Chin Implant Removal

Q: Dr. Eppley, I am interested in chin implant removal. I would like to have my RZ Extended Medpor chin implant (5mm projection) be removed that was implanted about 6 years ago. I’ve had three revision surgeries since then and the implant is still causing intermittent numbness of varying degrees and motor control problems on the right side of the chin due to excessive scaring (according to my surgeon). Cooling and other activities that cause vasoconstriction alleviate the sensory and motor problems whereas anything that causes vasodilation does the opposite. About four years ago a heavy intravenous cortisone regimen that I received for a facial infection almost entirely reversed all my problems. Unfortunately, the numbness and lack of motor control returned within several weeks. Nevertheless, this success with cortisone indicates that my problems could still be reversible after all these years and that in fact scarring could be the main culprit.

I should also note that I never tolerated intraoral incisions well. Each time they caused me at least 1 year of full numbness until sensation would return and I was unable to move my mentalis muscle for the same period of time. It was like glued to my chin. The last revision surgery was done through a submental incision and that didn’t cause any problems.

Do you advise me to have the chin implant removal done?

A: I think the simple answer is…you are never going to have the potential for significant in your symptoms unless you take the risk of doing it. While there are no guarantees in surgery, and every surgery has risks, your over 6 year history of issues since the implant placement strongly suggests that a more defintive solution should be pursued.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianpolis, Indiana