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Buccal Fat Pad
Connective Tissue

Buccal Fat Pad

Corpus adiposum buccae

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The buccal fat pad is a tubular shaped collection of adipose tissue in the mid-face and represents one of the earliest sites of well-developed fetal adipose tissue deposition (Yousuf et al, 2010).

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Key Features/Anatomical Relations

The buccal fat pad is situated within the buccal space bounded by the buccinator muscle medially, the deep cervical fascia and muscles of facial expression anterolaterally, and the parotid gland posteriorly. Several other structures which lie in close approximation to the fat pad within the buccal space include the parotid duct, salivary glands, facial vessels, buccal artery, and branches of facial and mandibular nerve.

The fat pad can be divided into three lobes, anterior, middle, and posterior.

—The anterior lobe is situated below the zygoma and extends anterior to the buccinator muscle. It has facial nerve branches lying over its capsule.

—The middle lobe lies in the space around the lateral maxilla.

—The posterior lobe is located in the masticatory space and the space around temporalis muscle, down towards the upper rim of the mandibular body. It has four extensions, namely, the buccal process (inferior to the parotid duct), pterygopalatine process (which goes into the pterygopalatine fossa), pterygoid process (extending into the pterygoid space), and temporal process superiorly (Yousuf et al., 2010).

Blood supply to buccal fat pad arises from the anterior deep temporal, buccal, and posterior superior alveolar arteries.


The buccal fat pad helps in suckling, mastication, protection and cushioning of neurovascular bundles, and contributes to facial aesthetics.

List of Clinical Correlates



Yousuf, S., Tubbs, R. S., Wartmann, C. T., Kapos, T., Cohen-Gadol, A. A. & Loukas, M. (2010) A review of the gross anatomy, functions, pathology, and clinical uses of the buccal fat pad. Surg Radiol Anat, 32(5), 427-36.

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