The profile of your chin needs to be corrected because the bones of your face and jaws are out of balance with each other. An operation to change the position of the chin is called genioplasty. Genioplasty is often carried out at the same time as other corrective operations on your jaws, but you may find that your surgeon has advised you to have it carried out later.
What does the operation involve
The operation will take place under a general anaesthetic; this means you are going to be put to sleep completely.
- The operation is carried out from the inside of your mouth. There will be no visible scars on the skin of your face.
- A cut is made through the gum, on the inside of the lower lip. This is to gain access to the lower jaw bone and chin.
- The chin is then cut with a small saw to allow it to be broken in a controlled way.
- The jaw is then moved into its new position and held in place with small metal plates and screws. Titanium metal is used and this does not set off metal detectors in airports.
- The gum is stitched back into place with dissolvable stitches. These will take a fortnight or longer to fall out.
What can I expect after the operation?
Surprisingly it is not a particularly painful operation, but it is still likely to be sore. Regular painkillers will be arranged for you. The discomfort is usually worse for the
first few days, although it may take a couple of weeks to completely disappear.
It is also important to make sure that the area heals without any infection, so you will be given antibiotics through a vein in your arm whilst you are in hospital. You will be
sent home with painkillers and a course of antibiotics.
Immediately after the operation your chin will feel swollen and tight. Swelling and bruising varies, but it is generally worse on the second or third day after your operation. The swelling can be reduced by using cold compresses and sleeping propped upright for a few days. Most of the swelling can disappear after a fortnight
but there is often some slight swelling that can take several months to disappear. However, only you and your family are likely to notice this.