Genioplasty is the technical name for this plastic surgery procedure, which helps enhances the projection and improves the definition of the chin. There are basically two ways to perform a chin augmentation; one is by cutting the jawbone (mandible) and advancing it forward to increase its prominence, the other is to insert a prosthetic implant.
The former procedure is typically performed under general anesthesia as an outpatient. The incision is inside the mouth under the lower lip through which the bone is exposed. A saw is used to make a horizontal cut in the bone so that the chin can be slid forward and held in place with wires or, more commonly, small titanium plates and screws. This is known as an advancement or sliding genioplasty.
Most cases, however, are performed under local anesthesia with oral sedation in an office operating room for insertion of an implant. The prosthesis is typically a silastic (solid silicone) implant that can be inserted through an incision inside of the mouth or, more commonly, through a short incision under the chin. In these cases, the chin muscles are elevated off of the bone, creating a pocket just barely larger than the implant on the anterior surface of the chin, extending to the side for several centimeters to accommodate the wings of the implant that are gradually tapered.
During your consultation with Dr. McMahan, you can thoroughly discuss the overall final effect you are looking for. The two most common procedures performed at the same time as a genioplasty are liposuction of the neck, which is also done as an office procedure, and rhinoplasty, which is done at an out-patient surgery center. Both procedures in addition to the chin surgery can have a significant effect on the balance of the face when seen in profile.
Although you will be allowed to return home after you spend some time under observation in the office, your taped chin must be given good care until the stitches are removed. You will be advised to avoid exertion and excessive chewing for a few days. In addition, you will be instructed to keep your head elevated as much as possible and to use ice packs to reduce discomfort, bleeding and swelling.
There is usually relatively little discomfort with a genioplasty though pain pills will be prescribed in the event that they are needed for a few days. There is also typically relatively little bruising, especially if you carefully follow the postoperative instructions of head elevation, ice and minimal chewing for the first 36-48 hours and you strictly avoid taking the medications on the list you will be provided that can increase the risk of bleeding during and after surgery.
A split piece of foam tape is placed over your chin to help hold the implant in place for a few days which you should leave on as instructed and, obviously, you must avoid physical activities such as basketball where you could potentially sustain trauma to your chin for a few weeks.