As people age, the effects of gravity, sun exposure, Father Time, and the stresses of daily life can be seen in their faces. Deep creases form between the nose and mouth, the jaw line grows slack and jowly, folds and fat deposits appear around the neck. Parts of the face look almost deflated. A surgical facelift may be able to address these concerns. One should know that the facelift does not stop the aging process. It can only “set back the clock”, improving the most visible signs of aging by removing excess skin, repositioning the tissues, tightening the underlying muscles and re-draping the skin of your face and neck. A facelift can also be done along with other procedures such as forehead lift, eyelid surgery or nose reshaping to enhance the overall appearance of the face. A facelift can address:
- Loss of a well-defined jaw line
- Sagging skin in the face
- Deep wrinkles in cheeks, around eyes and between the nose and lips folds
- Wrinkles and loose skin on the neck
- Reverse signs of aging
- Regain confidence
Ideal candidates are those who wish to diminish noticeable signs of aging in the facial region and improve the appearance of their neck, jawline and tired or unhappy expressions. Facelift patients may have previously tried non-surgical treatments or injectable fillers, but are now seeking longer lasting results. At our practice, candidates for facelift surgery typically seek treatment for one or more of the following:
- Deep lines, wrinkles, and skin folds
- Loose, sagging skin of the face, neck and jowls
- Accumulation of excess fat in the cheeks, neck, and jowls
- Volume deficit in the cheeks and/or midface
Ultimately, it is also important to note that patients need to be relatively healthy, cease or quit smoking, and have realistic expectations prior to surgery in order to be an ideal facelift surgery candidate.
During your initial consultation, Dr. Crabtree will take the time to discuss goals and expectations that can be realistically achieved with facelift surgery. As it is often performed in conjunction with other facial rejuvenation procedures, Dr. Crabtree will also help determine which complementary procedures may benefit you the most. He will discuss the different types and locations of incisions, the risks of the procedure and the recovery process. It is important to discuss all of this prior to surgery to achieve the optimal outcome. If you decide you are ready to proceed you will set a date for surgery and be given instructions on how to prepare. You will also schedule a pre-operative appointment to review your medical history, take pre-operative photographs, measure for your post-surgical garments and confirm the details of your surgery.
The procedure will be performed with general anesthesia and the length of surgery will depend on a number of factors, including any additional procedures that are being combined with the facelift. Dr. Crabtree will gently tighten underlying facial tissues and then remove any excess skin as needed. Throughout the surgical process, Dr. Crabtree will be aided by his board-certified operating team.
Traditional Incision Facelift
You may experience bruising, swelling, and redness following your surgery. Mild discomfort following your surgery is common, and it can be controlled by taking an oral pain medication.
Most patients can return to work a week after their surgery. You can resume your regular exercise routine after three to four weeks. Most significant swelling should subside after six weeks of recovery, at which time your final results will become more visible. Residual swelling can take up to six months to fully resolve.
THE FACELIFT PROCEDURE:
- Clinic Procedure or Operating Room: Operating Room
- Hospital Status: Outpatient
- Length of Surgery: 4-5 hours
- Anesthesia: General Anesthesia performed under the care of a board certified Anesthesiologist
- Post-Operative: Small temporary drains may be placed in existing incisions beneath the skin to remove any excess blood and fluid. Bandages will stay in place for 1-2 days and you may see increased swelling in the first 24-48 hours. Stitches will remain for a week and bruising should disappear within 2 weeks.
- Recovery Time: Return to normal daily routine in one week, two to three weeks avoiding strenuous activity and several months for scars to fully fade.
- Results: The results will be evident immediately but will continue to improve and “settle” over the course of several weeks.