WHAT IS A FACELIFT?
A facelift, or rhytidectomy, is a surgical procedure that improves visible signs of aging in the face and neck, such as:
- Sagging in the middle of your face
- Deep creases below the lower eyelids
- Deep creases along the nose extending to the corner of the mouth
- Fat that has fallen or has disappeared
- Loss of skin tone in the lower face that creates jowls
- Loose skin and excess fatty deposits under the chin and jaw can give even a person of normal weight the appearance of a double chin
As a restorative surgery, a facelift does not change your fundamental appearance and cannot stop the aging process.
A facelift can only be performed surgically; non-surgical rejuvenation treatments cannot achieve the same results, but may help delay the time at which a facelift becomes appropriate and complement the results of surgery.
Am I a Good Candidate for a Facelift?
Because a facelift is considered a minimally invasive surgery, there is not a long list of requirements for candidates. Generally, if you are in good overall health and healthy skin then you should be a good candidate for facelift surgery.
You should also understand what a facelift can and cannot do. Many people ask “how long does a facelift last?” Essentially, it will depend on the individual. For example, everyone’s skin is different. We all have different skin types and qualities that affect how our skin ages.
There are several things out there about how long facelift results last. Some say results can last up to 15 years and some say up to 10 years. The reality is that is will depend on your individual skin quality and how it responds in the aging process.
How to Prepare for Facelift Surgery
The first step preparing for any type of surgery is to visit with your surgeon. When you come to visit us, Dr. Robert Garza will sit down with you and help you understand everything you need to know. Together, you will review your medical history, your goals for your surgery, as well as any additional risks.
As a part of your medical history review, Dr. Garza will ask you about your current medications and supplements, as well as your smoking history and drug use. We will also review previous surgeries you’ve had and how you respond to anesthesia.
We hope that you come prepared to ask questions too!
After reviewing your health and medical history, Dr. Garza will make a recommendation for your facelift procedure, and you’ll set a date for the surgery.
How Is a Facelift Done?
When you come in for your operation, you will be given an anesthetic for your comfort. As the surgery begins, lines will be drawn to mark where the planned incisions will be. Incisions are then made along the hairline and around the ear and the skin peeled back.
Once the inner tissue can be accessed, more small incisions are made to allow the face and neck to be tightened and sutured in place. Additionally, fatty tissues in the face can be sculpted or removed during this stage.
After the rest of the face is tightened, the excess skin is trimmed away, and the remaining skin is sutured along the original incision line.
Are there different types of facelifts?
Technically, yes there are. These procedures use different types of incisions to accomplish their goals. A traditional facelift focuses on reducing the wrinkles and signs of aging on your face. To accomplish this, the incision runs from the hairline, down around the ear, and ends just behind the ear.
Some patients receive mini-facelifts, which use much shorter incisions and take less time to perform. The drawback is that a full facelift procedure is more effective and lasts longer than a mini-facelift.
Another type is a neck lift. These treatments use smaller incisions that start at the front of the ear, then wrap around the ear, and end in the hairline behind the ears. As the name implies, it lifts aging skin under the chin to make the face appear more youthful.
While it is not technically a facelift, a brow lift can be used to reduce the effects of aging on your forehead. Here the incisions can be made at the hairline, or behind it.
Are There Risks Associated with Getting a Facelift?
As with any procedure, there are some risks that can occur after your operation. If you have any questions about any of these potential side effects, please bring them up during your consultation.
- Reactions to anesthesia
- Bleeding around the incision site
- Infection around the incision site
- Facial nerve damage
- Hair loss around the incision scars
- Change in skin condition and sensitivity
- Persistent swelling
Another rare but serious complication is pulmonary embolism (PE). This is a condition that is caused when a blood clot travels to the lungs. Signs of PE include general weakness, shortness of breath, and chest pain. Call your doctor immediately if you notice any of these symptoms.
Facelift Surgery at Garza Plastic Surgery
If you’re looking for plastic surgeons in the Greater Nashville, TN area, look no further than Garza Plastic Surgery. Dr. Robert Garza is a double board certified plastic surgeon who specializes in both aesthetic and reconstructive surgical techniques.
Our office is located in the Belle Meade Hill Center shopping center. We also have the pleasure of having the licensed aesthetician and nurse practitioner, Tracey Robinson, on our staff. Whether facelift surgery is right for you or not, we can help you find the best options to meet your aesthetic goals.
You can give us a call or book an appointment here on our website. We look forward to seeing you!