Buccal Fat Removal

We offer buccal fat removal services in the greater Salt Lake City, UT area. Having a baby face can be both a blessing and curse. While full cheeks may look cute during childhood and can even maintain a sense of youthfulness as we age, a full face can also create a false impression of obesity in an otherwise fit person and can hide the natural, attractive contours of the face and jawline.  Some patients note that they have a full face regardless of their level of fitness or current weight.

Some patients with a naturally full face are interested in options for reducing fullness and enhancing natural angles and contours of the face.  Buccal fat removal has become increasingly popular as an option for achieving these goals.  As with any procedure however, it is important to thoroughly understand risks, benefits, and long-term expectations of this procedure as the fullness in our faces tends to diminish naturally over time.

What Is Buccal Fat Removal?

Buccal Fat, also known as cheek fat, is a defined compartment of fat that is found in the lower part of the cheeks, just below the cheekbones. It is a natural element of facial anatomy and plays a role in giving the face shape and fullness. Some people may have more prominent buccal fat pads than others, which can give the appearance of a rounder face or “chubby cheeks.”

Buccal fat removal, also called cheek reduction is a cosmetic procedure that can be done to reduce the size of these fat pads. The procedure is generally performed through a small incision inside the mouth that heals quickly and is difficult to detect.

buccal fat before and after
Facelift with Buccal Fat Removal

Who Is A Good Candidate For Buccal Fat Removal?

If you feel that the fullness in your lower face is out of balance with the rest of your face you may be a good candidate for buccal fat removal.  As with all facial procedures, It is important to consult with an experienced surgeon when if you are considering this procedure. Good candidates for buccal fat removal include those who:

  • Are in good physical health
  • Abstain from smoking and using other nicotine products
  • Are at a healthy weight but feel they carry excess weight in the face
  • Have a round, full face
  • Are dissatisfied with the fullness of their cheeks

Dr. Henstrom Discusses Buccal Fat Removal On Good Things Utah

Buccal Fat Removal FAQ'S

Buccal fat removal is done in the operating room under a light anesthetic. A small incision is made on the inside of the cheek, and the buccal fat is identified and partially removed.  The incision is closed with dissolvable sutures.

Immediately following buccal fat removal, the cheeks may be swollen or even mildly bruised for 1 to 2 weeks.   Once buccal fat pads are removed, it’s time for the healing process to take place. The mouth area will be swollen, like having wisdom teeth removed which can last up to two weeks. Wound care is minimal and it’s important to keep the mouth as clean as possible to avoid infection. A mild compression wrap is worn around the face for several days to help minimize swelling.

Once the buccal fat pads are removed, it is permanent. As discussed above, it is important to understand that facial volume tends to decrease with age.   Eventually, volume enhancement with fillers or fat grafting may even be recommended to address facial volume loss. 

Although buccal fat removal is a trending procedure currently and can enhance natural contours and angles of the face, patients should be aware of possible delayed effects of this procedure.  As we age, our facial fat tends to diminish, and the buccal fat pad is an important component in maintaining youthful facial fullness.  If the fat has been removed previously, the face can appear to be hollow or gaunt with age.  In fact, many of the patients who see in consultation at Utah Facial Plastics are looking for ways to ENHANCE their facial fat in an effort to restore a youthful appearance.  In summary, risks of buccal fat removal include:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Nerve or salivary duct injury
  • Asymmetry
  • Increased facial hollowness over time

Patients considering buccal fat removal should consult with an experienced facial plastic surgeon to discuss risks and benefits in detail and to determine whether or not they are a good candidate for surgery.  Drs. Thompson, Henstrom, and Manning are double board-certified facial plastics surgeons, have performed thousands of facial surgical procedures. They can assist you with this decision and will provide an honest individualized recommendation. 

Choose Utah Facial Plastics For Facial Rejuvenation

Be sure to come in for a consultation if you wish to learn more about Buccal Fat Removal surgery and if it is the right procedure for you. You can also fill out our consultation request form, and our staff will help you wit questions or set up an appointment with our experienced facial plastic surgeons. Our practice has offices in Layton or Draper, near Salt Lake City, Utah.

Get Started

What happens in a consultation?

  1. Get to know your team.

  2. Help us understand you and your goals.

  3. Learn about our services and specialties.

How May We Help?

"*" indicates required fields

SMS Agreement
* All indicated fields must be completed.
Please include non-medical questions and correspondence only.
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Accessibility Toolbar

Scroll to Top