ABOUT Lower Facelift
As people age, the effects of gravity, exposure to the sun, and the stress of daily life can be seen in their faces. These changes may include the development of deep lines in the cheeks and around the mouth, loose, excess skin in the cheeks, jaw line, and neck, and banding around the neck. A face lift (technically known as rhytidectomy) is commonly performed on individuals between 45 – 55 years of age, however it can be done successfully on people in their 70’s or 80’s as well.
It can’t “stop aging”,but what it can do is “set back the clock,” by improving the most visible signs of aging; the deep facial wrinkles, sagging jowls,sagging and banding in the neck, & the excess fat ; by tightening underlying muscles, and redraping the skin of your face and neck.
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A facelift procedure may last approximately 4-5 hours, depending on the extent of the surgery and several hours if other procedures are being combined with it. It can be done under local anaesthesia with sedation, however we prefer general anesthesia. We also prefer to hospitalize patients for a day.Certain co morbid conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure should be monitored after surgery, and may require a short inpatient stay.
Facelifts are very individualized procedures. In your initial consultation we will evaluate your face, including the skin and underlying bone, and discuss your goals for the surgery. For example, the lower facelift is usually performed to rejuvenate the lower portion of the face. Age-related changes in the upper and middle region of the face are usually corrected with a forehead lift and mid facelift respectively. A lower facelift can be performed using different types of incisions.Commonly, a single incision is made within the hairline that extends downward around the perimeter of the ear and into the hairline on the backside of the head.The skin is carefully elevated away from the underlying tissues of the lower portion of the face, jaw line, and neck; exposing the SMAS. The SMAS, may be elevated, plicated or excised in which the tissue is augmented and suspended in a higher position with sutures. All the techniques though different, work to lift and tighten the underlying structures of the face.The excess skin is excised to achieve natural contours of the face, and the remainder of the incision is closed with additional sutures. Surgical drains may be left in place.If a neck lift is being performed in conjunction with your facelift, we make a small incision on the underside of the chin through which the platysma muscle in the neck is manipulated. The platysma may be plicated or a portion of it removed in order to reduce the appearance of skin laxity and banding around the neck. Neck liposuction may also be an option to remove fat to further sculpt the area.
A compression garment is tight-fitting, and will help to reduce swelling by preventing fluid build up, as well as provide comfort and support as you heal. They have to be worn for a few weeks. As with any surgical procedure, you will likely experience some pain, bruising, and swelling, most of which will subside within a few weeks. If a surgical drain was used, it will usually be removed within a day following surgery, and non-absorbable sutures may be removed in seven to ten days. You will likely feel well enough to return to work in 1-2 weeks; however you should avoid strenuous activity such as heavy lifting or exercise for up to three weeks to allow your body sufficient time to heal.
When a face lift is performed by a qualified plastic surgeon,complications are infrequent and usually minor. Still, individuals vary greatly in their anatomy, their physical reactions, and their healing abilities, and the outcome is never completely predictable.
Complications that can occur include haematoma (a collection of blood under the skin that must be removed by the surgeon), injury to the nerves that control facial muscles (usually temporary), infection, and reactions to the anesthesia. Poor healing of the skin is most likely to affect smokers.
You can reduce your risks by closely following our advice both before and after surgery
Sameer Karkhanis, MD
Board-Certified Mumbai Plastic Surgeon
Chief Plastic Surgeon & the Director at CCRS is a qualified Aesthetic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon. He is Board Certified, with the qualification of DNB Plastic Surgery (Diplomate of National Board). He is an active member of the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.