Chin Surgery in Boston

Named Among the Best Plastic Surgeons in Boston

Helena O. Taylor MD, PHD, FACS & Stephen R. Sullivan MD, MPH, FACS

Dr. Taylor & Dr. Sullivan, board-certified aesthetic, plastic and reconstructive surgeons and leading craniofacial surgeons in Boston, Massachusetts

Jaw surgery can have a more powerful effect on facial balance than almost any other kind of surgery. A weak lower chin leads to facial disharmony and can exacerbate redundant skin in the neck, and prematurely age a face. Chin augmentation, or genioplasty can add strength, enhance facial harmony and provide a more attractive balanced appearance. An overly prominent chin can be corrected with a reduction genioplasty. The goal is to have a chin that is proportionate with other facial features, and appropriate for the soft tissue envelope.

What is Chin Surgery?

Best Chin Surgery Boston

Chin surgery, also called genioplasty, falls into two broad categories, augmentation and reduction. Augmentation genioplasty, to make the chin larger, can be done with movement of the bone, also known as autologous genioplasty, or with implants.

While silicone implants were used in the past, they have largely been replaced by porous polyethylene implants which can be secured to the bone and behave more predictably. Chin implants can improve the contour, width and projection of your chin. Similary An autologous genioplasty, using the patient’s own bone secured with small titanium plates, can advance, recede, and or straighten a chin. We typically perform autologous genioplasty through incisions within the mouth, and implants through an incision underneath the chin.

As plastic surgeons with a particular interest in craniofacial surgery, Dr Taylor and Dr Sullivan are comfortable performing both autologous and implant based chin surgeries. The practice works hard to fit the procedure to the patient, rather than performing the same procedure on all patients.. Dr. Taylor and Dr. Sullivan will discuss the pros and cons of each approach, and what might be best suited to your individual situation.

Chin Surgery At A Glance


  • Teens
  • Adults


  • Restores facial harmony
  • Improves chin projection and shape




1-2 hours


Sedation (sleepy) or General Anesthesia (asleep)


  • Comfortably at home
  • 2 weeks for most swelling to resolve


3-5 days


  • Activities of daily living – 1 day
  • Light exercise – 3-5 days
  • Full exercise and contact sports – 2-3 weeks

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the results of chin surgery?

A genioplasty can provide significant and durable changes in facial balance. The bony movements are typically stable over time, and it is rare that a porous polyethylene implant needs to be removed or revised.

Will there be a scar with chin surgery?

Autologous chin surgery is typically performed with intraoral incisions which cannot be seen.

A chin implant is most commonly placed through a small incision hidden under the chin crease, which is typically well concealed.

Am I a candidate for chin surgery?

Chin surgery is ideally performed in patients whose upper and lower jaws are generally in good position, but in whom the chin alone is disproportionate. If there is significant malocclusion, meaning the teeth do not meet properly, then moving the jaws with orthognathic surgery may be more appropriate than moving just the chin point. If the area for bony correction is confined to the chin point then genioplasty should be considered. Our Boston chin surgery patients should be nonsmokers, and generally healthy. As the mandible is the last bone of the face to mature, patients should have reached skeletal maturity, which is typically 16-18 years old for girls, and 17-19 years old for boys.

What is the recovery with chin surgery?

Dr. Taylor and Dr. Sullivan will follow up on your recovery ensuring you have the best and most effective rehabilitation from your surgery.

We will continue to be closely involved in your care following your procedure to ensure you have the best and fastest recovery. Every patient recuperates differently. Most of our Boston chin surgery patients take about a week to recover. Genioplasty is typically performed as a day surgery procedure, and patients go home after surgery.

Pain is typically well controlled with non narcotic pain medication with supplemental opioids if needed. If an incision is made within the mouth we recommend a liquid diet for 24 hours, followed by soft foods for several days. Mouth rinses are prescribed, and you may brush your teeth. The area can be swollen for several days, and there may be some bruising but you are typically quite presentable within a few days. Contact sports should be avoided for a few weeks.

Common Benefits of Chin Surgery

  • Improves facial harmony
  • Augments the projection or width of a weak chin
  • Reduces an overly prominent chin
  • Corrects chin point deviation or chin asymmetry
  • Improves redundant skin or a double chin, advancing the soft tissues
  • Cosmetically disguised scars
  • Often combined with facelift, rhinoplasty or submental liposuction for optimal facial balance

What are the potential complications of chin surgery?

