The purpose of face-lift surgery is to improve the appearance of the face by repositioning the skin and tightening some of the underlying muscle and tissue. The procedure is designed to counter sagging and looseness in skin and muscle tissue that becomes more pronounced as individuals age. But face-lift surgery will not eliminate all facial wrinkles.
A face lift takes about three hours and may be performed as an outpatient procedure. Local and IV anesthetics will be used to sedate the patient. An intravenous sedative that helps to lower their awareness of the procedure being performed. Assist in monitoring and maintaining the patient’s vital life functions.
The surgeon makes an incision within the hairline just above the ear. The incision continues down along the just near front edge of the ear, around the earlobe, and then up and behind the ear extending back into the hairline. The location of this incision is designed to hide any sign of the procedure later. The surgeon separates the skin of the face from its underlying tissue, moving down to the cheek and into the neck area and below the chin.
Fat deposits over the cheeks and in the neck may be removed surgically or with liposuction at this time. The surgeon tightens certain bands of muscle and tissue that extend up from the shoulder, below the chin, and up and behind the neck. If these muscles and tissue are not tightened, the looseness and sagging appearance of the skin will return. The surgeon trims excess skin from the edges of the original incision and the skin is maxium pulled back into place. The incision is closed with delicate sutures .
Some swelling and bruising is normal following a face lift. There should be a noticeable improvement in the contour of the face and neck. Some fine wrinkling of the skin may be improved, but deep wrinkles are likely to require another cosmetic procedure to improve their appearance.
A facial lift can only be performed surgically : non-surgical rejuvenation treatments cannot achieve the same results.