Facial Prosthesis Fitting Process
Steps 1 & 2: Performed by Plastic Surgeon or Maxillo-Facial Surgeon
Steps 3, 4 & 5: Performed by the Maxillo-Facial Prosthetist
The surgical steps and prosthesis manufacturing process for an ear and nose prosthesis is for the most part identical.
Step 1: Placement of osseointegrated implant.
Once all injured or diseased soft tissue is removed, the osseointegrated implant is placed into healthy bone and the soft tissue and skin closed over it. The implants are left undisturbed for a period of 6 – 12 weeks to allow for the ‘’integration’’ of the implant into the bone.
Step 2: Placement of the implant abutments to the osseointegrated implants.
These abutments vary in lengths and the correct length is placed on each implant to allow it to protrude and sit clear of all soft tissue. Different attachments can be placed on the abutment extensions, depending on the method of attachment required. The soft tissue is allowed to heal for 4 – 6 weeks before the silicone prosthesis manufacturing process (step 3) can commence.
Step 3: (Day 1) A silicone impression is taken of the defect area.
This will allow the laboratory model to be manufactured on which the prosthesis will be manufactured. During the same consultation, the silicone will from which the prosthesis is to be made will be mixed in the appropriate colours.
Step 4: (Day 2) The prosthesis is manufactured in the prosthetic laboratory with the pre-coloured silicone.
Step 5: (Day 3) The prosthesis is fitted to the patient.
Some external colouring of the prosthesis can be done to further enhance the natural appearance. The manufacturing of the prosthesis itself (Step 3, 4 and 5) is generally done over a period of 3 days.