Everyone has buccal fat. When we are young, our buccal fat gives us full cheeks and a youthful appearance. We tend to lose buccal fat and our “baby face” as we age. However, some people carry all their buccal fat into adulthood. This can create the appearance of full or chubby cheeks.

If you are unhappy with the appearance of your full cheeks, a buccal cheek fat reduction could help you achieve your desired look. In this post, we’ll cover the basics of buccal fat removal to help you determine if the procedure is right for you.

What is buccal fat removal?

Buccal fat are the fat pads located in the hollow section of each cheek, resting just beneath the cheekbone. Buccal fat removal, also called buccal cheek fat reduction, is a surgical procedure that removes unwanted or excess buccal fat from the cheeks. The result of this procedure is more defined facial features with prominent cheekbones.

Who is a good candidate for buccal fat removal?

Buccal fat removal is not for everyone. The best candidates for this procedure typically have the following characteristics:

-Are young, physically healthy, and at a consistent weight

-Have a rounder face with full cheeks

-Are dissatisfied with the appearance of their cheeks

-Have realistic expectations

-Are nonsmokers

Buccal fat removal is generally not recommended for those who have naturally thin faces. This is because the results of buccal fat removal can make a person with naturally thin features look older and, as they age, their cheeks can take on a sunken appearance.

In addition, older people are advised against getting this procedure. Facial fat already declines with age, and buccal fat removal done on an older person may merely emphasize signs of aging.

What is the cost of buccal fat removal?

Depending on the surgeon’s experience, the type of anesthetic used, and after-care medication, a buccal fat removal can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $5,000. Buccal fat removal is a cosmetic procedure and therefore is not covered by insurance.

Are there any risks associated with the procedure?

Buccal fat removal is generally considered safe, but it is important to understand the potential risks of the procedure. Your surgeon should thoroughly go over these risks with you, which include but are not limited to the following.




-Injury to the facial nerve, resulting in facial muscle weakness,

-Injury to the salivary duct

-Numbness or persistent pain

-Continuous swelling

-Seroma, a build-up of fluid where tissue has been removed

-Hematoma, a pool of clotted blood that forms in tissue

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What is the recovery time of this procedure?

In the days following your procedure, you will be restricted to a soft non-acidic non-spicy foods Swelling and bruising are normal, and you can expect a full recovery in three weeks. It will take a few months to see the full results, though, because your cheeks need time to adjust to their new shape.

“Dr. Moenster is an excellent doctor. She’s very professional and polite! The support staff at the clinic is also great! I’m so happy that this is the doctor I chose!”


Next Steps to determine if a cheek reduction is right for me?

If you have full, round cheeks, and meet all other health requirements, you could be a good candidate for a cheek reduction. However, the best way to determine if this procedure is right for you is by scheduling a consultation with our Board-certified Plastic Surgeon Dr. Jamie Moenster. Fill out the form on this page or call our Tucson location at 520-207-3100 or our Sierra Vista location at 520-458-1787.