The buccal fat pad is an often overlooked part of the facial aging process. The buccal fat pad sits high in the cheek just in front of the ear when we are first born and is designed to help us suckle as an infant. Unfortunately over time, this fat pad descends into the lower cheek and makes our jowls worse. It is often referred to a “walnut” in the cheeks or chipmunk cheeks.
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We often see patients from outside facilities who have a face lift recently and complain about persistent jowls after their surgery. This is often due to the buccal fat pad and can easily be removed to improve the results without having to redo a previous surgery. These can be taken out through a small incision on the inside of the cheek so there is no scar externally at all.