What is a facelift?
A Facelift (Rhytidectomy), from Lin Plastic Surgery in Boston, is a surgical procedure designed to counteract the effects of aging, exposure to the sun or gravity providing a fresh, youthful appearance. This procedure involves tightening of the facial and neck skin as well as removal of excess fat deposits. This procedure may be performed in conjunction with other facial cosmetic procedures to optimize the aesthetic outcome.
What concerns can a facelift fix?
- Sagging skin, muscles, and fat in the face and neck
- Excessive skin and fat in the neck
- Sagging jaw line
- Crease lines along the nose, mouth, and chin
How are facelifts performed?
Small incisions are made just inside the hairline, along the contour in front of the ear, and extending under the earlobe to the backside of the ear and lower scalp. The skin is then stretched and tightened, and any excess is removed. If additional attention is required for the neck line, an incision is made under the chin. Tiny stitches are used to close the incisions and to reduce any chance of scarring. Metal clips or staples may also be utilized at the hairline. This procedure may take several hours. Various techniques can be employed which can be discussed during your initial consultation.
What is the recovery from facelift surgery like?
Immediately following your facelift surgery from Dr. Lin in Boston, MA, bandages are applied to the face to reduce the recovery time and minimize swelling. Rest and limited mobility are recommended to accelerate the healing process and reduce recovery time. Patients may report pain following surgery which can be treated with oral medication. Although the occurrence of complications is rare, patients can reduce the risk of developing potential problems by carefully following the post-operative instructions.
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“Based upon my own experience, Dr. Lin is a very talented and skilled surgeon. He was also very easy and pleasant to work with. He has a calm and reassuring manner about him and encouraged input from me which I appreciated. I would have no hesitation to return to Dr. Lin for future procedures” -Tracey J.
Combining Neck Lift with a Facelift
It’s interesting how many patients focus so much of their attention on the signs of aging they are seeing in their faces. While the sunken cheeks, smile and laugh lines, and other signs of aging on the face are prevalent, they don’t exist in isolation.
People often overlook what’s going on just below the chin — aging on the neck. Unfortunately, the neck can be one of the first areas to show extensive aging through banding on the neck and looseness under the chin. While a facelift with Dr. Lin will address the jowls to a degree, a neck lift is often a good addition to a facelift.
Facelift/Neck Lift FAQs
Recovery times and conditions vary with different types of facelifts. If Dr. Lin includes a neck lift, this won’t change the duration of your recovery, but it will add a couple different aspects. During your consultation, Dr. Lin will discuss your recovery with you. But these are some general aspects of your recovery. Because the skin is lifted away from the underlying tissue, there is a fair amount of tissue trauma with a facelift. After the procedure, your face will be wrapped in bandages and you’ll likely have drainage tubes. This can be mitigated by the use of tissue glue, but in some cases this isn’t an option. There will be extensive bruising and swelling that will last from two to three weeks. The first few days are the hardest, but then you will feel better quickly. Your skin will probably feel tight in the face and neck. You will likely have numbness in areas, as well. This is normal and can last up to a couple months, as the facial nerves adjust to the re-draped skin. With more involved facelift procedures, most patients can return to work by the third week.
For the neck lift portion of your surgery, you will have elastic bandages around your lower face and neck. This will help minimize swelling and bruising. You won’t be able to twist your neck or bend it forward. Unlike most surgeries, with the neck area you do not apply ice, as this can restrict blood flow and damage the recovery of your skin. There isn’t instant gratification with the neck lift portion of this procedure (or with a facelift for that matter). This is due to swelling, which can come and go for a couple months. Sports and strenuous exercise, particularly those that involve any twisting of the neck, will need to wait at least six weeks.
Facelifts/neck lifts are major surgical procedures, and they involve those same risks: excessive bleeding, poor incision healing, infection, and reaction to anesthesia. As for facelifts combined with neck lifts, these are the specific risks:
- Injury to the nerves that control facial muscles (usually temporary)
- Numbness or tingling around the incision areas (temporary)
- Hair loss at the incision sites
- Skin discoloration (rare but can continue for several months)
- Skin healing issues (more common with smokers)
Face & Neck Lift Patient Questions & Testimonials
Dr. Lin’s Research on Neck & Face Lift Procedures
Dr. Lin’s Authored Work on Neck & Face Lift Surgery
Aesthetic Head and Neck Surgery (McGraw-Hill
Plastic Surgery Atlas)