Brow Lift (Forehead Lift)
A brow lift is a procedure that addresses a heavy and drooping brow. The brow position is related to the dynamic effects of the brow depressors, a series of muscles surrounding the orbit of the eye, and the sole brow elevator (the Frontalis), the forehead muscle responsible not only for raising the brow, but also for the appearance of forehead wrinkles. The effects of ageing may in time give the appearance of permanent anxiety, or a tired, exhausted and even angry look. Brow lift, often in conjunction with other facial rejuvenation techniques, helps unwind the clock, restore facial harmony and give a refreshed look.
Traditional brow lift techniques include a long incision around the scalp and removal of the brow depressor muscles. This technique is seldom used today. Among its troubling sequelae are loss of scalp hair, long scars, a numb scalp and, most troubling, the startled appearance of the brow, especially the central parts. Modern techniques allow more controlled endoscopic or minimal incision brow lifts, which seek to reposition the brow while minimizing these troubling complications. By focusing the major part of the brow manipulation to the sides, the startled appearance can be avoided, thus achieving a more natural look. The central brow depressors are addressed using adjuvant botulinum toxin application.
After detailed discussion with you, Dr Farhadieh will recommend the technique most suitable to your individual needs. Preoperative photographs will be taken as part of your medical records. Your consultation will begin with a thorough medical history, including smoking habits, previous surgery, regular medications which include blood thinners, previous history of deep venous thrombosis, diabetes, stability of weight over time and all other relevant details. Smokers will be advised to stop smoking for 3–6 weeks prior to surgery and to abstain for at least 3–6 weeks afterwards.
A brow lift is often performed as part of broader facial rejuvenation surgery addressing other areas of concern, including eyelids, jowls and cheeks. An overall harmonious appearance that restores a refreshed, youthful appearance, rather than an artificially tightened forehead and face, is the optimal outcome. Surgery involves release of retaining ligaments and, depending on the individual case, permanent surgical division of brow depressors may be indicated. Access to the brow is through the hairline, whether it is with endoscopic techniques or minimal access surgery. Once the forehead has been adequately mobilized it is suspended against the skull in a natural, aesthetically optimal position.
After surgery you will be taken to the recovery room and monitored before you are returned to the ward. Depending on the extent of your surgery you may be admitted overnight or discharged the same day. If you are admitted as a day case you will need to ensure that someone can drive you home and preferably stay with you overnight. Local anaesthetic injected during the procedure will help to relieve any postoperative discomfort.
Postoperatively, some swelling will be noted in the region, including on occasion bruising around the eyelids. This settles within the first week to 10 days. Although complications are not common, Dr Farhadieh will discuss these with you during your consultation.
A follow-up appointment will be made for 5–7 days after the operation, when your sutures will be removed. Further regular interval follow-up appointments will be arranged. Postoperative photographs will be taken as part of your medical records.
Your relationship with your surgeon is the most vital element of a successful journey. We pride ourselves on being there for every step of the journey with you. Dr Farhadieh and our staff are always available to address any of your concerns.
‘Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.’
Frequently Asked Questions
Will I need general anesthetic?
Yes, this surgery needs to be undertaken in an appropriate surgical facility under general anaesthetic.
How long will the recovery take?
Most bruising and swelling settles within 7–10 days. Most people are back at work within 2 weeks. Any residual swelling settles within the first month.
Is asymmetry common?
We all have asymmetry of our face and body, but with brow lifts the most significant concern for asymmetry relates to risk of damage to the frontal branch of the facial nerve resulting in paralysis of the brow (forehead) on that side.
What will my follow up include?
Dr Farhadieh believes that the relationship between doctor and patient is sacred and privileged. Our practice is based on compassion, honesty, transparency and, above all, patient welfare. We pride ourselves on making sure that you feel supported at all times. We will be available during all stages of your journey and will schedule short-, medium- and long-term follow-up appointments as part of our overall practice.