Facelift | Procedure Steps, Complications | Cosmetology


What is facelift

The facelift includes removing excess skin, smoothing wrinkles, and tightening facial tissue. It does not have a brow or eye lift‌, although these can be done at the same time.

Traditionally, an incision is made in the hairline near the temples. The incision goes in front of the ear, down in front of the earlobe, and back down the scalp behind the ears

The surgeon lifts the skin from deep facial muscles and fat, gently pull the skin up and down, and removes excess skin. They can tighten the deep tissues of the face.

A small incision or excision may be made under the chin to tighten the skin and deep tissue in the neck. This is called a neck lift.

The facelift is two-thirds of the face and often focuses only on the neck. People undergo facelifts for many different reasons. A common reason to hide the signs of aging.

Good candidates for facelifts:

  • Healthy people who do not have medical conditions that prevent the wound from healing or recovering from surgery.
  • Those who do not smoke or abuse materials.
  • Those who have realistic expectations of what the surgery means.
  • Facelift surgery is generally performed as an in-patient procedure. It can include local anaesthesia and sedatives or general anaesthesia.
  • The procedure can take 2 to 5 hours, and the person can usually go home the same day after surgery.

Why is it done?

As you age, the shape and shape of your face change due to common age-related changes. Your skin becomes less elastic and loose, and the fat deposits in some areas of your face decrease and increase in others. Age-related changes to the face that are reduced by the facelift include:

  • Your cheeks appear
  • Excess skin on the lower jaw (joules)
  • The skin folds deeper from the side of the nose to the corner of the mouth.
  • Reduction of skin and excess fat in the neck (if there is a neck lift in the process)
  • A facelift is not a treatment for superficial wrinkles, sun damage, creases around the nose and upper lip, or manipulation of skin colour.

Have there been any risk factors or side effects?

There are risks to any medical procedure, including a facelift. Accidents include:

  • Risks of anaesthesia
  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Cardiac events
  • Blood clots
  • Pain or scar
  • Hair loss in cut areas
  • Chronic inflammation
  • Problems in wound healing.

Facelift complications

Complications from facelift surgery are rare and cosmetic procedures are generally safe as long as they are performed by a qualified and experienced professional.

However, any surgery carries some risk.

Risks and complications of facelift surgery:

  • Bleeding
  • Injuries
  • Complications of anaesthesia.
  • Damage to the facial nerves that control muscles, usually temporary
  • Hematoma
  • Infection
  • Hair loss around the incision site, but this is not uncommon
  • Numbness, which improves in days or weeks.
  • Scar
  • Skin necrosis or tissue death
  • The irregularity between the two sides of the face.
  • Enlargement or hardening of the scar.

If the patient notices inflammation, pain, redness, or swelling in the days after surgery, they should seek medical help. This can be a sign of bruising. If you have a fever, you may have an infection.


However, the following points should be discussed and considered before proceeding:

  • Facelift surgery is not recommended for people with serious medical problems and the candidate must be in good physical and mental health.
  • Patients with high blood pressure and diabetes are at increased risk for complications.
  • Smoking and tobacco use increase the risk of complications after surgery. It can interfere with wound healing. Anyone considering a facelift should quit smoking or using nicotine products altogether.
  • It is important to have reasonable expectations and remember that a facelift will not stop the entire aging process.
  • The good elasticity of the skin and the bone structure give the best results.
  • Patients should not use aspirin or other blood thinners for at least a week before surgery.
  • It is important to have realistic expectations when having cosmetic surgery. The results are usually permanent.

How do you prepare

Initially, talk to a plastic surgeon about a facelift. The visit includes:

  • Exam and medical history. Be prepared to answer questions about past and present medical conditions, previous surgeries, previous plastic surgeries, complications from previous surgeries, history of smoking, and drug or alcohol use. Your surgeon will perform a physical exam, request recent records from your doctor, or consult a specialist if you have any concerns about your ability to perform surgery.
  • Action Medication Review. Provide the name and dosage of all medications you take regularly, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, herbal remedies, vitamins, and other foods.
  • Facial examination. Your plastic surgeon will take pictures of your face from different angles and close-up pictures of certain features. The surgeon will also examine your bone structure, the shape of your face, the distribution of fat, and the quality of your skin to determine your best options for facelift surgery.
  • Dear. Your surgeon will ask you questions about your expectations for the results of the facelift. He or she will help you understand how a facelift will change your appearance and what it does not correct, such as fine wrinkles or naturally occurring irregularities on your face.

Before the facelift:

  • Follow the directions on the medicine. You will receive instructions on which medications to stop and when to stop. For example, you may be asked to stop taking or replace blood-thinning medicine at least two weeks before surgery. Talk to your doctor about whether any medication is safe or adjusting the dose.
  • Wash your face and hair. The surgeon asks you to wash your hair and face with germicidal soap in the morning.
  • Avoid eating. You will be asked not to eat anything after midnight before your facelift. You can drink water and take medications approved by your surgeon.
  • Get help during recovery. If your facelift occurs as a one-patient procedure, plan to have someone drive you home after surgery and stay with you the first night after surgery.

What can you expect

Facelifts can be done in the hospital or inpatient surgery centre.

Before the procedure

Sometimes this procedure is done under anaesthesia and local anaesthesia, which only numbs part of your body. In other cases, general anaesthesia is recommended, which will keep you unconscious.

During the process

In general, the facelift lifts the skin and tightens the underlying tissues and muscles. Fat from the face and neck can be sculpted, removed, or redistributed. The facial skin is covered again with the newly restored forms, excess skin is removed, and the wound is sutured or closed.

The incisions for the procedure depend on the methods used and the patient’s preferences.

A traditional facelift incision starts at your temple at the hairline, continues down and around the front of your ears and ends behind your ears at the bottom of your scalp. You can cut under your chin to enhance the look of your neck.

The limited incision begins in your hair just above your ear, wraps around the front of your ear, but does not extend to the bottom of your scalp.

The incision for the neck lift begins in front of the earlobe and continues to the lower part of the scalp around the ear. A small incision will also be made under your chin.

The facelift generally takes two to four hours, while other cosmetic procedures take longer if done at the same time.

After the procedure

After the facelift, you may experience:

  • Mild to moderate pain
  • Incision drainage
  • Inflammation
  • Injuries
  • Numbness

See your doctor right away if you have:

  • Severe pain on one side of the face or neck within 24 hours after surgery
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Irregular heartbeat

Your incisions are covered with bandages that apply gentle pressure to reduce swelling and bruising. A small tube may be placed under the skin behind one or both ears to drain excess blood or fluid.

In the first days after surgery:

  • Raise your head
  • Take pain relievers as recommended by your doctor.
  • Apply cold compresses to the face to reduce pain and reduce inflammation.

Self-care at home for the first three weeks can help you recover and reduce the risk of complications:

  • Follow the wound care instructions prescribed by your surgeon.
  • Do not use developing scrubs on your wound.
  • Follow the instructions on when you can start using soap and shampoo and what types you can use.
  • Wear tights in the front (rather than head-like clothing).
  • Avoid excessive pressure or movement on and around the incisions.
  • Avoid wearing makeup.
  • Avoid strenuous or aerobic sports or activities.
  • Avoid direct sunlight on the cut for three weeks and then apply sunscreen SPF 30 or higher.
  • Avoid colouring, bleaching, or perming your hair for at least six weeks.

In the weeks after your facelift, you can style your hair to hide any remaining signs of the cut. When you have a chance to get back to normal, you can also choose to attend the main social events for a few months.


  • Most patients experience some discomfort, but the drug reduces sensitivity.
  • The lesions and swelling will get worse after 2 days and may last for a few days.
  • Recovery usually takes 2 weeks, and vigorous activity resumes after 4 weeks.
  • The stitches are removed 5-10 days after surgery.
  • Incisions and dressings should be kept dry and the patient should follow specific instructions about bathing and washing.
  • It is important to follow your doctor’s instructions, as this will speed up the healing process and allow you to get the best possible result.
  • Numbness and muscle stiffness have been common for some time. It takes almost a year for the scars to fade.
  • While genetics play a role, it’s worth remembering that a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet and proper exercise can also help maintain the appearance of your skin.
  • Avoiding smoking and limiting it to alcohol, stress, sunlight, and pollutants can help improve the youthful appearance of your skin.
  • The same habits can help maintain the effects of facelift surgery.


The facelift gives your face and neck a more youthful appearance. The results of a facelift are not permanent. With age, facial skin begins to shrink again. Generally, a facelift is expected to last 10 years.

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