Facial Maxillary Surgery

mouth image by Connfetti from Fotolia.com

Facial maxillary surgery, more commonly known as maxillofacial surgery, combines dental and facial surgery to combat problems with the upper jaw caused by trauma, as well as identifying and treating facial and oral cancers and facial disfigurements.

Maxillofacial surgery may also involve the insertion of dental implants.


The maxilla are two bones that are fused in the middle and form the upper jaw and support the upper teeth. The maxilla also form a part of the nose and the eye sockets. The term "maxillary" refers to something having to do with the jaws, especially the upper jaw, which is made up of the maxilla.

Reasons for Surgery

Maxillofacial surgery is any surgery that involves the face and the upper jaw. This can include removing impacted teeth, inserting dental implants to replace missing teeth, treating fractured cheek and jaw bones, as well as reconstructive and cosmetic surgeries dealing with the jaw and bite disorders (such as extreme underbites and overbites). Due to the large range of reasons for maxillofacial surgery, the actual procedures that occur will be different depending on what the specific surgery is intended to deal with. Your doctor will go over the specifics of any maxillofacial surgery which may be required.

Bite Correction

Overbites and underbites can often be corrected simply through dental surgery. However, if the treatment requires surgical treatment of the jaw bone as well, then maxillofacial surgery may well be involved.

Paediatric Maxillofacial Surgery

Paediatric maxillofacial surgeons deal with many of the same conditions as surgeons trained to work on adults. Because their patients are children, they also operate on cleft palates. Paediatric maxillofacial surgeons also conduct prenatal examinations to determine if their services will be required after birth.


Because maxillofacial surgeries are invasive, some recovery time will be necessary after undergoing any procedure. Many cosmetic surgeries are not covered by health insurance. If you are undergoing a voluntary surgery then check with your insurance company to make sure it will be covered. As with all surgeries, consult your doctor before making any decisions.