New York:(332) 205-6400
New Jersey:(973) 264-0032
Miami:(786) 304-1308

Buccal Fat Removal Procedure Offered in New York City


and helps you to achieve a chiseled face!

Buccal Fat Removal by. Dr. Mesa is performed under local anesthesia as an office procedure!

Chubby cheeks, commonly known as “chipmunk cheeks”, very often contribute to overly rounded cheek appearance. Chubby cheeks very often masks the contours of a beautiful upper cheekbone and lower jawbone. Chubby cheeks can make a person look chubby even though they may have a normal body weight and/or thin body. Enlarged cheeks makes the face look wider or “fat” specially when smiling. Very often, chubby cheeks cannot not be reduced in the size of their by simply losing weight with diet and or exercise.

Buccal Fat Removal is a minimal invasive plastic surgery procedure that removes the fullness of the chubby cheeks, and therefore is ideal for people with round cheeks who wish to have a slightly more chiseled expression (thinner of V shape face). Dr. Mesa specializes in buccal fat removal under local anesthesia (without sedation or general anesthesia),  to excise the buccal fat pads (bichat part pads)  from the cheek and achieve a slimmer facial appearance. Common reasons for wanting Buccal Fat Removal surgery include:

  • Puffy or distended cheeks
  • “Moon” face lacking facial contour
  • Genetics (e.g asian patients)
  • Hanging or drooping skin in the cheeks or neck
  • To achieve a a tapered cheek ( V-shaped face)
  • To reduce the fullness in the lower cheek
  • To obtain a chiseled look, with distinct cheekbones,
  • To make the bottom third of the face more slender.

Benefits of Buccal Fat Removal ?

  • Corrects chubby cheeks or baby face chubby look ( chipmunk cheek correction )
  • Allows to achieve an sculpted, athletic appearance with a more distinct facial shape
  • Improves self confidence and self esteem
  • It gives a slimmer facial appearance
  • Gives a subtle thinning of the cheeks with a natural look
  • Enhances the contour of the upper cheekbone
  • It makes the cheekbones may appear higher and with more definition
  • Sculpts a poorly defined face with roundness or plumpness in the cheek area
  • Enhances the contour of the lower jawbone.
  • It gives appearance of losing weight
  • Increasing self-esteem

Features of Buccal Fat Removal ?

  • It is a quick, effective and safe.
  • It is usually performed under local anesthesia
  • Recovery time is minimal
  • Patients can go back to work or school next day
  • It doesn’t leave any external visible scars
  • It is performed as an outpatient procedure

How is the Buccal Fat Removal procedure performed? Dr. Mesa routinelly performs the buccal fat removal under local anesthesia  in the office setting as an outpatient. He doesn’t use sedation (orally or IV) nor general anesthesia since the procedure is virtually painless. Surgery usually take few minutes. Dr. Mesa could also perform the procedure under general anesthesia upon request. This YouTube video explains in detail  how the Buccal Fat Removal procedure is performed by Dr. Mesa from the beginning to the end (intra-operative video might be graphic for some viewers) :   Buccal Fat Removal Before and Afters:

Example of a buccal fat removal procedure in New York City
* Patients individual results may vary.
Example of a buccal fat removal procedure in New York City
* Patients individual results may vary.
Example of a buccal fat removal procedure in New York City
* Patients individual results may vary.
Example of a buccal fat removal procedure in New York City
* Patients individual results may vary.
Example of a buccal fat removal procedure in New York City
* Patients individual results may vary.
Example of a buccal fat removal procedure in New York City
* Patients individual results may vary.

Additional examples of buccal fat removal before and afters could be observed in the Photo Gallery Section.   Reviews about Buccal Fat Removal by Dr. Mesa * Patients individual results may vary. RealSelf Patient Reviews of John Mesa, MD

Call Us to make an appointment:

New York City: (332) 205-6400 New Jersey: (973) 264-0032



Frequent Asked Questions about Buccal Fat Removal in New York City and New Jersey

