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Face lift is one of many cosmetic and plastic surgery options offered by expert physicians at UW Health Transformations in Madison, Wisconsin. A face lift is a very individualized procedure, and our physicians provide care and consultations that match the personalized nature of the surgery.
A face lift removes excess fat, tightens underlying muscles, and reshapes the skin of your face and neck.
This procedure can be done alone or in conjunction with other procedures such as a forehead lift, eyelid surgery or nose reshaping. The result of a face lift is a more youthful, energetic appearance.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who is a good candidate for a face lift?
Individuals seeking a face lift procedure must be healthy and have realistic expectations about what surgery can achieve. Good candidates for face lifts are men or women with jowls, deep lines or folds around the mouth, deep wrinkles in the cheeks, or loose skin, wrinkles or fatty tissue in the neck.
Face lifts can make you look younger and fresher after years of gravity, facial muscle activity and sun exposure have revealed signs of aging. Face lifts cannot remove sagging eyebrows, excess skin and fatty deposits in the upper and lower eyelids, or wrinkles around the mouth. Ask your surgeon about other options to correct these conditions.
What does a face lift involve?
During a face lift procedure, discreet incisions are made above the hairline at the temples, along the natural line in front of the ear, and into or along the lower scalp. This assures that scars are hidden within your hair and in the natural creases of your skin. pYour surgeon will proceed to remove excess fat, tighten underlying muscle and redrape the facial skin. Depending on the desired effect, deeper tissues may need to be repositioned to restore the face's youthful contour.
For men, beard-growing skin is repositioned behind the ears. pProcedures are done under general anesthesia or IV sedation. Various monitors ensure that your heart, blood pressure, pulse and oxygen circulation are regulated. You will be watched closely immediately following surgery and released within several hours.
What should I do in the time leading up to my face lift surgery
Your doctor will give you instructions before your face lift surgery, including guidelines on eating, drinking and taking or avoiding certain medications and vitamins. Avoid smoking or tobacco use four to six weeks before surgery and aspirin 14 days before and after your procedure. You will also want to arrange for someone to drive you home after surgery and stay with you for at least one night.
What should I expect following face lift surgery?
Upon waking, you may find a small, thin tube under the skin behind your ear that drains any fluid that may collect. It should be removed within the first couple of days. Your surgeon may also loosely wrap your head in bandages to minimize bruising and swelling. You will find discomfort to be minimal immediately following surgery.
Recovery from a face lift takes time and is variable depending upon the incision sites and techniques used. Temporary side effects during the first week of recovery are common and may include temporary bruising, swelling, and feelings of facial numbness, tenderness, tightness or dryness.
Initially, you may look and feel strange, but it is important to manage your expectations and to understand the healing process and timeframe. You will be able to return to work between 10 and 14 days and may resume strenuous activity after two or more weeks. Bruising will subside between two and three weeks. All patients must limit sun exposure for several months.
Patients usually feel much more confident and less self-conscious after the third week. Risks associated with face lift procedures include injury to nerves that control facial muscles or feeling, infection, bleeding, excessive scarring, and asymmetry or change in hairline.