Best Chin Augmentation Boston

In almost all plastic surgical procedures we are trading shape for scar. With chin surgery the scars are typically well concealed, though scarring is different from person to person.

While genioplasty is often performed to correct asymmetry there are always subtle differences between the right and the left. Numbness of the lower lip is a dreaded risk of chin surgery, as the mental nerve lies within the surgical field. We work hard to identify, protect and preserve the nerves to minimize the chance of longstanding changes in sensation. Some tightness and temporary numbness is not uncommon however.


  • In the week before your Chin Surgery (Genioplasty) or Facial Implant Surgery:
    • Consider eating pineapple, it may help reduce bruising
    • Consider supplementing with Arnica montana, it may help reduce bruising
    • Complete household chores and prepare meals for the first few days of postoperative recovery
    • Follow preoperative instructions with eating, drinking, and medications
  • Postoperatively, get out of bed and walk (with assistance) every few hours after your operation to decrease the chance of postoperative problems such as blood clots.
  • Practice 15-20 deep breaths every hour to keep your lungs open.
  • After Chin Surgery (Genioplasty) or Facial Implant Surgery, it is important for you to have someone available to stay with you for the first 24 hours, as you may feel drowsy. You may require help the first few times you get out of bed.
  • Please take your medications as directed by Dr. Taylor or Dr. Sullivan to manage discomfort or symptoms.
    •  Acetaminophen (Tylenol) 1000 mg every 8 hours, space doses 4 hours after Ibuprofen so one or the other is taken every 4 hours 
    •  Ibuprofen (Motrin) 800 mg or Colecoxib (Celebrex) 200 mg every 8 hours, space doses 4 hours after Acetaminophen so one or the other is taken every 4 hours 
    •  Gabapentin 300 mg every 8 hours for 7 days 
    •  Vitamin C 500 mg daily for 50 days
    •   Oxycodone 5 mg – 1-2 tablets every 6 hours as needed for pain, though many patients may not need it
    •   Colace 100 mg twice daily to prevent constipation, it is important to have a bowel movement each day 
    •  Zofran 8 mg every 8 hours if needed for nausea 
    •  Scopolamine patch may be placed on the neck on the day of surgery and can stay for 3 days to prevent nausea 
    •  Peridex 15 cc swish and spit in mouth twice daily for one week


  • If there are incisions inside your mouth:
    • They will be closed with dissolving stitches but the repair is delicate for several weeks after surgery. In order for the repair to heal well, do not eat hard or crispy foods, such as hard toast, potato chips, bread sticks, pretzels, or hard candy. Hard foods could damage the repair.
    • Your diet after surgery will progress as follows: Day of surgery and Day 1 after surgery: clear liquids. Some examples are apple juice, water, jello, cranberry juice, popsicles (take off the stick), or clear broth. Days 2-7: full liquids. Some examples are milk, yogurt, thin cooked cereals, puddings, ice cream, creamed soups, and thinned pureed foods. Day 7 to 14: soft foods. Some examples are mashed potatoes; cereal soaked in milk, cooked vegetables, finely ground meats, pasta, bananas, or canned fruits.
    • Rinse the mouth with peridex rinse or saline, at least 4 times a day, and after any oral intake. Do not use peridex for more than one week.
  • If there are no incisions inside your mouth, only under the chin:
    • Most wounds will be closed with absorbable sutures and skin glue. The skin glue forms a barrier to water. Over the skin glue you may have Steri-Strips (white or tan tape). Please do not remove the Steri-strips. Leave them in place until they fall off on their own.
    • Your diet may advance as tolerated back to a regular diet
  • You may have a head wrap to help reduce swelling. This can usually be removed the day after surgery. 
  • You may shower or sponge bath the day after the operation and wash your hair and your face per your usual routine. 
  • Elevate your head and shoulders and when in bed keep your head elevated about 30 degrees (two pillows under your head and back) to help with the swelling. 
  • Do not smoke or expose yourself to smokers or nicotine as nasal skin and wounds can be compromised. 
  • You may apply ice packs to the face for the first 48 hours to reduce swelling and bruising. Bags of frozen peas and corn make for excellent ice packs. You might also consider Icewraps Gel Packs or Swiss Safe gel packs, which can be ordered from Amazon or online. Apply the ice packs for 20 min of each hour while awake. 
  • Cosmetics can be worn on the face as early as 1 day after surgery.


