Will Temporal Reduction Cause Any Functional Jaw Problems?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I have a growing interest in temporal reduction surgery, as I have had life-long issues with my head shape/size during my life. 

My number one hesitation, however, is a failure to comprehend how “the posterior portion of the temporalis muscle is removed and the anterior portion shortened” without an effect on function. Did God/evolution put these muscles here for no reason? 

I am amazed at the work you have done on others and am in disbelief that this type of procedure even exists, which is something I’ve wished for many times in the past. 

If there is anything you can provide in redone to my concern, I would appreciate it.

A: I can not speak for what God intended. But it has been my extensive observation on doing a lot of these surgeries that removal of the entire posterior portion of the temporalis muscle causes not functional changes in jaw opening and closing. This undoubtably occurs because when looking at muscle volume, that section only makes up about 30% of the muscle’s total volume.

While the posterior portion of the temporalis muscle is removed I don’t ever remember writing about ‘shortening the anterior portion of the muscle….as that is not technically possible from an incision behind the ear.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana