Facelift is a procedure performed in order to reverse the effects of age, gravity, exposure to the sun, and daily stress. Removing excess fat, tightening facial muscles, and readjusting the facial skin accomplish this. A facelift may be done in combination with other facial procedures such as a forehead lift (brow lift,) eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty,) or a nose job (rhinoplasty.)
Facelift is a highly individualized procedure that your surgeon will tailor to your unique bone structure, skin texture, and underlying muscle tone. Facelifts do not improve skin texture, although they can be done in conjunction with procedures that do improve texture, such as laser or chemical Contour Threads. A facelift is also an excellent procedure for those with excess skin hanging from the neck or jowls.
Facelift Surgery usually takes several hours to complete. For extensive and/or multiple procedures, your doctor may schedule two separate sessions. Some surgeons complete one side of the face at a time, some all at once, and others will base the sequence of events based upon your facial structure and the surgeon’s own technique.
Incisions usually begin above your hairline at the temple, continue in front of the ear, and terminate behind the earlobe in the lower scalp area. The skin is then separated from the underlying fat. This fat is trimmed or suctioned away selectively in order to improve the contours of the face. The doctor then tightens the facial muscles and pulls the skin back. Some excess skin may also be removed. Stitches are used to close the incisions, and metal staples may be used to reattach the skin to the scalp.
Following surgery, a small tube is often placed underneath the skin in order to facilitate drainage of blood that often collects behind the ears. The tube is removed after a couple of days. Your head may also be wrapped and dressed to prevent bruising and swelling. Pain medication is available to those who desire it. Numbness of the face is a common complaint. This sensation will disappear within a few weeks.
Sex, running, and other vigorous activity should be avoided for at least two weeks. Alcohol, steam baths and saunas should be avoided for at least two months. Facial features can remain somewhat swollen for several months after surgery and will gradually return to normal.
The area surrounding the eyes is one of the first to show the signs of aging. Eyelid surgery, or blepharoplasty, corrects the sagging of upper eyelids and the bags that form just below the eyes. Eyelid surgery can wash away years of aging, giving your eyes a smoother, more natural and youthful appearance.
The surgeon begins by making incisions along the natural creases of the upper lid, and/or directly under the lower eyelashes. The skin is then separated from the underlying tissue and the excess fat, skin, and muscle are removed. The surgeon then replaces and stitches the skin, leaving it smooth and tight. Blepharoplasty lasts anywhere from one to three hours and is usually performed on an outpatient basis.
In some cases, a surgeon may opt for transconjunctival blepharoplasty. The surgeon makes an incision inside the lower eyelid and removes pockets of fat, but no skin. This procedure is ideal for patients with less pronounced bags under the eyes, and leaves no visible scar. The CO2 laser may also be used to tighten skin of the lower eyelids.
Following surgery, the eyelids are rubbed lightly with ointment and bandaged. The eyes will feel tight and sore, although medication alleviates much of this discomfort. The head should be kept elevated for several days. Application of a cold compress minimizes swelling and bruising. The sutures are removed within a week of the surgery. Most patients can return to work in seven to ten days, but must take care to protect the eyes from harmful contact and irritants.
Surgery to reshape the nose is a common cosmetic procedure that can have profound results on a person’s appearance and self-confidence. Rhinoplasty can accomplish any number of changes, including size augmentation or reduction, a narrowing of the nostrils, changes in the bridge or tip of the nose, or an alteration to the angle of the nose and upper lip. Regardless of the specific purpose, surgery to reshape the nose creates a more contoured and shapely nose.
The surgeon begins by making an incision, either from within the nose or across the columella (the vertical strip separating the nostrils). The skin is then separated from the underlying framework (the bone and cartilage) of the nose. The framework is then sculpted to the desired shape and size. Finally, the surgeon reattaches the skin to the new contoured framework, and stitches the incision. Surgery usually lasts no longer than an hour or two and is performed on an outpatient basis.
After the Surgery
Following surgery, a splint is applied to the nose to maintain the new shape. The surgeon may also decide to place nasal packs or soft plastic splints in the nostrils to stabilize the septum (the dividing wall between the air passages). Patients can experience some swelling and bruising to the eyes and nose; although medication greatly reduces any discomfort you may experience. Stitches are usually removed in five to seven days and patients can return to work in ten to fourteen days. Patients who wear eyeglasses must have them specially fitted to the head for up to seven weeks.
When we are young, our skin is soft and elastic, free from the facial lines and tissue damage that time, sun damage, and disease can cause. This youthful looking skin is due, in a large part, to collagen, the fibrous protein that forms the underlying support layer beneath the skin. Over time, the skin’s network of collagen begins to weaken, causing the skin to lose its elasticity. Collagen injections have been used for decades to replenish the skin’s suppleness and help maintain its youthful appearance. Collagen Injection Therapy is a safe treatment that can even out facial lines and scars, as well as improve the look of specific parts of the body.
The Treatment Process
Depending on the collagen product to be used, patients may first be given a skin test to detect possible allergies to the collagen injection material. The test involves the physician injecting a small amount of collagen into an inconspicuous location. This testing period takes approximately a week. If no reaction is determined (this is the case roughly 97% of the time), the patient returns to the office, where the physician reviews the medical record and outlines the basics of the treatment.
The treatment is nothing more than an injection(s) of collagen into a specific area. Some patients find the injections slightly uncomfortable; especially those performed on the lips or around the nose. The injection is typically no more painful than a normal shot. Some types of collagen contain a small amount of lidocaine, which helps to numb the “injection” area. Most treatments last 30 minutes and can be accomplished during a lunch hour.
Following the Treatment
Immediately after the treatment there may be some temporary bruising, puffiness, or tenderness. This is normal and gradually subsides in a few days. Patients can resume their day-to-day activities almost immediately following the injection. The longevity of a collagen injection varies, lasting anywhere from six months to two or more years. Just like naturally occurring collagen, collagen injections gradually wear away and patients can choose to have “touch up” treatments. Other more permanent techniques are also available and can be discussed by your doctor.
In very rare cases, a shallow scar can form at the injection site. If you experience prolonged redness, swelling, itching, and firmness at the injection site, contact your physician immediately. Individuals with a history of allergy to other bovine collagen products; patients with other severe allergies; or those who are sensitive to lidocaine should not undergo collagen injections.
Non-Surgical Skin Tightening
The CUTERA® Pearl ™
Patients today are seeking a more aggressive treatment for facial lines and texture without the lengthy downtime of traditional ablative procedures. Pearl™ with proprietary YSGG technology, provides this optimal balance between cosmetic benefit and patient downtime.
This procedure is performed by Dr. Steven H. Warnock. A consultation must be set up with the doctor prior to scheduling procedure.
The CUTERA® Pearl Procedure™
During treatment, a portion of the epidermis is removed. There is simultaneous thermal injury to all or part of the remaining epidermis. This creates a natural protective dressing on the skin to minimize downtime during the restorative process. One to two treatments are required, spaced four weeks apart for optimal results. Downtime is three to four days.