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Marina Plastic Surgery

Private Service, Plastic Surgery

Face Lift

A face lift generally refers to a cheek/jawline/necklift but can include several extra procedures such as a brow lift and eyelid tightening (blepharoplasty), all designed to reduce lines and wrinkles and lift sagging skin.
In a typical face lift, cuts (incisions) are made from the hairline above and in front of the upper ear, behind the tragus, down in front of the earlobe then up behind the ear into the hair behind the ear. Tissue (including fat, muscle and fibrous tissue) lying deep below the skin is repositioned and tightened upwards and backwards, then the skin is replaced, trimmed of any excess then neatly stitched.
The surgery varies in duration, but can take from 4 to 6 hours for a standard deep plane facelift to 8-9 hours if it is combined with other procedures such as browlift and blepharoplasty. General anaesthesia (you sleep through the operation) is required for the long operations, but for the simpler cheek/neck lifts you may be suitable for a local anaesthetic and a sedative so the area being treated is numb and you feel drowsy but not asleep. You will stay in hospital overnight following a long facelift under general anaesthetic but after the shorter local anaesthetic operations you will probably be fit to go home about an hour later.

Brow lifts are usually done endoscopically and take about 1.5 hours on their own, but are often combined with a facelift. Blepharoplasty is already mentioned above.
Temple tightening is done to raise the outer brows and can be combined with a mid-face lift to tighten the skin and fat pads over the cheeks. Botox to weaken the frowning muscles (corrugators) or excision of the corrugators to stop frowning are useful adjuncts.

In patients over 50 years of age a deep plane tightening or SMAS (Superficial Musculo-Aponurotic System) lift is usually most beneficial. This involves tightening the platysma muscle in the neck and the fascia joining into the muscles in the face. You get a much longer lasting result this way instead of doing a skin only tightening. Lifting and internally suspending the cheek fat pads using the so called 'volumetric' method enhances the full youthful look. Unwanted fat pads under the chin which are very 'ageing' can be removed by fine-bore liposuction to greatly enhance the neck appearance.
Dermal fillers for reducing the visibility of coarse lines in the lips and around the mouth or in the frown area in the brow can be put in during a facelift procedure and dermabrasion of coarse lip lines or old acne scars is another adjunct to surgery.
Fat grafts using the 'Coleman' micro fat grafting method can be useful for filling in contour defects with your own tissue. "Top-ups' after several months may be needed.
It may take 2-3 weeks for the worst of the swelling and bruising to disappear and from 6 months to 1 year for the scars to fade to a white line.

This page was last updated at 3:26PM on September 13, 2021.