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Liposuction is a well known method for fat removal that is mainly done on the body. The only facial area that is known to commonly undergo fat removal is in the neck, usually referred to as either submental, neck and jawline liposuction. But this is not really the face as defined by any location north of the bony jawline.

But there are facial areas that can undergo safe and effective liposuction procedures. The differences from body and even neck liposuction is that these facial areas are small, are subcutaneous in nature, should be treated only by very small cannulas and the access incisions for introducing the cannula need to be well hidden. One such facial area is the perioral mound/lower cheek area one often as a complement to the buccal lipectomy procedure for a more complete cheek contouring effect.

Another subcutaneous facial area which can be reduced by small cannula liposuction is the lateral facial region. This facial area is largely located over the masseter muscle. If a horizontal line is drawn between the attachment of the earlobe to the corner of the mouth and a vertical line dropped down from the corner of the eye, this identifies the lateral facial area that can be safely aspired with a cannula. This is safe because there are no facial nerve branches in this area and it can be easily accessed from an entrance site behind the earlobe.

The lateral facial liposuction site is a posterior extension of the more anterior perioral mound liposuction area which is closer to the mouth. These share the similarities of having a subcutaneous fat layer beneath the skin in which no facial nerve branches exist. For those patients who have fuller faces that desire a comprehensive slimming effect, this lateral facial area combined with perioral liposuction and buccal lipectomies offers the most facial fat removal that is possible.   

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana

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