What’s the cause of big cheeks, “chipmunk cheeks” or full round face? Chubby cheeks, chipmunk cheeks or ‘baby face’ is a facial appearance secondary to enlarged buccal fat. Very common, chubby cheeks, chipmunk cheeks or ‘baby face’ is an the hereditary condition cannot be remedied through diet or exercise.   What is buccal fat? Buccal fat, buccal fat pad or Bichat’s fat pad, is a pocket on fat located in the lower anterior face that contributes to the facial definition. The size of the buccal fat defines the fullness of the anterior lower cheeks. In many patients the buccal fat causes the cheek to look full and the face look round (“ chipmunk cheeks “), thus taking away the aesthetically pleasing silhouette of the face.   What is buccal fat removal surgery? Buccal fat removal is one of Dr. Mesa’s favorite operations. Buccal fat removal ( bichectomy, buccal lipectomy, buccal fat pad removal or buccal fat pad excision) is a minimally invasive cosmetic plastic surgery performed to reduce the fullness of the lower cheek or “ chipmunk cheeks ” A Buccal fat removal can give you a beautiful, contoured chiseled look.   How to tell if you are a good candidate for Buccal Fat Removal? An ideal candidate for buccal fat excision surgery are both men and women with excessive fullness in the lower cheek area, round face, chubby cheeks or chipmunk cheeks who would like to have an sculpted / chiseled face. The video bellow helps to understand who could be a good candidate for buccal fat removal:   Am I a Candidate for Buccal Fat Removal? Buccal fat removal is ideal for patients who are dissatisfied by the stubborn appearance of chubby cheeks (excessive fullness in the lower cheek area) and would like to achieve a slimmer chiseled face. Dr. John Mesa can help you decide if buccal fat pad excision is right for you during your initial consultation.   Can I improve my ” chipmunk cheeks” ( chubby cheeks ) with other procedures rather than buccal fat excision (e.g. Liposuction of the cheeks). Buccal fat (Bichat’s fat or buccal fat pad) is a distinct encased fat pad within each the cheeks, located underneath the deep tissues that can’t be access easily with a liposuction cannula. Liposuction and skin tightening techniques don’t work as they with the fat of other parts of the body.   At what age can a buccal fat excision be performed?
 Candidates for buccal fat removal are patients of all ages. Patients from their 20’s to their 60’s can benefit from buccal fat excision   Does the buccal fat removal procedure hurt? This procedure does not hurt. When performed by Dr. Mesa under local anesthesia you will fill some pulling sensation inside your mouth but no pain.   How is the buccal fat excision surgery performed? Dr. Mesa routinely performs the Buccal Fat Removal procedure at his office-based operating room. Dr. Mesa commonly performs the procedure under pure local anesthesia without any type of sedation (neither oral nor IV sedation). Therefore the procedure is outpatient. Dr. Mesa can perform the procedure under general anesthesia or IV sedation shall he patient requests it. The procedure takes approximately less than one hour from start to finish. Dr. Mesa will place a mouth retractor similar to the one used at the dentist. Then he will make a small incision between inside the mouth near the second molar tooth. Then the incision is gently opened using a surgical scissor. This allows the buccal fat to presents itself between the masticatory muscle called Masseter and the soft tissue of the cheek. Through this incision, Dr. Mesa will gently teased the buccal fat pad out, as it flows freely out of the incision as yolk from an egg. Then Dr. Mesa will meticulously excise an adequate amount of buccal fat, sculpting the cheek to a slender, pleasing contour. Once the Buccal Fat has been excised, the small incision is closed dissolvable sutures. These absorbable sutures allow for proper healing of the incision. The oral incisions heal quickly. Any resulting scars are hidden on the inside of the mouth, completely hidden from view. This is a pictorial explanation of the buccal fat removal procedure performed by Dr. Mesa under local anesthesia. An incision inside the mouth (oral mucosa) next to the top second molar tooth is performed. buccal-fat-removal-opening-inision2   The buccal fat gently teased out through the incision and then excised. buccal-fat-removal-pulling-out-fat2 The small incision is closed with dissolvable stitches. buccal-fat-removal-closing-inision2 How is the recovery after Buccal Fat Removal surgery? There is minimal downtime after a buccal fat excision surgery in 90% of the patients. It’s normal to experience some minimal swelling for few days. The cheeks could appear fuller than before, but this subsides as the swelling goes away. Bruising may occur but is extremely rare. The recovery is also virtually pain free. Most patients are able to return to work or school the next day. You should begin to see thinning in your cheeks within for weeks after your buccal fat removal surgery. in 10% of the patients the swelling is significant and it could last up to one week. In those cases Dr. Mesa recommends to continue icing the cheeks until the swelling subsides. Dr. Mesa will request that you avoid vigorous exercise or activities for one to two weeks after the procedure.   How Much Bruising is There After Buccal Fat Pad Removal? Since the incision is inside the mouth, bruising is minimal and non visible   How soon can I go back to work or school after Buccal Fat excision surgery? Most of the patients undergoing buccal fat removal surgery with Dr. Mesa normally feel good after the procedure and return to work or school as quickly as the next day.   Do I need to stay in the hospital for buccal fat removal surgery? No, you don’t. Buccal fat removal surgery with Dr. Mesa is an outpatient procedure. Therefore you will be able to go home the same day, just right after the operation. Dr. Mesa performs the procedure with pure local anesthesia without oral or IV sedation. Therefore patients can commute themselves safely back and forward to operating without companion, thus keeping the procedure confidential (like when you go to the dentist).   How do I prepare for a Buccal Fat excision surgery? Once the buccal fat removal surgery has been scheduled, Dr. Mesa’s staff will give you complete set of written post-op instructions; these are imperative for proper healing. In general, these are the main points a patient should remember to ensure an smooth procedure and recovery process:

  • Avoid any medications and oral supplements that make the blood thin and therefore increase the risk of bruising (e.g. aspirin, ibuprofen, Motrin, Advil, fish oil, Omega, Multivitamins, etc.)
  • Fill prescriptions for antibiotics before the day of your surgery.
  • Fill out your medical grade oral mouth wash and use it after every meal for one week to avoid food to be trapped close to the incision and decrease the risk of infection.
  • Drink one bottle of Gatorade the night before the surgery and a second one the morning before the procedure ( to make sure you are hydrate with makes the buccal fat removal easier).
  • Avoid eating any hard food like chips, Doritos, crackers, etc., since they could pull the dissolvable stitches inside the mouth.
  • Schedule your two follow-up appointments with Mesa and add these on your calendar so you don’t miss your visits.

What are the potential risks from a Buccal Fat Excision surgery? Buccal Fat Excision (cheek reduction surgery) is extremely safe. Dr. Mesa, a Harvard trained triple fellowship trained and Board Certified Plastic Surgeon performs hundreds of these procedures a year, so he is very skilled to further decrease the risks of any complications. Some of the commonly risks of the procedure are swelling of the cheeks from one few days to a week. Bruising also may occur, especially if patients taking medications or oral supplements that make the blood thin. Some of the rare complications include: bleeding, poor healing, scarring, prolonged swelling and asymmetry.   Should stitches from buccal fat removal be removed? No, stitches don’t need to be removed. Dr. Mesa places dissolvable stitches to close the small incisions made inside the mouth to remove the buccal fat pads. The stitches self-dissolve in about 2 weeks.   How much does Buccal Fat Removal surgery cost? The exact cost depends of several factors like location and type of anesthesia. The cost of the procedure varies if it is done in New York City (Manhattan) or New Jersey. Also the cost varies if you would like it to be performed under local anesthesia or IV sedation. Please call our office to get an estimated quote based on your needs. Our office phone numbers are: NYC: (332) 205-6400, NJ (973) 264-0032   How long the results of Buccal Fat Removal Surgery last? Buccal Fat Removal Surgery results are permanent. Once the buccal fat is removal it never comes back.   When will I see the results of Buccal Fat Excision Surgery? Results start to show up as soon as the third week after the procedure. Final results will become be noticeable generally after six (6) weeks once most of the swelling disappears. Your full results could take up to three or more months to fully settle in.   How soon can I schedule my Buccal Fat Removal surgery? To schedule your procedure you need an initial consultation with Dr. Mesa to determine if you are a candidate for the Buccal Fat Removal surgery. If Dr. Mesa considers you are candidate, your procedure will be scheduled next day. Since the procedure is quite short (under an hour), Dr. Mesa may be able to perform to perform your procedure as soon as next if his schedule allows it.   Will Buccal Fat Removal Surgery affect the parotid gland salivary tube or muscles inside the cheeks like the masseter muscle or pterygoid muscles or? Dr. Mesa is a very skilled Board Certified plastic surgeon that performs hundreds of Buccal fat removal surgeries. During the procedure Dr. Mesa avoids damage to the parotid gland salivary tube or those muscles.   How large is the buccal fat pad? The size of the buccal fat pad varies from patient to patient. Buccal Fat Pads are typically half the size of a Ping-Pong ball or the size of a teaspoon. This amount of fat pad may not seem like much excess, but in the face it is sufficient enough to remove the fullness of the lower cheeks and contour the overall face. buccal-fat-size   Can anything be done to help prevent or decrease the swelling after buccal fat removal surgery? Swelling after buccal fat removal surgery will occur regardless any measurement taken, but it is minimal. Following Dr. Mesa’s post-procedure instructions will further allow decreasing the swelling. Sleeping with the head of bed elevated and wearing the compression bandage around the cheeks until the next day are the most important measures to decrease the swelling.   How long does the buccal fat excision takes? Buccal fat removal is a relatively short procedure and performed in-office. The entire procedure can take as little as 30 minutes to complete, and recovery time is minimal. Different to other surgeons, Dr. Mesa performs the procedure under pure local anesthetic without sedation to ensure patients could commute back and forward to the office driving themselves or using public transportation without the need of a companion to maintain the privacy of the procedure.   Can Buccal Fat Removal Surgery be performed at the same time of other cosmetic procedures? Buccal fat pad removal can be combined with other cosmetic procedures. Dr. Mesa usually performs cheek augmentation with soft tissue filler s ( like Voluma) to enhance the results of the buccal fat remova, surgery. Other cosmetic plastic surgery procedures such as neck liposuction, eyelid lift (blepharoplasty), Fractora facial skin tightening, etc., can be also performed at the same time.   What friends and family will noticed after I get buccal fat removal surgery? People would likely notice that your face looks noticeably thinner and more chiseled. They may wonder if you’ve lost weight recently due to diet and/or excercise.   Will medical insurance pay for Buccal Fat Removal? No. This is a cosmetic procedure and insurance does not cover it. Our office offers financing that does and are happy to provide you with the information in our business office.   Do you offer financing for Buccal Fat Removal Surgery? Yes, Dr. Mesa offers financing. Buccal Far Removal surgery can be paid with cash, all credit cards and cashier cheeks. Dr. Mesa offers medical financing for Buccal Far Removal surgery through two companies: Care Credit and Alpheon Credit.  

I have read/been told that buccal fat removal will make me look older. Is that right?

Doctors who try to criticize buccal fat reduction typically are not familiar with the procedure or are not trained in how to perform buccal fat removal. They will state that as one ages “you need that fat” because “old people all have sunken faces.

Buccal fat removal will not make you old if you have good cheek bones.Cheek bones are the support of the mid and lower face. If the cheek bones are prominent, the face will not look aged after buccal fat removal. However, if the cheek bones are weak and buccal fat removal is performed, the patients may end up looking aged.

Dr. Mesa always evaluate the cheek bones on patients interested in buccal fat removal. If the check bones are weak, he recommends to enhance them with either soft tissue fillers or cheek implants. If the cheek bones are very weak, Dr. Mesa will not perform the buccal fat removal unless the patient enhances the cheek bones ( to prevent aged look after the procedure). Is there any diet restrictions after buccal fat removal? Technically there are no diet restrictions after buccal fat removal. Right after surgery Dr. Mesa recommends not to eat or drink any foot hot in temperature like hot tea, hot coffee, hot sups, etc. for 4 hours after surgery. The reason is that since the mouth is numbed due to local anesthesia (for approximately 4hours) the patient may burn themselves while eating or drinking hot temperature food while the effect of the local anesthetic is still on. After wards, patients may eat any food expect food with hard edges like Doritos, crackers, etc that could “cut” the stitches inside the mouth and therefore cause the surgical wounds to open up.Dr. Mesa does not recommend liquid diet after buccal fat removal surgery since it is unnecessary.   Will Insurance Pay for Buccal Fat Pad Removal? No. This is a cosmetic procedure and insurance does not cover it. Our office offers financing that does and are happy to provide you with the information in our business office.  

Is Dr. Mesa trained to perform buccal fat removal?

Dr. Mesa ’s credentials confirms he is highly trained to perform buccal fat removal. Dr. Mesa is a Harvard trained Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. In addition of his plastic surgery residency training, Dr. Mesa pursued a fellowship sub-specialization in Craniofacial Surgery (reconstruction of the pediatric and adult face) at the prestigious University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Then he pursued a second fellowship sub-specialization in Aesthetic Surgery (cosmetic surgery of the face and body) at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, in Birmingham, Alabama. Therefore he is more than qualified to perform buccal fat removal. Additionally, is extensive experience in buccal fat removal in New York City and New Jersey makes him an buccal fat removal specialist.

  Why not go to a Dentists, Obstetricians, Gynecologists, Internists, Primary Care Physician and “cosmetologists” for Buccal Fat Pad plastic surgery? Practitioners like dentists and other doctors who are not formally residency-trained and Board Certified to perform Buccal Fat Pad Removal Plastic Surgery have been found to suffer a much higher rate of complications, as it’s a side interest to them, and not a treatment they’re certified to do all day long. One of the most common complaints is minimal improvement, asymmetries, “operated look”, etc. Only a licensed professional with the knowledge, training and skills required to achieve optimum results should perform Buccal Fat Pad Removal plastic surgery. Look for a plastic surgeon who is Board Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and who has completed his training at some of the top residency and fellowship institutions.

If you’re tired of your chubby cheeks and want to achieve a slimmer face, please call Dr. John Mesa’s office today to schedule your consultation.

NYC: (332) 205-6400

NJ (973) 264-0032

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