In time, gravity, sun exposure, and the stresses of daily life take their toll on our faces and necks. Deep creases appear beside the mouth, the jaw line slackens and becomes jowly, and the neck develops loose folds and fat deposits. Facelifts counteract these signs of aging by tightening muscle, removing fat, and trimming excess skin, giving your face a fresher, youthful look. After surgery, patients look years younger.
Facelifts, technically known as rhytidectomies (literally, “removal of wrinkles”), rejuvenate the mid- to lower face and neck. Facelifts are most effective for patients who want to correct:
- Midface sagging
- Deep creases under the eyes
- Deep creases between the nose and mouth (nasolabial folds)
- Jowls due to loss of muscle tone
- Sagging areas of fat
- Loose skin and fat under the chin and jaw
Facelifts can produce a dramatic improvement in appearance for patients with the problems mentioned above. However, facelifts do not stop the aging process; in time, signs of aging will gradually appear once again.
Further, facelifts will not rejuvenate the brow, eyelids, nose, and some of the midface. Patients who want to improve these areas may consider combining a facelift with a brow lift or eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty).
Injectable soft-tissue fillers, facial implants and skin resurfacing can also enhance the effects of a facelift.
The neck may sag as a result of aging or weight loss, and is often affected before the face. Loose neck muscles can lead to an appearance of bands on the neck or drastic drooping of the skin. A neck lift is a surgical procedure that can smooth and tighten the skin on the neck and provide a more toned and youthful appearance. The results of this procedure offer a drastic improvement to the appearance of the neck and subtle changes to overall appearance. A neck lift may be performed alongside a facelift, or may be performed alone.
A neck lift procedure includes both a cervicoplasty to remove excess skin and a platysmaplasty to remove or alter muscles in the neck. Liposuction can also be used to remove excess fat during a neck lift. This takes two to three hours and may be performed under general anesthesia or local anesthesia with sedation. Most procedures are performed within an outpatient basis.
Swelling and bruising may occur shortly after the procedure and last up to ten days. Most people can return to work and other regular activities within two weeks after a neck lift procedure.
Blepharoplasty can rejuvenate puffy, sagging or tired-looking eyes by removing excess fat, skin and muscle from the upper and lower eyelids. It may be performed for cosmetic reasons or to improve sight by lifting droopy eyelids out of the patient’s field of vision. Blepharoplasty can be combined with BOTOX® treatments to raise the eyebrows or reduce the appearance of wrinkles, crow’s feet or dark circles under the eyes.
The procedure is usually performed in an office with local anesthesia and IV sedation. Incisions are made along the eyelids in inconspicuous places (in the creases of the upper lids, and just below the lashes on the lower lids). Dr. Cohen removes excess tissue through these incisions and then stitches them closed with fine sutures. In the case that no skin needs to be removed, Dr. Cohen will likely perform a transconjunctival blepharoplasty, where the incision is made inside the lower eyelid and there are no visible scars.
Stitches are removed after four or five days and most people return to work in ten. Contact lenses may not be worn for two weeks. Swelling and bruising may occur shortly after the procedure. Most people can return to work and other regular activities within one week after a blepharoplasty procedure.