5 things you must know about Facelift Surgery

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1. Skin only excisions are not the answer!

Some form of Superfical Musculo-Aponeurotic System(SMAS) based surgery is needed to achieve durable and natural results. Long-term results that maintain shape and harmony are only possible if an appropriate SMAS -based technique is used.

2. Short scar technique only refers to the skin incision technique, potentially any of the SMAS techniques may be used for in combination.

The advantage of this technique is as the name suggests, the short scar that doesn’t extend into the hairline either in the temples or at the back. The risk to facial nerve should be minimal in expert hands. Some of the largest series of facelift surgery internationally show 1% risk of permanent facial nerve damage. Temporary facial nerve paresis is not uncommon in any SMAS -based procedure as the nerve often undergoes traction. These often recover within 8 to 12 weeks at the latest.

3. Bruising and swelling often takes 7 to 10 days to settle.

The remainder of the swelling slowly subsides over the ensuing weeks. By 12 weeks all swelling should have completely subsided.

4. Numbness in the area of the skin undermined is quite common.

What’s important is to recognise unless there is any major nerve damage, this will improve over the ensuing months. Whilst the vast majority patients report near-normal sensations at three months, almost all patients report normal sensation in the areas of surgery at 12 months. The most common sensory nerve damage during surgery is the greater regular nerve where patients often complain of numbness in the earlobe which is permanent unless the nerve is repaired.

5. Sleeping position post surgery

During the immediate post-operative period, sleep at an incline in bed at 30°. Do not sleep on the side of the face, and avoiding straining and coughing as it helps reduce the chance of swelling or any bleeding.

Dr Ross Farhadieh
Dr Farhadieh is an internationally renowned Australian qualified and trained Plastic Surgery. He holds fellowship qualifications in Plastic Surgery from Royal Australian College of Surgeons, Royal College of Surgeons (England) as well the European Board of Plastic Reconstructive Aesthetic Surgery. He has multiple clinical subspecialty fellowships in Cosmetic, Pediatrics as well as Microsurgery from World Leading institutes in London.
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