Can You Give Me Some Advice On Forehead Recontouring?

Q:  Dear Dr. Eppley, I wonder whether you could give me some advice about forehead recontouring.  I have a very prominent brow and two bony protusions on my forehead.  I look fine straight on but at 45 degrees I look extremely hollow-cheeked and my eyes look abnormally deep-set.  I tried cheek implants about 15 years ago (they have since reabsorbed) but of course these only made my eyes look even deeper-set.  I also have a very strong chin and nose but can’t reduce these either because they go some way to balancing out my brow line.  Would you be able to provide me with some idea as to my suitability for surgery? Thank you very much.

A: Occupying the upper one third of one’s face, the shape and size of the forehead can impact significantly one’s facial balance and appearance. Your description illustrates that quite clearly. The brow bone area, known medically as the supraorbital rims, is a bony prominence like the cheeks and chin in the lower two-thirds of the face that has cosmetic significance. When it is normal (not protruding) one does not give it a second thought. When the brow bones are excessive, however, it can change the look of one’s entire face…and changing other parts of the face will not really ‘hide’ the brow protrusion or its impact on how one’s eye area looks.

While the shape of the forehead and brows is significant, it is not commonly surgically changed. This is not because the possible forehead recontouring procedures are difficult, have high risks, or involve a long recovery, as they do not. It is because it requires an open approach with a scalp incision and a resultant scar in the scalp. For women this is not usually a major stumbling block, but for most men it is. Since many more men have forehead concerns than women, this makes the number of cosmetic forehead contouring procedures that are done fairly small.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis Indiana