Meet Dr. Thomas Buonassisi, Board Certified Facial Plastic Surgeon

As one of Canada’s top cosmetic facial surgeons, Dr. Thomas Buonassisi leads the team at 8 West Cosmetic Surgery & Skin Clinic and carries extensive experience, having performed facial cosmetic surgery for over 20 years. Dr. Buonassisi has travelled the world to train with renowned experts in the field, working closely with top surgeons in the United States and Australia.

What makes Dr. Buonassisi one of the most respected and well-known facial cosmetic surgeons?

  • Board Certification in Facial Plastic Surgery
  • American Board of Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
  • American Board of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery
  • Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada
  • Over 20 Years Experience
  • Thousands of Facial Cosmetic Surgeries Performed
  • RealSelf Verified Surgeon
  • Voted 2018, 2019, 2020 Best Cosmetic Surgeon in Vancouver

Being an expert in his field, Dr. Thomas Buonassisi has performed thousands of facial cosmetic procedures and has honed his surgical skills into an artform.


Benefits of Buccal Fat Removal

For those who genetically have fuller cheeks, or who simply wish to diminish the appearance of chubbier cheeks, Buccal Fat Removal is a safe and effective surgery, immediately resulting in:

  • Less puffy cheeks
  • More symmetrical cheeks
  • More defined cheeks
  • A slimmer cheek to chin line (V-line)
  • A more heart-shaped facial appearance

Buccal Fat Removal is a quick, minimally invasive procedure that is pain-free with little downtime, and no visible scarring. One of the common questions on patients’ minds is, “is buccal fat removal permanent?” The great news is that your newly defined, slimmer cheeks will remain that way for good! Even if you gain weight, your buccal fat pads won’t grow back.

If you feel that your face and cheeks are overly round, Buccal Fat Removal surgery may be the right procedure to slim and sculpt the lower third of the face, giving you permanent, contoured results that you’ll love.

How Buccal Fat Removal Surgery is Performed

Buccal Fat Removal is a minimally invasive surgical procedure done under local anesthetic, which many compare to a dental procedure, as you will be in a reclined position with your mouth open. Because the surgery is performed from inside your mouth, there is no visible incision, stitches, or scarring on your face.

Dr. Thomas Buonassisi expertly performs this surgery by carefully making small incisions on the inside of the cheeks, just above the upper molars. The tissues of the cheek are then gently separated to expose the buccal fat pads, which is where Dr. Buonassisi will perform a bulk of the procedure.

He will then expertly decrease the fullness of the cheek by removing a portion of fat in the precise amount that best suits your individual goals. Once the desired amount of fat has been removed from the buccal fat pad, he will finish the procedure by sealing the incisions with stitches to complete the procedure.


How Long Does it Take to Recover from Buccal Fat Removal surgery?

As Buccal Fat Removal is a minimally invasive procedure, the downtime and recovery is very little. Visible results after Buccal Fat Removal are immediate, but patients should expect a normal amount of post-operative swelling for 7 to 10 days after surgery.

Patients can typically resume their usual activities, but most take a few days before returning to work or social activities to allow for most of the swelling to subside. Full results of your procedure are usually seen after 2 to 3 months post-surgery as your skin settles into the newly hollowed area where the buccal fat once was.


Who is a Candidate for Buccal Fat Removal surgery?

The first thing we typically do to help assess your candidacy is to do what we colourfully refer to as a “duck pout test” or a “fish face test”. We will ask you to suck in your cheeks as if doing a duck pout or a fish face; if you can feel your cheek fat in-between your jaws, this means you are likely a candidate for surgery.

People with prominent buccal fat pads often describe themselves as having “chubby cheeks.” While sometimes this can be the result of being overweight, the size of the buccal fat pads may be genetic. How do you know if you’re a good candidate for Buccal Fat Removal? Buccal Fat Removal surgery may be right for you if you have any of these concerns:

  • Puffy, full cheeks
  • Asymmetrical cheeks
  • Round cheeks that don’t decrease in size with weight loss

Ideal Buccal Fat Removal candidates are typically aged 25 years and older, as by this age the face will usually have slimmed out naturally. If you find that you are above this age and still have full cheeks, Buccal Fat Removal surgery may be a wonderful facial contouring option for you.

What’s Covered in Your Pre-Assessment Call

Step 1: Request Your Complimentary Pre-Assessment Call with the 8 West Clinic Team

A pre-assessment call is a complimentary service that is required for anyone considering Buccal Fat Removal surgery. In your session with a patient care manager, they will conduct a photo review with yourself and Dr. Buonassisi on your behalf to confirm that you are a candidate for the procedure. They will also discuss the surgery cost, timeline, and process, as well as any other options that Dr. Buonassisi may have suggest to achieve your desired results.


Step 2: Schedule Your Consultation with Dr. Buonassisi

Meet Dr. Buonassisi in person (or online if you are an out-of-town patient) for expectations setting. The surgical consultation is by far the most important part of the cosmetic surgery process because this is the communication tool that helps explain what can be achieved in surgery.

You may ask Dr. Buonassisi to share real patient Before and After photos to help illustrate what can be achieved with the particular surgery you are discussing. This is also your opportunity to ask him any questions.


Step 3: Schedule Your Surgery and Receive Ongoing Care in Follow Up Visits

Our team of medical professionals and patient care managers are here to make your experience a smooth, informative and positive one. We manage all the details of your surgery and schedule a series of follow-up appointments to ensure you are healing well and are happy with your results! We are here to help answer all your questions about recovery.


Learn More with a Pre-Assessment Call

The decision to proceed with Buccal Fat Removal surgery should be made with the utmost level of care and attention. While it can be exciting to think about how you may look with Buccal Fat Removal, it is important to be informed about both the risks and benefits of surgery.

The pre-assessment discussion is a complimentary service with our award-winning, knowledgeable and friendly patient care team, which we recommend to anyone considering any surgery. This service includes a review of your photos to help determine if Buccal Fat Removal surgery is right for you, plus a discussion of costs and possible surgery dates on top of any other questions you may have before you decide if you are ready to meet Dr. Thomas Buonassisi in person.