Facial trauma

The bones of your face can be damaged by a motor vehicle accident, an assault, a sporting injury or fall

Occasionally disease or infection can weaken facial bones.

After trauma, early assessment and intervention is necessary as an overlooked fracture can affect how your face looks. Whether or not surgery is required for your facial fracture depends on the extent of the fracture, whether it’s affecting your physical functioning and whether it impinges on vital structures.

Sometimes, for less severe injuries, it may be better to wait and let the injury heal by itself.

Dr van Mourik can provide advice and also repair both simple and complex facial trauma injuries including:

  • Fractured cheekbone (zygoma)
  • Fractured upper jaw (maxilla)
  • Fractured lower jaw (mandible)
  • Fractured nose
  • Fractured frontal sinus

How the surgery is performed

Dr van Mourik performs facial trauma surgery in private hospital under general anaesthetic administered by a specialist anaesthetist. The anaesthetist is also in charge of providing your post-surgery pain relief.

Dr van Mourik will need to rebuild the fractured area using screws and plates to hold the bones together until they heal. The screws and plates are generally left in place.

Incisions are placed inside your mouth or in in natural facial creases to minimise visible scars.

Recovery after facial trauma surgery

Hospital stay: You’ll most likely need to spend between 1 and 2 days in hospital.

Pain management: To control pain while you’re in hospital, you’ll be given intravenous analgesia, prescribed by the anaesthetist, which you can self-administer by pressing a button. Usually by 48 hours after the operation, pain tablets such as Nurofen® or Panadeine Forte® are sufficient to keep you comfortable.

Work/School: You’ll need to allow approximately 1 week off work, maybe less depending on the severity of the fracture.

Stitches: Dissolving stitches are used in most cases. They gradually dissolve over 3 to 4 weeks.

Diet: After a jaw fracture you’ll need a soft food diet for 4 to 6 weeks.

Follow up care: Dr van Mourik will want to see you periodically after the surgery to monitor your healing.

Complete healing can take 4 to 6 months.

Dr Van Mourik will give you detailed post-operative instructions during your pre-surgery consultation. To maximise your chance of making a quick recovery without complications, please pay careful attention to these instructions. General information can be found on the Post-op and Patient Care page.

Dr van Mourik is a highly experienced Oral and Maxillofacial surgeon. He explains things clearly and he’s a good listener, so do ask him questions about your facial trauma surgery and tell him about any concerns you have — he’ll take the time to answer and manage your concerns sensitively.

Dr Kristian van Mourik Logo White

(02) 9416 4809


Suite 5, 12 Tryon Rd, Lindfield 2070, NSW

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