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Face Lift

A facelift is a surgical procedure to rejuvenate the face and neck by improving visible signs of aging.  As you experience signs of aging, the skin and muscles of the face begin to lose tone and elasticity.  You may also have a loss of fat in the face.  A facelift can improve the most visible signs of aging by tightening deeper structures, redraping the skin of the face and neck, and removing selected areas of fat or replacing fat that has been lost.

How much pain will I have?

Moderate to high

What is the cost?

A price quote detailing fees for the facility, anesthesia, and surgeon will be given at the consultation.

What is the hospital/surgery center time?

The procedure takes several hours.  You will either go home the same day, or stay overnight in the hospital depending on your individual needs.

What medications should I take or avoid taking with my surgery?

You should not take any blood thinners or anti-inflammatory medications for a week before your procedure, and you should hold all over the counter supplements a week before surgery.  This will help reduce the risk of bleeding intraoperatively, and help reduce the risk of postoperative hematoma (collection of blood).  If blood thinners are prescribed for you by your cardiologist or primary care physician, you should get clearance from them to hold these medications before they are discontinued.  You should hold all hormones 6 weeks before surgery.  Birth control pills should be held 6 weeks before surgery as well.  Of course you should make sure to use alternative forms of birth control during and after this time.  Hormones and birth control pills put you at a higher risk of blood clots.  These clots can go to your lungs and cause serious illness or even death.  We call this a pulmonary embolus.  Steroids should be weaned off at least a month before your surgery, and this weaning process should be set up and cleared by your prescribing physician.  Dr. Lovelace and the staff will go through your list of medication, and let you know what exactly you need to do with those medications preoperatively.  Make sure that you bring all of your medications with you to your consultation.  You will usually be given your prescriptions for your postoperative medication on your preoperative visit so that they can be filled and at your house when you get home from surgery.

Will I need clearances from any other physicians?

Depending on your age and medical issues, Dr. Lovelace and her staff will set you up with your primary care physician, cardiologist, etc. for clearance prior to your surgery.  At that time any necessary labs, EKGs, or chest x-rays will be done.

What is the recovery?

Sutures are usually dissolvable, but if some are left in place, they will normally be removed within 5-7 days after your procedure.  Most patients return to non-strenuous work 7-10 days following surgery.  Swelling, bruising, and soreness are typically gone within 2-3 weeks.  Strenuous activities can be resumed at approximately 6-8 weeks after surgery.  Your scars will lighten and fade from 3 months to 2 years.

What are the risks?

The risks of a face lift include bleeding, infection, scarring, hematoma, seroma, need for drains, hair loss, asymmetry, poor cosmesis, need for further surgery, contour irregularities, suture breakage, skin necrosis, dehiscence, weight gain/loss/pregnancy can change result, nerve/vessel/muscle/airway injury, numbness, poor movement, bruising, chemosis, globe injury, visibility/palpability of product/suture, cardiac/pulmonary/stroke/DVT/PE events, death, etc.