Hemifacial prosthesis or midfacial prosthesisExtended epitheses, whether they are hemifacial (left or right side of the face) or midfacial (extended nasal region) are indicated for rehabilitation following an illness (e.g. ablation of a tumour) or following a trauma (accident or burn). A facial prosthesis may in this case be the only rehabilitation option after extensive facial disfigurement. Furthermore, it allows for the site to be monitored in the case of illness.
The aim is to restore and reproduce the section of the face concerned using an epitheses, ensure it is held firmly in place, reproduce the fine delicacy of the surrounding skin and sometimes facilitate wearing glasses. The epitheses must blend in with the contours of the face and finely reproduce the texture and colouring of the skin. The most appropriate and sure means of retention is selected in collaboration with the medical team according to technical feasibility and the patient's wishes. The means of retention available are:
- a bone-anchored prosthesis. Here, attachments are fitted into the bone by the surgeon and magnets placed on the back of the epithesis to hold it in place. This technique means the epithesis is held securely in place, it is easy to put on and easy to clean.
- an adhesive prosthesis. A biological adhesive is used to hold the prosthesis directly against the skin. It is the simplest method of fitting an epithesis and is sometimes temporary while waiting for reconstructive surgery or implants to be fitted.
- self-retentive prosthesis or using a combination of retention methods. Here, the edges of the cavity hold the epithesis which fits snugly into all the surrounding hollows and may sometimes be helped to stay in place using another means of retention.
- frame-mounted prosthesis. This solution is sometimes chosen for extended epitheses when fitting implants is not a feasible option. In this case, the epithesis is attached to glasses using magnets, or else adhesive is used to fix them onto the glasses frame.