Augmentation mentoplasty, or chin augmentation, is a cosmetic procedure designed to enhance facial balance, using a solid silicone implant placed on the chin bone to better project a weak or receding chin.
Patients who feel that they may have a weak chin on profile may consider this surgery. Often these patients presenting for rhinoplasty may benefit from chin enhancement to restore facial balance and harmony. Older patients may seek this to restore a better neck line, or as part of a facelift procedure. If there is a significant occlusal problem (abnormal “bite”), patients may be referred for an orthodontic or maxillo-facial opinion.
Usually done under local anaesthetic and deep IV sedation as a day case. A small (2.5cm) incision is made in the chin crease (under the chin) and a pocket is developed for the implant, which will rest on the chin bone (mandible). I tend to favour the Mittleman prejowl chin implant made in the USA by Implantech, which has long arms that blend nicely into the mandible and also fill out the prejowl sulcus.
Once the pocket is developed, sizers are tried, not unlike breast augmentation, and ultimately the appropriate sized implant is snugly placed in to the pocket and the skin closed in layers, leaving a barely perceptible scar under the chin. Strapping is worn for about a week post operatively.
Potential complications include misplaced or high riding implants, bleeding and sensory nerve injury, all of which are fortunately not common. The procedure usually takes about an hour or so, and most patients are delighted with the results.