Facial Asymmetry Correction

Q: Dr. Eppley, I am interested in facial asymmetry correction.  I just had lower jaw surgery for an underbite. I had the bottom jaw rotated to the left as my jaw was deviated a but, but even after the surgery was finished, I still had asymmetry. I want this issue fixed if possible. One side is strong, the other is not. I don’t know if you would reccoment making the strong side less so, or the weak side stronger. Also, I live in another state and could come down for the operation, but I don’t think I could bring anyone. After the operation, could a nurse drive me back to the hotel? How does that sort of thing work?

A: Thank you for your inquiry. In answer to your facial asymmetry correction questions:

1) Mandibular osteotomies rarely fix lower facial asymmetry.They may reduce it but their movements are controlled/limited by the occlusion. You should wait a full three months after this surgery to allow the bones to heal and all swelling and soft tissue contraction to occur to fully assess the final results. I would need to see pictures of your face and eventually a 3D CT scan to determine how to best treat your jaw/lower facial asymmetry.

2) How best to treat the asymmetry (make the weak side stronger or make the strong side weaker) is best determined by computer imaging of both potential outcomes.

3) It is very common for patient’s to come by themselves and you have correctly assumed that our nursing service takes the patient back to their hotel if no overnight stay is warranted.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana