Cheekbone Reduction Recovery

Q: Dr. Eppley,  I have some questions about cheekbone reduction recovery. I’m a lady in her 20s who is six weeks out from v-line surgery and buccal fat removal. I’m very worried about the progress of my recovery.

When I smile, my right cheek seems to jut out sideways a lot farther than the other and look very uneven. It looks a lot more fatty, while my cheeks were perfectly even prior to the surgery. 

To the touch, my left cheek is a lot more softer and flatter. My right cheek is a lot more full and feels more firm/thick.

When I pinch my cheeks, to feel the thickness of the tissue (one finger inside mouth), the tissues of the left cheek are noticeably thinner whereas the right cheek tissues feel noticeably thicker.

Could this be an effect from uneven buccal fat removal?

Or could this still be an effect of swelling? However, I read somewhere on your blog that the bulk of swelling from this type of surgery would have dissipated by now, and am worried that I’ll have to deal with uneven cheeks. I’m not sure the little swelling that I have left to wait to subside will decrease the size of my right cheek enough to make them even.

A: To clarify a point of misunderstanding on your part, the full recovery from facial bone surgery takes a minimum of three to four months for all swelling and most of the tissue contraction to occur. (6 to 9 months or even longer is really the full process) You are currently not halfway to that point yet. I would wait until at least that time period before I would be doing any critical analysis of your cheekbone reduction recovery.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana