What Facial Procedures Will Make My Cleft Lip And Nose Look Better?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I am interested in a revision rhinoplasty, sliding genioplasty and a lip lift.  I was born with a unilateral cleft lip and I want my face to be more symmetric. What procedures do you think should be done?I have had one rhinoplasty and I have an L shaped implant. I would like for my nose to be more narrow and symmetrical. With the lip lift I want my lip to be about 15mm or shorter. I have a chin implant, but I think with the genioplasty it will make my chin balance out with the rest of my face. 

A: I have done some computer imaging done on your chin, jaw angles, lip and nose. I think it is fairly clear that your chin is fairly short even with the implant in place. This shows that the jaw is rotated up and back (short) and is why the jaw angles are high. A sliding genioplasty (possibly leaving the chin implant in place and moving it with the bone) may be needed to get the 12 to 15mms forward movement you need. Moderate jaw angle implants in the back will help fill give them some more definition. You don’t need your upper lip lifted by 15mms, that would be too much. Something like 5 to 7mms would be more appropriate. The question here is whether it should be done by a subnasal lip lift (lift only the central portion) or a vermilion advancement which moves the whole lip up. (probably better) The nose is challenging because of your very thick skin and the naturally thicker tip skin that many cleft patients have. To make a real difference, the implant ideally needs to be replaced by an L-shaped rib graft so you can get more of a push/lift on the skin and a sharper tip point. The implant just makes it rounder and still short.

The imaging done is to just figure out of these procedures are beneficial. The fine details of it and the degree of changes is an issue up for discussion.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana