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Extraction of buccal fat: what it is and what are the risks of surgery

If you are part of Generation Z or have just downloaded TikTok on your smartphoneyou may have already heard of the buccal fat removal. And while the definition of what’s in style is expanding, there’s still a fixation on the conventional: the model profile, the defined jaw, geometric cheekbones, etc. And all this can be achieved with the new surgical tendency Why TikTok is losing its mind: yes, the aforementioned one buccal fat extraction.

Located on either side of the mouth, between the facial muscles, the mouth fat it’s responsible for those chubby cheeks that people think it’s okay to pinch. Although its exact purpose is unknown, medical professionals have theorized that the mouth fat it exists to help us swallow all that mush as kids or to protect important muscles from injury or trauma. In any case, people want to get rid of it, since less fat on the cheeks means more angles to take a selfies.

What is buccal fat extraction?

Getting a chiseled face comes at a cost.

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Plastic surgeon Naveen Cavale, from the Royal Battersea Clinic, explains that this insurgical intervention is increasingly popular: “The buccal fat extraction does what it says on the tin. It involves removing some of the fat from the buccal fat pad, a tissue that lies deep in the cheek,” explains Cavale, “and the reason some people opt for this surgery is to give a more chiselled, with more definition around the cheekbones”.

Cavale believes that the Yassify culture—the filter that magically transforms us into Khloe Kardashian—has fueled this beauty trend: “I think that social networks and filters in particular have had a great impact. I classify this type of surgery with some of the others surgeries ‘in fashion’ that have become all the rage in recent years, such as the facelift fox-eyed, which has also been promoted by social networks. In addition, it has gained popularity because some celebrities have mentioned that they have undergone the operation. I think Chrissy Teigan shared with her followers on her Instagram that she had the procedure last year.”

Are there risks?

However, it is not a cosmetic procedure 15 minutes that only consists of clicking and filling. The buccal fat extraction it is invasive. “If it’s being done as a stand-alone procedure, an incision would be made on the inside of the cheek and the fat would be removed,” Cavale explains. “I am not in favor of doing this, since you can risk damaging nearby structures such as salivary glands and nerve endings. I don’t do it as an independent procedure”.

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