Genioplasty Procedure | Enlarging Or Reducing The Chin

If you have a congenital chin deformity (a small receded chin, a large prominent chin, or a crooked chin point that creates facial asymmetry), it may not only impact your general health but also your self-confidence. The chin has a significant impact on an individual’s facial appearance as it is a major contributor to the lower face features; providing definition to the jawline and enhancing facial appearance in profile.

Facial harmony is achieved by repositioning the chin to balance other facial features such as the nose, lips and forehead. The chin position also assists in providing lip seal over the teeth (lip competence), thus enhancing the appearance and protecting the dentition.

This article explores everything you need to know about genioplasty, including the types of genioplasty, who genioplasty is ideal for, its advantages and disadvantages, the stages of a genioplasty procedure, genioplasty recovery and complications.

What Is Genioplasty?

Genioplasty is a surgical procedure performed by specialists designed to enhance the appearance of the face by harmonising the jaws, nose, chin and smile. It involves changing the shape of the chin to alter a patient’s facial profile and symmetry. This procedure can be performed alone or in combination with other jaw-related surgeries to produce the client’s desired medical or cosmetic outcome.

What Conditions Does Genioplasty Correct?

Genioplasty is ideal for people who experience chin problems. These may include:

Congenital chin deformities that produce facial disharmony, such as condylar hyperplasia, hemi-mandibular elongation, hemifacial microsomia, occlusal and skeletal deformities.

An enlarged chin (macrogenia)

An unusually small or deformed chin (microgenia)

A weak, receding or under-projected chin (retrogenia)

A prominent, protruding or over-projected chin (mandibular prognathism)

A recessed jaw and overbite (retrognathia)

A double chin and full lower face

An ageing neck and jawline

Sleep apnoea correction to improve tongue position and open the airway

The goals of a genioplasty procedure involve:

Creating an aesthetically pleasing facial contour

Improving jawline definition

Correcting facial asymmetry

Establishing a proportionate facial height and aesthetic balance to the face overall

Types of Genioplasty

Horizontal Genioplasty

A horizontal genioplasty is useful for reducing the prognathic (large) chin that protrudes forwards.

Vertical Genioplasty

A vertical genioplasty is ideal for increasing or decreasing chin height, where there are discrepancies of facial height, between the lower, middle and upper facial dimensions. Vertical height is increased by adding bone or bone graft material, which is held in place with tiny plates and screws.

Sliding Genioplasty

Most commonly, your genioplasty will be a sliding type whereby the height, prominence and symmetry of the lower face and chin can be adjusted simultaneously.

It is also key for resolving issues such as airway obstruction. This type of surgery involves detaching the chin and moving it (along with the muscles that control the tongue) forwards, or forwards and down.

Alloplastic Chin Implants

Alloplastic chin implants are ideal for minor abnormalities involving the chin. They are highly effective in creating a more balanced and symmetrical appearance among patients with receding chins.

How Is A Genioplasty Procedure Performed?

All genioplasty procedures are performed by creating an incision either under the chin or inside the mouth. Depending on the goal of the surgery, this may also involve cutting or removing a piece of the chin bone or placing a chin implant. These procedures typically require inpatient, general anaesthesia.

Stages Of Genioplasty Surgery

The patient is admitted to hospital and is administered local and general anaesthesia.

The specialist surgeon will make an incision on the inside of the lower lip or under the chin, down to the bone level.

With the chin exposed, the surgeon can identify