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Facelift, also known as rhytidectomy, is a surgical procedure to correct noticeable signs of facial aging. This procedure can reduce the appearance of jowls on the lower face, creasing under the lower eyelids or along the nose, loose skin under the chin, or midface sagging. A facelift is sometimes combined with brow lift or eyelid lift surgery to rejuvenate the eyelids and eyebrows as well. While a facelift can turn back the signs of facial aging, it will not stop the natural aging process.
Several incision options exist for facelift surgery; these options include traditional facelift, limited incision facelift and neck lift.
The incision of a traditional facelift begins at the temple, goes around the ear and ends at the bottom of the scalp. Once the incision is made, fat is restructured across the face and neck, tissues beneath the skin are relocated and facial muscles are lifted. The skin is then pulled over the newly restructured face and any extra skin is trimmed.
A limited incision facelift creates a series of small incisions that start at the temple, circle the ear, and end in either the lower eyelid or upper lip. Once the incisions have been made, the skin is pulled, trimmed and relocated in the same manner as a traditional facelift.
A neck lift is done to address signs of aging under the chin. Its incision typically begins in front of the ear lobe, goes behind the ear and ends at the bottom of the scalp. As with a traditional or limited incision facelift, skin under the chin is then repositioned and removed.
Patients considering a facelift must be in good health and not smoke. They should be considering surgery for personal goals and not based on someone else’s pressuring. Patients must have realistic expectations about facelift surgery and its results. Meeting with a plastic surgeon will help patients determine whether their goals can be achieved with a facelift.
During a facelift consultation, your plastic surgeon will examine your face and review your medical history. Certain conditions and medications may place individuals at a higher risk of postoperative complications; it is therefore important to honestly discuss your medical history. If you do qualify for facelift surgery, your plastic surgeon will explain their surgical approach, schedule you for surgery, and answer any questions you may have about the procedure. You will be provided with specific preoperative and postoperative instructions; to ensure a successful procedure and recovery, be sure to follow them closely.
Facelift surgery lasts between two and four hours and is performed using general anesthesia or intravenous sedation. Once the anesthetic has taken effect, incisions are made and the skin is relocated, lifted and trimmed. When the procedure is complete, the incisions are closed with stitches or skin adhesives.
Results are often noticeable within a few weeks after facelift surgery. As the healing process continues, these results will likely progress. Depending on each patient’s specific goals, the results of their facelift may either be subtle or dramatic.
Most patients return home the same day as their facelift procedure. For the first two weeks after surgery, patients will experience bruising and swelling. After a week, stitches are removed and patients may wear makeup to conceal any residual bruising. Facial numbness may occur for the first few months after facelift surgery. For the first few weeks after surgery, lifting, bending and exercise are to be avoided, as these activities may cause bleeding.
As will all surgical procedures, there are certain risks associated with facelift surgery. These may include adverse reactions to the anesthesia, infection, hair loss at the incision site(s), persistent pain, asymmetry, and skin loss. To minimize the occurrence of complications, always choose a board-certified plastic surgeon for your procedure.
To find out if facelift surgery is right for you, contact us today to schedule a consultation with our board-certified plastic surgeon. Our offices are conveniently located throughout Queens, NY, Long Island, NY, New York City, and Bergen County, NJ.