A facelift (rhytidectomy), is a cosmetic procedure designed to smooth out deep lines and wrinkle and tighten saggy skin. The goal is to rejuvenate an individual’s appearance, making it more youthful. A facelift is one of the most well-known and popular of all the cosmetic surgeries.
Individuals that are unhappy with how they are aging, may find that a facelift is the ideal way to turn back the clock from the normal aging process.. A facelift is a very serious procedure and one that a person shouldn’t have done without much thought and consideration. Because it is impossible to reverse plastic surgery it is crucial that an individual is sure about having the surgery performed and has this procedure performed by an experienced and well qualified physician.
Facelift procedures have been around for some time. One of the first ever surgical lifts to have been performed is believed to have occurred in 1901.
For many years, facelifts mostly involved “skin excisions with primary closure.” Subcutaneous facelifts were extremely popular for some time. It wasn’t until l974, until major developments were made. The lower face and neck platysma were elevated without requiring the skin to be attached.
The technology and techniques used today have changed dramatically since face lifting was first introduced over a century ago. Today, it is possible for highly skilled surgeons to achieve very natural looking results.
Facelifts are utilized by both men and women to physically “turn back the hands of time.” It is popular among both sexes. Full facelifts are for older individuals, typically those between the ages of 50 and 65. Anyone younger than this typically won’t require this type of procedure.
During a facelift, a surgeon may tighten (separate or even remove) face muscles and saggy skin. They will also typically get rid of excess skin.
It is very important that the surgeon a person chooses to perform their surgery is experienced and board certified. A facelift is a very serious procedure that carries many risks. Once the procedure has been done, it can very difficult to correct mistakes. Conversely, a good facelift can make a person look and feel more youthful. It can also dramatically improve their confidence.
A facelift will typically last between 10 and 15 years. After this time, some people will want to have another one done.
There are a variety of facelift types and techniques. The Cutaneous (skin only), Traditional, Deep Plane, and Temporal facelifts are some of the most well known and often utilized.
The Cutaneous facelift focuses on the lower portion of the face and the neck. This is the oldest version of the facelift. It doesn’t utilize any tightening of the muscles so there is little risk to them or the nerves, which some people like. However, the results from this type of lift aren’t as long lasting as those in which the underlying muscles are tightened.
With a traditional facelift (SMAS), the lower face and neck are tightened. The underlying muscle layer is repositioned and lifted in the direction of the ears. The muscles are tightened and any excess skin removed.
The Deep Plane facelift is similar to the traditional facelift but with some substantial differences. The surgeon will cut to deeper plane in the face and then lift and reposition the muscles. Parts of the underlying muscle layers will be separated from deeper ones and also some facial structures. This technique is believed by some to provide a more natural result. There are some risks, however. A person has a higher chance of having their facial nerves injured.
A Temporal facelift’s focus is on the eyebrow area. This may be a good option for those individuals looking to raise a droopy brow.
Because facelift techniques vary, the exact procedural steps will differ. However, there are similarities among the techniques. To begin, the surgeon will make the primary incision above the hairline and behind and in front of the ear. A second incision, smaller in size, will typically be made underneath the chin.
The tissue and the skin is separated and excess fat removed, if necessary. The tissue and muscle is then tightened and repositioned. The skin is pulled upward and also tightened. Any excess skin is removed and the incisions sutured close.
Following surgery, a person will experience some pain. This will be managed with pain medications prescribed by the patient’s doctor. Antibiotics will also be prescribed. This is to prevent an infection from developing. It is important for patients to get up and walk around within a few days after surgery. This helps to get the blood circulating and also helps to prevent the formation of blood clots which can occur with a person sits or lay around for too long.
There will be considerable swelling and bruising after a facelift. This is perfectly normal and will eventually subside. Most people will be able to return to work in about two weeks time. After about one month and no more than four, a person should be completely back to normal.
Facelifts can be very expensive. Because it is considered to be an elective procedure, insurance companies won’t cover it. According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery the average cost for a facelift is $6,881. However, it could be as little as $6,000 and as much as $15,000. Surgeons based on the coasts (East and West) are generally more expensive. The surgeon’s qualifications, clientele and reputation will also affect the price of the procedure, as will the technique) being used. The price of a facelift fee will include the surgeon’s, facility and anesthesia fee.
There a number of complications a person who undergoes a facelift might experience. They include infection, disfigurement, scarring, nerve damage, alopecia, skin flap, necrosis and parotid gland pseudocyst. While it is impossible to totally prevent facelift related complications, a person can lessen the likelihood that they occur by having a board certified, experienced and well respected surgeon perform the procedure in an accredited or licensed facility. Following the doctos pre and post op instructions can help decrease problems as well.
Questions to Ask Your Surgeon
1. Am I a good candidate for a facelift?
2. Is there an alternative treatment that might be a better fit?
3. How much will facelift surgery cost?
4. What happens if I’m not satisfied with the results?
5. Does your office offer financing?
6. What happens in the event that an emergency arises?
7. Are you board certified?
8. Has anyone died in your care?
9. Where will the surgery take place?
10. Is the surgical facility licensed and/or accredited?