Face lifts, or RHYTIDECTOMY is one of the most common cosmetic surgery performed worldwide. As one ages, the youthful fullness of the face is lost, loose skin, sagging brows, loss of a sharp jawline, wrinkles and creases characterise the aging process.
Face lift surgery removes excessive skin from around the jawline and cheeks. Incisions are placed in inconspicuous areas extending from the front of the ear to behind it. The underlying tissues are also tightened to give a fullness effect to the face.
What is a facelift?
A facelift, also known as rhytidoplasty or rhytidectomy, is a cosmetic surgery procedure which is used to correct the signs of the ageing face. With age, the facial skin loses its elasticity. This coupled with the effect of gravity, leads to sagging skin and loss of jaw line definition. A facelift restores the normal youthful appearance of the face by tightening the sagging skin and underlying muscles, and by removing excess skin and fat.
Who is an ideal candidate?
A healthy individual who has developed advanced signs of ageing on his face including deep wrinkles, loose, sagging skin, jowls in the jaw line is an ideal candidate for the procedure. This is often combined with blepharoplasty for removal of eye bags and a forehead lift to restore youthful contours of the face and takes away years from the appearance.
Post Operative Period:
At what age is facelift usually performed?
Facelifts are usually performed in the early forties to mid-sixties. However, there is no typical age for a facelift. It’s all depends on the extent of skin ageing. Early signs of ageing like fine lines can be managed with other measures like Anti-wrinkle injections, fillers, ULTHERA and HIFU. For deep lines and loose hanging skin, facelifts are the best option.
What are the types of the facelift?
1. Skin lift: This is the simplest type of facelifts which involves excision of excess skin only without addressing the underlying muscles. The procedure is relatively quick and involves lesser downtime. However, the results may not be long lasting as the skin can get stretched again.
2. SMAS lift: This is a more refined version of the facelift which addresses the laxity of the underlying facial tissue. The SMAS (Superficial Musculoaponeurotic System) is the fibrous tissue between the subcutaneous fat and the facial muscles. In an SMAS lift, this is specifically tightened along with the overlying skin. This increases the strength of the repair and thereby the longevity of results over a skin-only.
What is the duration of the procedure?
A facelift operation can perform as a day surgery under general anesthesia. It takes between two to six hours to perform. The incisions are placed in inconspicuous areas within your hairline and in the natural fold in front of the ear.
The surgeon loosens the facial skin from the underlying fat and muscle, tightens the muscle and fascia underneath, and then re-drapes the skin, trimming and suturing or stapling it into position. This is a description of the procedure of facelift in its simplest form.
What should I expect post-operatively?
After a facelift, your face will be swollen, tender and bruised for several days. It will be covered with a dressing during initial two days. A compression garment is then worn for the next few weeks. Swelling will maximum over the first 3 to 5 days and gradually subsides over the next few weeks.
Does it leave visible scars?
Facelift scars are hidden in the hairline, in the folds behind the ears or under the jawline, so they are not very noticeable. The procedure takes off many years from the patient's appearance and most clients are very happy with the trade off.
What kind of downtime can I expect with this procedure?
Light activities and office can be resumed about a week to 10 days after your surgery, although you will likely need to conceal residual bruises with cosmetics. The final results do deserve appreciation and they will be in front of you over the next few weeks once the swelling completely subsides.