Q: Dr. Eppley, I have heard about temporal reduction and I know you are an expert at it. I was wondering if its possible to reduce the size of a WIDE head from the front view. I realized also when I fully open my mouth my head looks smaller compared to when my mouth is closed. I hate my head and was wondering how long is the down time for this surgery?
A: Temporal reduction is an interesting aesthetic skull procedure that few patients or surgeons have ever heard of. Your description of seeing head width improvement when opening your mouth is due to the thinning of your temporal muscles on the side of your head. They lengthen and narrow when opening one’s mouth widely. Thus you would need reduction of both the anterior and posterior bellies of the temporal muscles. The posterior temporal muscles can be surgically reduced from an incision behind the ear in the postauricular sulcus. Th larger anterior temporal muscles can not be surgically reduced but often respond well to Botox injections. Complete head widening by total temporal reduction is done by a combined procedure of surgical posterior temporal reduction and anterior temporal muscle Botox injections. This procedure surprisingly has very little if any downtime.
Dr. Barry Eppley