Blunt force trauma to the face is a medical emergency

Facial trauma, or maxillofacial trauma, is an injury to any part of the face, including the jaw, cheekbone, eye socket or forehead. Most often facial trauma occurs as a result of blunt force, such as from a fall or car accident, or from a sports injury. Severe facial injuries require immediate medical treatment. Please be sure to go to the nearest emergency room for care.

Signs, symptoms and diagnosis of facial trauma

A blow to the face usually results in visible signs of injury such as swelling or bruising, missing teeth, or an uneven appearance around the eyes or nose.

Symptoms may include pain and bleeding, problems with vision, difficulty breathing, and numbness of areas of the face.

Your doctor will examine your nose, mouth, eyes and other areas for cuts, wounds, and bleeding, and will also feel the face for changes in bone structure as well as your ability to move your face and head naturally. The doctor may also order a CT scan of your head to rule out any internal bleeding and to further examine the facial bones for signs of fracture.

Depending on your condition and the results of your physical exam and tests, surgery may be recommended to help ensure healing, and to minimize scarring and deformation.

Main Line Health physicians and maxillofacial surgeons are highly skilled in diagnosing and treating facial trauma. In addition, two of our four hospitals—Lankenau Medical Center and Paoli Hospital—are Pennsylvania Trauma Systems Foundation state-accredited level II trauma centers.

To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Main Line Health, call 1.866.CALL.MLH (1.866.225.5654) or use our secure online appointment request form.