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Measures to take after the facelift procedure

December 3, 2020

What is Face-lift Surgery?

The face-lift surgery is also called as rhytidectomy which is a cosmetic procedure to create a younger appearance in your face. It reduces the sagging of skin and jawline and other changes in the shape of your face that occur with age.

Why is Face-lift Procedure done?

The appearance and shape of your face are changed because of normal age-related changes. The skin becomes less elastic and looser, and fat deposits decrease in some areas of the face and increase in others. Some age-related changes in the face that can be reduced with a face-lift procedure include the following:

• Sagging appearance of the cheeks

• Excess skin at the jawline

• Deepening of the fold of skin from the side of the nose to the corner of the mouth

• Sagging skin and excess fat in the neckA face-lift procedure is not a treatment for wrinkles, sun damage, creases around the nose and upper lip, or irregularities in skin color.

What are the risk-factors of Face-lift Procedure?

This procedure can cause complications which can be managed with appropriate care, medication or surgical correction.

The risk includes


It is defined as the collection of blood under the skin that causes swelling and pressure. It is the most common complication of face surgery. Hematoma generally occurs within 24 hours of surgery which is treated promptly with surgery to prevent damage to skin and other tissues.


Scars from this procedure are permanent, but they can be concealed by the hairline and natural contours of the face and ear. Very rarely these incisions can result in raised, red scars.

Nerve Injury:

Nerve injury is very rare but can occur sometimes which affect nerves that control sensation or muscles.

Hair loss:

You might experience temporary or permanent hair loss.

Skin loss:

It is very rare, but this procedure can interrupt the blood supply to the facial tissues which can result in sloughing (skin loss).

How should you prepare for the face-lift Procedure?

Your doctor or plastic surgeon will ask you about your past and current medical conditions, previous surgeries, history of smoking, and alcohol use. Your doctor will perform a physical exam before undergoing any surgery.

Your surgeon will take photos of your face from different angles and will also examine your bone structure, the shape of your face, fat distribution, and quality of the skin to determine the option for face-lift surgery.

Before the face-lift surgery, you should follow the medication directions provided by your surgeon. Your plastic surgeon will ask you to wash your hair and face with a germicidal soap on the day of surgery. Do not eat anything after midnight the night before your face-lift surgery. If your surgery is done as an outpatient procedure than make sure that someone is there to drive you home after surgery and also to stay with you the first night after surgery.

What can you expect from Facial Plastic Surgery?

A face-lift surgery can be done in a hospital or an outpatient surgery.

Before the Procedure

Your surgeon will give your local anesthesia which numbs only part of your body.

During the procedure

A face-lift procedure involves elevating the skin and tightening the underlying tissues and muscles. Fat in your face is sculpted, removed or redistributed and your skin is then re-draped over the newly repositioned contours of the face, excess skin is removed and the wound is stitched.

The incisions for the face-lift procedure depend on the techniques that will be used. Options include

A traditional face-lift incision:

This type of incision starts from the temples in the hairline and ends behind your ears in your lower scalp. An incision might also be made under the chin to improve the appearance of the neck.

A limited incision:

It is a shorter incision which begins in the hairline just above the ear, wraps around the front of your ear, but does not extend all the way into the lower scalp.

Neck lift incision:

It starts in front of the earlobe and continues around the ear into your lower scalp. A small incision is also made under your skin.A face-lift surgery usually takes two to four hours.

After the procedure

After a face-lift surgery, you might experience:

• Mild to moderate pain

• Swelling

• Numbness

• Bruising

• Drainage from the incisions

Contact your surgeon immediately if you feel severe pain, shortness of breath, chest pain, and irregular heartbeats. Incisions will be recovered with bandages that provide gentle pressure to minimize swelling and bruising. A small tube is placed under the skin behind the ears to drain any excess blood or fluid.

For the first few days after the surgery, it is recommended to

• Rest with your head elevated

• Take pain medicines as prescribed by the doctors

• Apply cool packs to the face to ease pain and reduce swelling

A face-lift surgery can give your face a more youthful appearance, but the results are not permanent.  In general, a face-lift last for around ten years, but with age, the facial skin may begin to droop again.

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