A brow lift, also known as a forehead or upper face lift, is a surgical procedure that helps minimize creases, wrinkles and lines that have, overtime, developed across the forehead and in the space between the eyes, atop the bridge of the nose.
It is a good option for individuals concerned about frown lines, and/or who want to lift a sagging or low sitting brow. Let’s look at what a brow lift is and then dive into how PRP can help when getting a brow lift.
History of Brow Lift
Brow lift surgeries have been around for quite some time. It is not a new cosmetic procedure. Erich Lexer, a surgeon, is credited with the first documented medical discussion of the brow lift in 1910.
The coronal lift was the prevailing technique of the day. It would remain the technique of choice until the 1950s. This technique involves a surgeon removing a 1-2mm strip of scalp and then sewing the skin back together. Today, while some surgeons continue to use it, most don’t.
When done correctly, the Coronal lift gives patients a younger, more refreshed appearance. The same is true of more modern techniques.
Alternatives to Surgery Today
Today, patients have options besides surgery to obtain results that at one time, could only be achieved via plastic surgery. Many people are opting for less invasive procedures, such as Botox and various injectables.
There are both advantages and disadvantages associated with injectables. One of the main disadvantages is the required upkeep. Generally, men and women who use Botox and similar products will need to follow a four to six months injection schedule for maintenance purposes.
Botox isn’t always used in lieu of a brow lift or surgery. Sometimes, it is used in conjunction with it.
Endoscopic Brow Lifts Becoming Popular
In recent years, endoscopic brow lifts have become more popular and common. A pencil thin device is used to make three to five incisions, all less than ½ inch long.
A lighted camera on the end of the endoscopy device takes pictures as the surgeon is operating. These live pictures are used to help direct the surgeon performing the surgery.
Endoscopy surgery is much less invasive and patients who undergo this treatment typically recover faster. They also tend to have smaller, less noticeable scars.
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About Endotine Implants
Endotine implants represent another major advancement in the field. Endotine implants are bio-absorbable and after they have been implanted, the tissues in the forehead will heal at a heightened position, typically after 30 to 60 days.
The implant is reabsorbed into the body after about five months, though it could be at a varying rate.
Forehead lifts have become more common and are one of the more popular cosmetic surgery procedures. This is because the forehead has such a big impact on the face’s appearance.
The forehead is also one of the first places to show aging. When the muscles begin to loosen and become weak, wrinkles begin to form, which causes a person to age dramatically.
Did You Know: The average brow lift surgery candidate is between 40 and 60 years old. A brow lift is often paired with an eyelid surgery.
Brow Lift Techniques
Brow lift techniques vary. A direct brow lift is often performed on older individuals and on men. The mid-forehead lift is primarily used on those 65 years old older.
It helps to get rid of deep set forehead wrinkles and sagging eyebrows. Excess skin, fat and muscles are also removed in this procedure.
Coronal Forehead Lift
The coronal forehead lift is also an option. It elevates the entire brow and forehead. The most advanced technique is the endoscopic forehead lift we mentioned above.
The small, surgical telescope used in the procedure, helps to smooth forehead wrinkles and elevate the brows.
Which Procedure is Right for Brow Lift
Your physician will be able to tell you which procedure is right for patients. The cosmetic surgeon will likely ask the surgical candidate what they hope to get out the procedure and then offer their professional opinion with consideration given to the patient’s desires and their own expertise and experience.
An individual’s face, their age, and the ability of the surgeon to successfully hide the scars will play a role in deciding what technique and procedure will be used.
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About The Brow Lift Procedure
Before brow lift surgery can begin, patients may be given either general anesthesia or intravenous sedation. If this is an endoscopic surgery, a special device (an endoscope), with a built-in camera will be used.
The surgeon will make several small incisions within the hairline, where the scars can be hidden with hair. Depending on the procedure, the skin may be repositioned or portions of it removed completely.
Some patients will opt to also have an eyebrow lift. After either or both lifts are completed, the incisions are closed and the patient then begins the recovery process.
The Recovery Process for Brow Lift
A brow lift is an outpatient surgery. After the patient has rested and recuperated for a short while, they will be allowed to go home, barring any complications.
They will experience some mild discomfort that will require a pain management regimen for 1-4 days. There will be some swelling and sometimes blackening of the eyes.
Swelling should subside in about 14 days or less, the black eyes, much sooner.
The patient’s bandages should be ready for removal in about 1 to 3 days. Makeup can be worn within five. Individuals ready to venture out in public should be able to do so within 14 days and perhaps as soon as one week.
Physical exercise can be performed in about two weeks. A person should be fully presentable in roughly four weeks. Some people will be in as few as two weeks.
Common Concerns of Brow Lifts
Most people interested in having a brow lift done are interested in knowing how long it will last. The answer relies on many factors.
Individuals who take care of their skin, i.e., don’t spend a lot of time in the sun, don’t smoke and are in good health, will typically find that their brow lift lasts 5 to 10 years.
Conversely, a person who spends too much time in the sun, who smokes and who doesn’t take good care of themselves will likely get 5 years out of their lift.
Costs of Brow Lifts
The average cost of a brow lift is $3,092. This figure, however, will vary based on where a person has the surgery done and the surgeon who performs the procedure.
Surgeons based on the coasts tend to cost more than those in the Midwest and the southern regions of the United States.
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Brow Lift Complications
Brow lift complications will vary based on the type of procedure utilized. Endoscopic surgeries are the least risky.
However, every technique carries its own risks, some of the more common are scarring, numbness, hairline elevation, loss of sensation and localized hair loss.
Questions To Ask Your Doctor Before Getting a Brow Lift
- Am I good candidate for a brow lift?
- Is your surgical facility state-licensed or accredited by a respected national agency?
- Is the doctor performing the surgery American Board of Plastic Surgery certified?
- Is the doctor performing the surgery a member of the Aesthetic Plastic Surgery?
- How much brow lift experience do you have?
- May I please see pictures of your work (before and after)?
- Where will this procedure be performed?
- How will you handle any complications?
PRP Treatment for Brow Lift
As we age, our brows begin to droop, taking on a hooded appearance. A brow lift can be used to counteract this, either a surgical or a liquid one.
One option that is receiving an increased amount of interest is PRP therapy. PRP therapy is a procedure that has been used for some time in variety of medical fields.
It is procedure that is just beginning to be used by cosmetic surgeons but is quickly growing in popularity. It is completely natural and offers doctors a non-invasive method of dealing with wrinkles and loose, saggy skin.
How PRP Works
PRP works from the inside-out. It is not-invasive and totally natural. Most cosmetic procedures are not. Many involve surgery and the most popularly used injectables often contain foreign substances.
Serious side effects are commonly associated with many cosmetic procedures as well. Conversely, there are few negative side effects associated with PRP treatment and even fewer risks.
It is for these reasons and others that an increasing number of doctors are turning to PRP therapy or at least are giving thought to offering it.
PRP When No Sagging Exists
PRP may be used alone to improve the appearance of the brow when there is not a significant amount of sagging and hooding. It is sometimes effective because of its ability to rejuvenate the underlying tissues, effectively plumping them up so that the skin appears fuller and more youthful.
When it is not a good stand-alone option, it can be used in concert with a surgical or liquid brow lift to either expedite the healing process or to improve the results of either of the aforementioned procedures.
Surgical and Liquid Brow Lifts
Surgical and liquid brow lifts are the two primary options for individuals with a sagging brow. The surgical option lifts the eyebrows to where they were positioned in a person’s youth.
It is important to note that a brow lift is also referred to a forehead lift. A doctor will not actually manipulate the eyes. Individuals concerned about droopy or saggy upper eye lids may want to consider blepharoplasty.
Surgical Brow Lift
A surgical brow lift may require the removal of extra skin and muscle. The side effects are pain, bruising and inflammation.
One of the risks that people assume when they undergo this type of procedure is that the outcome may not be to their liking. When it is not done correctly, the results can be aesthetically unsatisfactory and unappealing.
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Liquid Brow Lift
A liquid brow lift is another option. It typically involves the use Botox and other fillers. Some people will shy away from this procedure because Botox and the additional fillers are foreign substances and there is the risk that an individual will experience complications, i.e., rejection of the substance or allergic reaction to it.
PRP therapy is all-natural and so many of the aforementioned complications don’t apply.
PRP Useful When One is Beginning to Age
PRP may be given to someone whose brow area is not drooping or sagging severely. It may also be a good option for someone who is just beginning to show the effects of aging.
It may not, however, be a suitable choice for someone more advanced in years and whose brow is showing a significant amount of aging. For these individuals either a surgical or liquid brow lift would likely yield more satisfactory results.
PRP for Brow Lift Specifics
PRP is a procedure that harnesses the body’s own power to heal itself. It utilizes blood platelets and the growth factors that they contain.
To obtain these very precious healing powerhouses, blood is drawn from the patient undergoing the procedure. The amount varies but on average between 20 cc and 50 cc is drawn, sometimes more, sometimes less.
The blood is placed in a special machine, a centrifuge. This vigorously spins the blood so that its components are separated. Once they are, the platelets are removed and injected into the patient.
The injection will be wherever the person is receiving treatment. If a person were to undergo it in lieu of a traditional brow lift, the platelets would be injected into the patient’s forehead.
What Happens Prior to the Injection
Prior to the platelets being injected into the forehead, this area of the face would be cleansed and a topical pain reliever applied. During the procedure, a person may feel a small amount of pain and some pressure.
Typically, the pain will come from the blood draw and the injection. The feeling of pressure may occur when the platelets are being injected. The injection lasts only a few seconds and so the pressure quickly subsides.
What Happens After the Injection
After a PRP procedure, an individual may notice some swelling and bruising at the site of the injection. Both should dissipate very quickly following the treatment
A patient may be instructed to ice the area and take a mild pain reliever afterwards, if needed. In addition to PRP injections, another option doctors have at their disposal are PRP gels and sprays.
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Takes Some Time to Notice
It will take a few weeks before the effects of PRP therapy are noticeable. This differs a great deal from both surgical and liquid brow lifts, where the effects are seen right away.
This is particularly true of the latter. It may take a week or two before the effects of a surgical lift are clearly seen as it will take some time for swelling and bruising to subside.
PRP therapy takes longer than many other cosmetic procedures because it works with the body’s systems. The growth factors have to do what they are designed to, which doesn’t happen overnight.
While PRP therapy helps to significantly speed it up, it still takes time. The growth factors found in platelets help rejuvenate and regenerate tissue and bone. When the tissue is either of the aforementioned, it becomes fuller and healthier.
The result, when used for cosmetic purposes, is an improved appearance.
Complications of PRP for Brow Lifts
People who undergo PRP treatment rarely, if ever, have to deal with complications. This is because the procedure utilizes the body’s own blood. Very few foreign substances are utilized.
This makes the procedure very attractive to both doctors and patients. There is minimal risk of something going wrong. Another reason why this treatment is growing in popularity is because the results are natural looking.
The outcome is not dependent upon the skill of the surgeon but the body’s natural processes. Therefore, a person will never look like they went under the knife. Instead, they will look more youthful and refreshed.
Cost of PRP Treatment for Brow Lift
When PRP therapy is used in concert with a traditional brow lift, it is to improve the effectiveness of the procedure and to speed up healing. The costs, when it is used in this regard, may differ when it is being used alone.
The average cost of PRP injections is anywhere in the neighborhood of $500 and $1500 per injection. To get an accurate price quote, a patient will need to speak with his or her doctor.
Conclusion About PRP and the Usage in Brow Lifts
PRP therapy may or may not be a good option to lift a sagging brow on its own. It may be best used alongside a more invasive treatment option such as surgery.
Whether or not it is sufficient to improve the appearance of a person’s brow will be something that a surgeon decides.
The effects of PRP therapy are not permanent. A person will have to regularly undergo it, in order to maintain whatever results they attain.
Typically, it will be necessary to get injections every 12 months. Some people will need to them more often, others less.
PRP Questions to Ask Your Doctor
- How much experience do you have administering PRP?
- How many injections will I need?
- How much will everything cost?
- Can I make payments?
- How soon will I see results?
- Will the results be obvious and noticeable?
- Are you planning to administer PRP therapy alongside a surgical lift?
- Why is PRP better than a liquid lift?
- What kind of side effects should I expect?
- What do you suggest if I don’t get the results I desire?