The first signs of aging appear on the face.
The facelift, also known as rhytidectomy, enable the solving of the problems related to drooping skin on the face and neck, by removing excess fat and "stretching" the tissues beneath the skin. Thus your face regains a young and fresh look. The facelift may or may not be accompanied by a neck lift. In general, in order to get the best possible aesthetic results, the facelift must be performed together with a neck lift.
Frequently asked questions
What are the indications for a successful face lift?
Patients with an age between 40 and 60 are the ones who benefit most from a facelift. Good results are also obtained for cases of older people. Facial defects that are treated by the face lift procedure are:
- pronounced nasolabial folds,
- loss of well-defined jaw line,
- deep wrinkles and sagging cheek skin,
- saggy skin and wrinkles at neck level.
What does the examination consist of?
You must be prepared to provide complete information to your surgeon concerning:
- previous surgeries,
- other present or past pathologies,
- other treatments followed,
- medication taken, including food supplements and natural remedies.
If you are overweight and planning to be on a diet, weight loss may affect the final result. Your doctor will examine your bone structure and underlying tissues, texture and elasticity of the skin and the severity of wrinkles and facial folds. You will be explained where the incisions will be made and you will be presented the entire surgery plan. You will also be informed about other procedures that may occur during the face lift operation:
- forehead lift,
- eyelid surgery,
- nose correction,
- chemical peels or laser resurfacing for fine wrinkles
What does the surgery consist of?
There are several technical options for the face lift surgery. Usually the incision is hidden by the natural contour of the ear and by the hair. A small incision under the chin may be required in order to remove fat deposits and the fibrosis of the neck muscles can be smoothed. The tissues underneath the skin are detached and the skin excess is removed, then suture is made in place. In some cases deeper tissues are repositioned, so as to give the face a more tonic look.
How do I need to prepare for the surgery?
Once the date for the surgery is set, you will receive instructions regarding pre- and post-operative periods:
- avoid certain medications that may complicate the surgery or recovery: aspirin, other NSAIDs, anticoagulants etc
- stop smoking,
- let your hair grow so that it can cover incision areas during the healing process.
You will receive pre- and post-operative medication so that you feel comfortable at all times. The face lift surgery is performed under general anesthesia or local anesthesia with intravenous sedation. You will be monitored preoperatively, throughout the surgery and throughout the recovery period.
What will I look like and how will I feel immediately after the surgery?
You will have dressings applied to the areas where incisions were performed. There are often suction drainage tubes inserted in the cheek area, such tubes being equipped with collectors at their ends. Discomfort is usually minimal, pain can be easily controlled by medication prescribed by your doctor.
Although healing is a process that varies from person to person, we can draw a generally valid line, as follows:
- You have to stay in bed with the head resting on several pillows in order to minimize bruising and facial edema (face swelling).
In the first week:
- Face swelling reaches a maximum and then gradually decreases
- The suture material is removed
- You can resume light daily activities but you must continue to sleep with the head in an elevated position.
- You can start using makeup again
After two weeks:
- most bruises disappear
- you can resume all your activities .
After six weeks:
- you can resume physical exercise,
- facial swelling gradually diminishes
- skin sensitivity returns to normal in most cases. Sometimes areas of anesthesia may persist for several months.
UV exposure must be avoided throughout the healing period and protective creams must be used on a long term.
A number of factors including heredity and lifestyle play an important role in the longevity of the results. Although the aging process continues, most patients are very satisfied with the achieved results for long periods of time.
Throughout the healing period you will benefit by several examinations, the healing being thus monitored by your surgeon, and meanwhile you will have the opportunity to get answers to all your questions. It is important to keep in touch with your surgeon several months after the facelift surgery.
Although the treatment is very efficient, 1% of the patients do not achieve the desired results!