  • For the first week following Chin Surgery (Genioplasty) or Facial Implant Surgery, raising your blood pressure and heart rate can cause bleeding. Avoid straining or vigorous activity. We recommend walking 2 to 3 times per day for 15 minutes.
  • Please do not drive with swollen eyelids or while taking pain medications such as oxycodone. 
  • Do not lift anything heavier than 10-20 lbs, run, lift weights, or perform strenuous exercise for 3-5 days after Chin Surgery (Genioplasty) or Facial Implant Surgery. 
  • Please wait at least 3 to 4 weeks after Chin Surgery (Genioplasty) or Facial Implant Surgery to start massage to avoid increased swelling. Massage can help increase circulation and soften firm areas. 
  • Avoid contact sports for 2-3 weeks following Chin Surgery (Genioplasty) or Facial Implant Surgery.


  • Moderate swelling and bumpiness is to be expected and will increase for 48 to 72 hours. Lips can become particularly swollen. Much of the swelling usually resolves within the first few weeks after Chin Surgery (Genioplasty) or Facial Implant Surgery though some mild swelling can take several weeks to months to resolve. You may get black and blue bruising under your eyes, cheeks and neck. Please be patient. The swelling and feeling of tightness will gradually subside over the following weeks. 
  • Tightness of the skin and fuller appearing facial features is also normal and will smooth out as the swelling resolves and the tissues soften. 
  • Tingling, itching, and numbness are all normal after Chin Surgery (Genioplasty) or Facial Implant Surgery. Tingling and itching are signs of healing and will resolve. Sensation to the skin may return gradually and slowly over several weeks, though some areas may always have loss of or decreased sensation. Please be patient and avoid resting against hot surfaces, which can injure or burn the skin. 
  • Scars and tissues take one full year to mature. You may notice that they become red, raised and firm for several weeks to months before becoming soft, flat and pale. Avoid Vitamin E as it can irritate the skin and scars. Mederma has no proven benefit and is not worth the expense. All incisions will be sensitive to sunlight during the healing phase. Direct sun exposure or tanning booths are to be avoided. Silicone cream, such as Biocorneum Advanced Scar Treatment, or skin moisturizer with sunscreen and gentle massage may be helpful. 
  • Chin implants are made of porous polyethylene and held in place with micro titanium screws. Chin advancements are held in place with micro titanium plates and screws. You do not need to take prophylactic antibiotics with future dental treatments. The implants do not set off metal detectors at the airport or elsewhere. 
  • Please call our office (617-492-0620) if you have:
    • Continuous bleeding
    • Significantly more swelling on one side of the face when compared to the other 
    • Worsening facial or neck pain 
    • Fever, spreading redness, or irritation of the skin or scalp
    • Shortness of breath

It is important to be seen by Dr. Taylor or Dr. Sullivan after your operation. They will see you in follow-up appointments at 1 week, 3-6 months, and 1 year or as often as needed post-op. Call to schedule your appointments at Taylor & Sullivan Plastic Surgery office at (617) 492-0620 between the hours of 8:30 – 5:00 or visit our webpage at We are always available for postoperative concerns or emergencies and can be reached through our paging service 24 hours per day at (617) 492-0620.

Download our Chin Surgery And Facial Implant Aftercare Instructions.

Consultation for Chin Surgery in Boston, MA

If you would like to discuss your options for chin surgery, please contact us to set up your consultation. For your chin surgery Boston plastic surgeons Dr. Taylor and Dr. Sullivan will often operate together as a team to optimize your care and safety, however only one doctor will be your primary surgeon.

Dr. Taylor and Dr. Sullivan have a special interest, and additional training in craniofacial surgery, and have been named among the best board-certified plastic surgeons in Boston by Boston Magazine yearly since they began practicing in the Boston area. They strive to provide honest and informative consultations and perform the best chin surgery Boston has to offer, with precision and care with an emphasis on safety. Excellence with compassion is the motto of Mount Auburn Hospital, and Dr. Taylor and Dr. Sullivan aspire to meet that goal each and every day.

Call Today 617.492.0620

To schedule a private consultation with Dr. Taylor or Dr. Sullivan, please call the office or request an appointment using our form. We welcome your visit and your questions.

300 Mount Auburn St. Ste 304, Cambridge, MA 02138

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Taylor & Sullivan Plastic Surgery Boston
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300 Mount Auburn St. Ste 304, Cambridge