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We perform facelifts (meloplasty or rhytidectomy) to reposition and remove loose tissue from your cheeks and upper neck and tighten the tissues underlying them. We sometimes use liposuction to improve the contour around your neckline.
Facelifts vary in their extent - they can range from a full facelift to a "short scar" facelift (for your mid face). Your surgeon will fully discuss the different options with you at your consultation. We often combine a facelift with procedures to rejuvenate other parts of your face, such as your forehead and eyelids.
Surgery will not get quite as much tightening on your face as you can, say, using your fingers when you look in a mirror. However, a facelift can make a significant improvement. Your face retains its normal expression.
You are usually given a general anaesthetic for a facelift, which takes 3 to 4 hours, depending on the procedure you choose.
We make a careful incision from your temple down in front of your ear, around the earlobe, and up behind the ear to the hairline. We lift up the skin and deeper tissues and move them back and up to smooth out the loose parts of your cheek and upper neck. We usually have to release this layer from where it is fixed to underlying tissue, and there is always excess skin to remove.
After the operation
You can have a facelift either as a day procedure or with an overnight stay.
You should be able to return to work after 2 to 3 weeks, depending on your occupation. After 7 to 10 days, most people are comfortable being seen in public, with residual bruising disguised by makeup. It is very unusual to take more than 2 to 3 weeks to reach this stage, but complete settling of swelling can take up to 6 months.
The end result
Your scars are mostly hidden in your hairline. They may spread over time as they respond to the tension from your face and neck, and a hairdresser will always be able to detect them on close inspection. The scar behind the ear may be the most noticeable - it is helpful to have a hairstyle which conveniently covers this area.
Your specialist will inform you fully about the scarring from the procedure you choose.
The outcome for you is:
- your cheeks and chin look smoother — your friends will think you "look well" or "better for your holiday" when they see you again
- you will have a reduced amount of loose skin in your neck, though the operation will not remove all creases
- you won’t look a different person, but you will probably feel a lot better about how you look.
After surgery the ageing process continues at its natural rate. Some patients request a repeat operation years later - it is usually no more difficult than before.
We can improve the results of a facelift significantly by skin rejuvenation treatment after your operation.
Risk of complications
There is a risk of complications with all surgery. Your specialist will inform you fully at your consultation about any possible complications from a facelift.
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Options for rejuvenating or reshaping your face
You could also consider our non-surgical skin rejuvenation treatments.