This procedure has become extremely popular because advancing medicine has increased our average lifespan — often people discover themselves looking much older than they feel. Every person ages differently and the signs of aging become apparent and troublesome at different times. Therefore, it is difficult for surgeons to predict when you may need a facelift or how long it will last. The goal of the facelift, though, is to provide you a more youthful and rested appearance.
Facial surgery can be divided into three parts:
- forehead or eyebrows (brow lift)
- cheek lift
- neck lift
While occasionally only one or two portions is advised, most people require all three components. The doctor will discuss your particular needs with you and recommend the appropriate procedure.
The amount of improvement depends on the degree of wrinkling and skin laxity in your pre-surgery condition. If it is excessive, the results can be dramatic. Also, there are other contributing factors to your outcome. For instance, we know that smoking accelerates the facial manifestations of aging, as does extensive sun exposure without sunblock. Liposuction can remove unwanted fat from the neck and jaw line; when combined with a facelift, the outcome can be 20%-25% improved. Also, other ancillary procedures we may recommend include lip enhancement, nasal tip elevation, chin enhancement, or chemical peels. As to the duration of results, it obviously takes years before the condition could return to the pre-surgical condition. The improvement should last from five to ten years (depending on your skin laxity and facial muscle tone).
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Your surgery will probably be performed on an outpatient basis under general anesthesia. An adult should bring you the day of surgery and remain with you at home for the first 24 hours. While the scars of the procedure are hidden in the hairline, we do not shave the hair — so you have your hair the next day to camouflage your incisions.
Do not eat any food or drink any liquids after midnight the evening before surgery (unless directed to take certain medications by your Patient Coordinator). You may shower the morning of your procedure. Do not apply makeup, creams, lotions, powders, or oil to your skin the morning of surgery. Wear comfortable clothing that is easily removed (zip-up or button-up shirts).
IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT YOU TAKE NO ASPIRIN OR IBUPROFEN OR PRODUCTS CONTAINING THESE MEDICINES FOR AT LEAST TWO WEEKS BEFORE SURGERY.
Expect swelling of the face and eyelids, and some associated discoloration with any facial surgery. Don’t panic — this usually passes within 14 days. A “turban” head bandage, along with a supportive chin strap (if necessary) will be applied after surgery. The head dressings will be removed the next day in the office by the doctor. Avoid turning your head or stretching your neck for the time being–this is important to prevent pulling your incisions. After your surgery, it’s best to elevate the head of your bed with a couple of pillows. Try to keep the back and neck in a straight line (bend only at the waist).
Some degree of numbness or weakness of surrounding tissues after surgery may exist. There is usually little actual pain following this procedure, but you may experience a “tight” sensation as a result of temporary swelling. If you have any discomfort around the face, try applying a cold compress before resorting to pain medications.
Most patients will come back to their full normal activities within three weeks. You will return to the Nashville, Tennessee clinic in a week to have your sutures removed. Makeup can be worn within seven to ten days. You should easily be able to go back to work and drive an automobile in about two to three weeks.
Possible complications: Risk of complications is low, but does exist. Some patients experience dizziness after surgery due to loss of fluids. Risks include poor skin contouring, temporary skin numbness, and localized collection of blood. If later revision is needed, we advise waiting at least six months.
Your Patient Coordinator will provide you with a detailed, written estimate of fees for your procedure when you have your initial consultation at Cool Springs Plastic Surgery. Your “Estimate of Surgical Fees” will include surgeon’s fee, operating room, and the anesthesiologist’s fee. Please call (615-771-7718) or fill out our contact form here to schedule a consultation today!
Our business hours are Monday-Friday from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm. Please let us know if your schedule does not fit within our Nashville, Tennessee office hours and we will work to find a time that will meet your needs. We look forward to hearing from you!