Why Do My Cheek Implants Look Odd And Uneven After Surgery?

Q:  I recently had cheek implants but now one side of my face has hollowed out and both sides of my mouth have developed drooping pouches of tissue .  It looks very uneven and has  distressed me greatly.  I would like your opinion  about this.

A: This is certainly a very unusual type of mouth result from cheek augmentation. The reason it is unusual is that cheek implants add volume to an otherwise prominent facial bone area. If anything it may cause a very mild cheek tissue lifting effect but not dropping of tissues as you state around your mouth. Early after surgery, in the first few weeks or month, one could have swelling and some bruising which drifts downward along the mouth and even into the neck. But if this is would not be the case more than a month after surgery. If other facial procedures were done at the same time, which would be common, then this could still be residual swelling which may yet go away.

Uneveness of cheek implants, however, is not rare and is probably the number one complication of cheek augmentation. It is more difficult than it looks to place cheek implants in the identical position on both sides of the face. The thickness of the cheek tissues do not make it easy to see minor differences in position during the actual surgery. I would wait at least three months after surgery to let everything settle before making a final judgment about cheek symmetry.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana