Genioplasty (Chin surgery)

Chin recontouring

The chin varies widely between males and females, so it can be extremely important in gender recognition. Chin recontouring is often combined with a jaw reduction and important part of facial feminization surgery.

FAQs about this procedure

Gender of the chin

Male chin

  • Square appearance
  • Higher

Female chin

  • Tapered appearance
  • Less high

Female chins tend to merge together to the centre of the chin. Men’s tend to have two points directly below the canine teeth and a flat part between the points. This makes men’s chins look fuller and more square. Women’s tend to be more tapered.

Male chins also tend to have more vertical height, with more space between the lower lip and the base of the chin.

In some cases, male chins have a vertical crease in the middle, usually known as cleft chin, something that is highly unlikely for women.

Chin and facial harmony

While tastes do differ there are a number of guidelines of what the characteristics are of an aesthetically pleasing face.  In profile view the face should have a slight degree of convexity.

The profile of a patient can be significantly altered with a genioplasty (chin recontouring surgery). This, in turn, has a significant effect on overall facial harmony.

FFS Chin Recontouring

Ideal facial convexity

FFS Chin Recontouring

Lack of facial convexity

Facial Feminization Chin Recontouring

Excess of facial convexity


Feminizing the chin

Luckily, the chin is an area whose features can all be modified: height, width and if necessary even projection. It is possible to make various modifications to a chin depending on the individual anatomy of each patient, and the desired result.

This chin recontouring surgery is called a “sliding genioplasty”. The chin is cut from front to back, separating a horseshoe-shaped segment of bone. A slice of this segment can be removed. This will reduce the height of the chin. The middle part of the horseshoe-shaped bone can be removed to narrow the chin. The chin can also be moved forwards or backwards to correct a receding or protruding chin (if necessary).

Procedure genioplasty (chin recontouring surgery)

    • General anesthesia
    • Incision—Incisions are all made intraorally, so there will be no scars visible on the outside.

      Incision genioplasty

    • Sawing—The chin is cut from back to front on both sides with a saw, separating a horseshoe-shape of bone.

      Cutting chinplasty

    • Height reduction—A second cut can be made parallel to and a few millimetres from the first one, and a slice of bone can be removed.

      Height reduction chinplasty

    • Width reduction—The middle part of the horseshoe-shaped bone can be removed to make the chin more pointed.
    • Chin advancement or setback—The final position of the piece of bone is chosen. At this point the chin can be moved forwards or backwards.

      FFS Chin Recontouring

      Chin setback

      FFS Chin Recontouring

      Chin advancement

    • Fixation—The bone parts are fixed using titanium miniplates and screws, which will never be removed.

      titanium screws chinplasty

  • Suturing—The wound is closed with self-dissolving stitches.

Recovery of a genioplasty (chin recontouring surgery)

  • Hospitalisation— Most patients will spend one night in the hospital after their surgery.
  • Compression Bandage— A bandage will be put over the chin to reduce hematoma. It can be removed on the next day.
  • Swelling— The swelling is comparable to the swelling after jaw surgery.
  • Numbness—Most patients experience temporary numbness.
  • Work and sports— If you don’t mind being seen with the swelling, you may be able to return to your social activities 7 to 10 days after the surgery. You will have to wait until the fourth week before doing any hard work or physical exercise.

Complications of genioplasty (chin recontouring surgery)

  • Infection— Infections are possible but rare.
  • Numbness— Partial numbness of part of the jaw because of mental nerve damage (is rare but possible).
  • Asymmetry—Even though the surgeon marks very carefully the areas he is going to operate, there may be asymmetries. They can always be corrected afterwards.


FAQ before operation

Sometimes I get asked to model during a photoshoot. How long should I wait to book one after my FFS?

That is a very difficult one. It depends very much upon your healing and we can’t give you any guarantee about how long it takes before you look good enough for a photoshoot.
It could be 4 months, but it could also be a year. Of course it also depends on the amount of work that has been done.

What does this procedure cost?

If you want you can send us good pictures together with your ideas so we can send you a financial and operative proposal. To receive a proposal, please fill in the proposal request online and pay the proposal fee of 50 euro through Paypal.

Of course you are always welcome for a consultation.

How many mm can the chin be put forward?

The maximum amount a chin can be put forward is aboout 10-12mm.  But if you need so much, it’s probably also the whole underjaw that is too much to the back so you probably need orthognatic surgery. 

With a chin height reduction is there significant sagging of the skin around the chin?

Of course there will be relatively more skin around the chin after a bony reduction of the chin. A hanging chin can however be avoided by meticulous suturing of the muscles of the chin and by wearing of the facemask that Dr van de Ven will provide you with after the surgery for 3 weeks. The facemask gives a strong upward support to the chin. If in spite of these measures the skin is still sagging around the jaw and chin (this happens mostly in elderly patients with less elastic skin) one of the 3 types of facelift that Dr van de Ven performs can bring the solution.

Is it possible for the lower lip to move upwards after a chin height reduction? Does the smile change?

Yes, if you reduce the height of the chin and you suture the muscle well, the lower lip moves upwards.

Is it safe for titanium screws staying inside my body for long term?

Yes it is. Two of the greatest benefits of titanium are its high strength-to-weight ratio and its corrosion resistance. Couple this with its non-toxic state and its ability to fight all corrosion from bodily fluids and it’s no wonder titanium has become the metal of choice within the field of medicine. Titanium is also incredibly durable and long-lasting. In principal they are not removed anymore and stay in the body. Only in case of an infection on the plates (rare) they will have to be removed.

Another benefit to titanium for use in medicine is its non-ferromagnetic property, which allows patients with titanium implants to be safely examined with MRIs and NMRIs.

Can I get this surgery if I’m a cis woman?

Yes, of course. We perform Facial Feminization Surgery on all women. Every woman is welcome at our clinic!

When can I go back to a tanning bed after a chin and/or jaw recontouring

When all blue stains have completely disappeared, after about 3 weeks approximately.

When fully healed will the jaw have the same strength as the previous jaw, or does having the jaw shaved make it permanently weak or prone to be damaged easier?

As only bone will be removed from the outside of the jaw and chin, which will give it a feminine shape, the jaw will be no weaker than the jaw and chin of a genetic woman.
A real severe trauma will be necessary to break it. For sure no reasons to worry.
In case the chin needs to be advanced the chin will be separated from the jaw and fixated with screws in it’s new position. In that case the jaw will be weaker in the midline for a period of about 6 weeks. But the screw fixation is so strong that even in these cases a real trauma will be necessary to make the jaw break.

Can a chinplasty or jaw recountouring be performed when you have dental implants in that region?

Dental implants normally have a maximum length of 14mm. Natural teeth are longer. That’s why dental implants never create problems during a chinplasty or jaw recontouring.

Can dental implants still be inserted after a recontouring of jaw and chin?

The removal of bone will be done at the lower border of the jaw, far away from the teeth. So dental implants can be inserted after just as before.

Can I get this surgery if I’m a cis woman?

Yes, of course. We perform Facial Feminization Surgery on all women. Every woman is welcome at our clinic!

Does bone grow back once it has been cut or shaved down?

In our experience no bone has ever grown back.

FAQ after operation

Is it safe to perform an MRI after FFS?

Yes, we use very small titanium screws and plates which are never a problem for an MRI. Also the bonecement does not contain metal.

Will I be able to eat?

If you haven’t had any treatment involving your teeth a sliding genioplasty or orthognathic surgery, you’ll be able to eat normally quite soon. Due to the effects of general anesthesia, you should only feel nausea for the first few hours. You may prefer to eat softer or pureed foods initially if you have intra-oral sutures. Patients should prepare accordingly in advance and purchase juices, yoghurt and soups to have during for the first few days after surgery.
After a sliding genioplasty you should be very careful not to put too much force on the lower jaw e.g. by eating raw meat (steak) or biting an apple. The jaw is really weak in the chin area and it will take about 6 weeks until it has regained it’s original strength.

What happens with the stitches in my mouth?

They dissolve in 5 – 7 weeks. They don’t have to be removed. If they would still be in your mouth after 7 weeks you can easily remove them just by pulling as they will immediately break.

How can I expect the feeling in my chin and lower lip to be after a chinplasty?

After a chinplasty the feeling in the lower lip and chin is always disturbed. If the mental nerve (that comes out of the jawbone just behind the chin and then runs into the lower lip and skin of the chin) has not been ruptured during the surgery, for sure sensitivity will come back. It is not possible however to predict when and to which extent. Mostly the recovery will take between several weeks and several months but it can take up to even 2 years. It is normal that sensitivity of lower lip and chin doesn’t recover completely.

If the mental nerve has been ruptured (in the hands of Dr Bart van de Ven around 1%) it can be sutured. Of course the prognosis will then be worse. Damage to the mental nerve will however not be visible to the outside world as it is a 100% sensory nerve. It doesn’t contain motor branches so function of any muscle is not involved.

Is it safe to perform an MRI after FFS?

Yes, we use very small titanium screws and plates which are never a problem for an MRI. Also the bonecement does not contain metal.

You still have another question? Feel free to ask! We will answer your question and if generally applicable add it to the FAQ of this page.

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