We have been performing facelifts for almost 25 years and are pleased to say we have continued to “tweak” our technique to get better results all the time. Despite the explosion of non-invasive procedures in our practice as well as nationwide, including Botox, fillers, laser treatments, chemical peels, and others, there still many patients who simply have excess skin and sagging features that are not adequately corrected by these treatments. The facelift remains an excellent and often times the only way to correct these kind of problems.
While we are big fans of short scar facelifts (see our section on this website on the Refresh Lift) sometimes these types of lifts cannot adequately correct excessive skin, particularly in the neck. Although a traditional facelift is a more extensive procedure than the short scar lift, the amount of improvement which can be achieved in patients with significant skin excess is greater.
Traditional facelift vs. a short scar lift- which do you need?
In general, patients with mild to moderate skin excess and sagging in the face and neck are better candidates for a short scar lift while those with greater degrees of skin laxity require a full facelift. We can help you determine which would be better for you at the time of your consultation.
One type is not “better” than the other. However, one type may be better for you than the other. It is important to select the right operation that fits your problem and your needs.
At your initial consultation we will evaluate your face, review your photographs, and discuss ways we can achieve the look you want. In addition to a facelift, we may discuss other procedures such as upper and lower lid blepharoplasty, injectable fillers, fat transfer, Botox, skin procedures, etc. that could improve the overall result you see with your facelift. We will review the procedure, showing photographs and diagrams on how it is performed, and come up with an operative plan that suits your needs. Of course, we will ask you about your overall health history and medications to make sure we can do the operation safely. If you have certain medical conditions we may need to contact your primary physician prior to surgery for medical clearance.
The procedure is performed in the operating room at the Lawrence Surgery Center under either a general anesthetic or local anesthesia with sedation. It typically takes around four hours, but may take longer if other procedures are added (blepharoplasty, etc.). After the procedure, you are placed in a head wrap type dressing that will remain in place until the following day when we exchange it for a lighter dressing. Patients usually stay at the surgery center for 1-2 hours after surgery then are discharged home. Pain afterward is mild to moderate and is controlled by oral pain medication.
Pain is generally mild to moderate after the operation, requiring patients to take pain pills for 1-3 days. Nearly all patients experience swelling or bruising after the surgery, which may take a few weeks to resolve. Skin sutures are removed after 7-14 days. Makeup may be worn shortly after surgery to cover any bruising. Most patients wait 10-14 days before returning to work and vigorous exercise.
Facelifts address one of the most obvious features of aging- sagging facial tissue. However, they don’t address two other important aspects of aging- a deterioration of skin quality (elasticity, pigmentation, thickness,etc) and volume loss in the face. We will discuss with you the importance of a good skin care regimen and arrange for a complimentary consultation with one of our aestheticians, our experts in skin care. You may also benefit from volume supplementation with injectable fillers or your own fat at the time of surgery or afterward if you lack fullness, particularly in the cheeks and lips. These procedures will help enhance your overall result of your facelift.
Over 125,000 facelifts were performed in the U.S. in 2015. 99% of these were in patients over 40.
5 Reasons why you should have your facelift performed at Lawrence Plastic Surgery:
- Experience– We have been performing and perfecting this procedure for over 20 years and have the happy patients to prove it
- Accredited facilities– We perform our facelifts at the Lawrence Surgery Center, an accredited facility with an experienced, knowledgeable and friendly staff
- Safety– We place your safety above all else. We have given educational talks at national conferences the avoidance of significant complications associated with plastic surgery and place your safety above all else
- Surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery
- Great staff and office environment– Our experienced staff, including a Certified Plastic Surgery nurse, and two experienced aestheticians, work alongside your surgeon every step of the way to give you not just a great operation but a great experience