Chin Implants, Chin Augmentation

Dr. Pearlman using chin implant tool on woman's face with mirror

Bristol Palin’s chin surgery on Inside Edition

Late last spring I was interviewed by Inside Edition on Bristol Palin’s surgery. To view the video click here:  Inside Edition Palin chin  The producers brought photos for me to comment on her jaw surgery. Ms. Palin reported that she had chin and jaw surgery to correct an abnormal bite; this is called orthognathic surgery. I don’t personally do this type of jaw surgery but sometimes it is necessary to correct an abnormal bite or TMJ (jaw joint) problems that can result from misaligned teeth. As you know, your bite can be very sensitive and even a small change can make a big difference. Even an abnormality the size of a grain of sand can alter awareness of your bite.

Jaw surgery usually has the added benefit of moving the chin forward helping to improve the patient’s profile and align facial features. If Ms. Palin truly had jaw problems, she also aesthetically benefitted from the surgery. Since her surgeon was already there, jaw surgery is sometimes accompanied by a chin implant or sliding the chin bone forward (a sliding genioplasty).

During the interview I was asked if I thought Ms. Palin’s surgery was cosmetic. I said that I could only go by what was released to the press, that she had jaw surgery. However, the consequence of her surgery was also an aesthetic improvement. After being asked the same question three or four different times, they got a sound bite with me saying that the surgery was cosmetic. Well, yes it might have been, but as a consequence of or in conjunction with functional surgery. No matter what, she looks great. The “after” photo makes her look more like a Kardashian than a Palin.

Weak chinks can be improved by chin implants, but may also herald jaw problems that may require corrective jaw surgery
Steven J. Pearlman, MD, FACS