Our expert says:
Hi Tracy, thank you for the question.
I unfortunately do not have a list of plastic surgeons in the Durban area. My advice is to log onto the SA plastic surgeon’s web page (http://www.plasticsurgeons.co.za/) which provides a directory of their registered surgeons.
You have a number of options for cheek implants and my suggestion is to consider a more ‘natural’ treatment option such as fillers. However permanent implants are also worth considering but each of these options has advantages and disadvantages.
If you choose fillers one can consider ‘natural’ based fillers such as Juvederm Ultra, Voluma, Perlane, or Sub Q. The disadvantage of this choice is the relatively short duration of effect that is dependent on the filler used and the technique of placement. As a rough guideline with the correct depth of placement one can expect results to last between 15 and 24 months. The advantage to this procedure is minimal downtime if any and a very low side effect and complication profile.
Placement of one’s own fat in the cheek area is another option for treating this area. Its main advantage is a relatively long duration of effect (between 3 to 5 years) and the disadvantages is the downtime (swelling and bruising that may last 2 to 4 weeks), the fat grafting may not ‘take’ and the procedure may have to repeated, and a theater with either conscious sedation or general anesthetsia is required.
Permanent cheek implants is a full surgical procedure and besides the normal side effects and complications to consider with such procedures one needs to consider other possibilities such as rejection, movement of implant, infection, scarring, and that our faces change as we age with a resultant removal and reinsertion of the implant at a future date. The main advantage to this choice is the long lifespan (permanent).
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