How Can I Get Rid Of My Deep Chin Cleft?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I have a very deep cleft on my chin. A surgeon suggested dermal filler, saying that a chin implant would move because (he said) the dimple was too small. But my cleft chin is very deep and I am very unhappy with it. A doctor injected a syringe of hyaluronic acid into last year but with no visible improvement. I have placed a link to an image of my chin cleft here.

A: Very deep chin clefts in men are not usually the result of any underlying bone deficiency but are rooted in the soft tissue with a lack of tissue between the skin and the underlying muscle. Often the mentalis muscle is clefted as well. In addition the skin is very indented almost like a scar band. Thus a chin implant on the bone is likely to be of little benefit as pushing out from the bone will make little change in the depth of the cleft. Injectable fillers, as has been demonstrated by your experience, do not have enough stiffness and volumetric push to change the cleft. The viable treatment options would be either fat injections done with a subcision release of the vertical skin indentation or an open approach using a dermal-fat graft. In some cases the placement of a small implant in a midline bony groove can be of adjunctive benefit if it exists.

When it comes to chin cleft surgery, it is best to think of it as a reduction rather than a complete removal.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana