What is a face lift?
A face lift, or rhytidectomy, is a surgical procedure that improves visible signs of aging in the face and neck, such as:
• Sagging in the middle of your face
• Deep creases below the lower eyelids
• Deep creases along the nose extending to the corner of the mouth
• Fat that has fallen or has disappeared
• Loss of skin tone in the lower face that creates jowls
• Loose skin and excess fatty deposits under the chin and jaw can give even a person of normal weight the appearance of a double chin
The loss of youthful contours in the face can be due to a variety of factors, including heredity, gravity, environmental conditions, and stress.
Rejuvenation procedures typically performed in conjunction with a face lift are brow lift, to correct a sagging or deeply furrowed brow, and eyelid surgery to rejuvenate aging eyes.
What a face lift won’t do
As a restorative surgery, a face lift does not change your fundamental appearance and cannot stop the aging process.
A face lift can only be performed surgically; non-surgical rejuvenation treatments cannot achieve the same results, but may help delay the time at which a facelift becomes appropriate and complement the results of surgery.
Facelift risks and safety information
The decision to have a face lift is extremely personal. You will have to decide if the benefits will achieve your goals, and if the risks and potential complications of a face lift are acceptable.
You will be asked to sign consent forms to ensure that you fully understand the procedure and any risks and potential complications.
Facelift risks include:
- Anesthesia risks
- Poor wound healing and skin loss
- Facial nerve injury with weakness
- Temporary or permanent hair loss at the incisions
- Fluid accumulation
- Numbness or other changes in skin sensation
- Persistent pain
- Unfavorable scarring
- Prolonged swelling
- Skin irregularities and discoloration
- Sutures may spontaneously surface through the skin, become visible or produce irritation that require removal
- Unsatisfactory results may include: asymmetry, unsatisfactory surgical scar location and unacceptable visible deformities at the ends of the incisions. (It may be necessary to perform an additional surgery to improve your results)
- Deep vein thrombosis, cardiac and pulmonary complications
These risks and others will be fully discussed prior to your consent. It is important that you address all your questions directly with your plastic surgeon.
If your surgeon uses fibrin sealants (tissue glue)
Fibrin sealants (made from heat-treated human blood components to inactivate virus transmission) are used to hold tissue layers together at surgery and to diminish post-operative bruising following surgery.
This product is carefully produced from donor blood plasma screened for hepatitis, syphilis and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).Cardiovascular and general surgeons have used fibrin sealants in their procedures for many years.This product is thought to be of help in diminishing surgical bleeding by adhering layers of tissue together.
Preparing for face lift surgery:
In preparing for a face lift, you may be asked to:
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• Get lab testing or a medical evaluation
• Take certain medications or adjust your current medications
• Stop smoking
• Avoid taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs, and herbal supplements as they can increase bleeding
Special instructions you receive will cover:
• What to do on the night before and morning of surgery
• The use of anesthesia during your facelift
• Post-operative care and follow-up
A facelift may be performed in an accredited office-based surgical facility, licensed ambulatory surgical center, or a hospital. Be sure to arrange for someone to drive you to and from surgery and to stay with you for at least the first night following surgery.