FACELIFTING (RHYTIDECTOMY)

A facelift (Rhytidectomy) can make you look years younger. As we get older, the face in the mirror loses its youthful vigor. The skin and fat around the jaw line sags. The furrows between the cheeks and nose deepen. The corners of the mouth turn down. The neckline sags. These effects are caused by the pull of time and gravity on the supporting framework of the face-the SMAS. The SMAS (Subcutaneous Musculo-Aponeurotic System) holds up in youth the muscles, fat and skin of the face. As we age, the SMAS ages too, causing the face to sag and look older. The facelift was developed over the years to restore what time and gravity undo, by restoring a look of youth and freshness to the face. The facelift gained popularity quickly, and is now one of the most common cosmetic surgical procedures.


Techniques

The first type of facelift worked to tighten the skin of the face. Since the SMAS was not tightened, the effects looked unnatural and did not last. More recently, the "SMAS lift" was developed. This tightens the SMAS, but because the pull is back close to the ear, the central areas of the face (the cheek folds and jaw line near the chin) cannot be significantly improved. Since this is a fast, safe technique, most facelift surgeons still prefer it. However, over the last few years, a far superior facelift technique has been developed. This technique elevates and lifts the entire SMAS all the way to the nose and mouth. Since the pull is deep in the face and not close to the skin, it gives an even more natural-looking result than the SMAS lift. This form of facelift, called a composite lift or deep plane lift, is performed by a handful of talented facelift surgeons in the USA. From our KNO-CLINIC and ARUBA CENTER FOR COSMETIC SURGERY, we have one of the few surgeons who perform both deep plane and SMAS techniques, tailoring the approach to the individual patient. This is far superior to what most surgeons offer: the same facelift technique regardless of what each patient needs.


Recovery

About two weeks after facelift surgery, most people find that they can return to work. As with any facial surgery, healing continues for six to nine months until every little irregularity settles down and sensation in the skin and ears returns to normal. You should avoid strenuous activities for several weeks following facelift surgery. Your facelift surgeon will give you more information on how to treat your face in the weeks and months that follow. 


Immediately after the surgery, you may find that you look strange. However, as swelling and bruising subsides, your face will look progressively better. In the months following your facelift, you will enjoy a youthful new look. You may even feel younger as you enjoy the confidence that comes with looking your very best.


How to get started

For more information on the facelift procedure offered at our practice, contact us. In a consultation, you may decide that a facelift is right for you. Alternatively, you may be able to find the enhancement you are looking for using less invasive procedures, such as BOTOX® Cosmetic injections or microdermabrasion.


Characteristics

Procedure: Improving sagging facial skin, jowls, and loose neck skin by removing excess fat, tightening muscles, redraping skin. Most often done on men and women over 40.
Length: Several hours.
Anesthesia: Local with sedation, or general.
In/Outpatient: Usually outpatient. Some patients may require short inpatient stay.
Side Effects: Temporary bruising, swelling, numbness and tenderness of skin; tight feeling, dry skin. For men, permanent need to shave behind ears, where beard-growing skin is repositioned.
Risks: Injury to the nerves that control facial muscles or feeling (usually temporary but may be permanent). Infection, bleeding. Poor healing; excessive scarring. Asymmetry or change in hairline.
Recovery: Back to work: 10 to 14 days. More strenuous activity: 2 weeks or more. Bruising: 2 to 3 weeks. Must limit exposure to sun for several months.
Duration of Results: Usually 5 to 10 years.

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Are you curious about what we can do for you? Please feel free to contact us.