues giving it a more fibrofatty quality to it. Thus it is not amenable to excision (like the buccal fat pad) and is more resistant to small cannula or microliposuction. This does not mean it can not be treated, it is just a question of how effective it would be and that disrupting these tissues will cause it to sag as the suspensory ligaments would be traumatized. But when it comes to complete removal of the malar fat pad fullness, I do not believe that is surgically possible.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana