What is Cheek Liposuction?

Britt Archer

The face is one of the first things people see when they look at others. Whether due to weight gain or genetics, some people have rounder cheeks than others. Cheek liposuction removes the pockets of fat that cause overly round cheeks.


Cheek liposuction, also called buccal fat removal, is an outpatient procedure. The entire surgery takes about one hour to perform. This is fairly standard for most types of liposuction, though the time required can vary from person to person and may take longer if other procedures are performed at the same time.

Getting liposuction first requires a cosmetic surgeon. A patient will meet with the doctor for a consultation, during which time the doctor will get to know the patient, evaluate his suitability for the surgery and discuss his expectations. The surgery itself can be performed in the doctor's office, a surgical facility or hospital. Preparing for cheek liposuction should not be rushed, as it has risks, just like any surgery.

Buccal liposuction is performed under local anesthesia. This means a person is conscious during the procedure but unable to feel pain. The surgeon makes an incision between the cheek and gums. The surgeon removes the fat and closes the incision, using stitches.

Cheek liposuction is a permanent procedure, but the effects seen immediately after surgery are not the final results. Fat, fluids and skin take time to settle and reposition after surgery. This takes up to four months for the body to accomplish, during which time the body is still healing. The healing time and final results vary from person to person.

Pain and discomfort are to be expected after cheek liposuction. Because cheek liposuction causes trauma to the tissues and structures of the face, swelling and bruising often occur. Other side effects can include an allergic reaction to anesthesia, blood clots, hematomas, seromas, infection, facial numbness, loss of facial expression and temporary or permanent facial weakness or paralysis.

Cheek liposuction is a serious surgical procedure. A patient should speak to his doctor, cosmetic surgeon or another trusted health care professional about concerns or questions relating to the procedure. Not every person is an ideal candidate for cheek liposuction.

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