Facelift results.  Patients often ask what they may expect to achieve following facelift surgery.  Which facial regions may be addressed by a facelift?  Are there any facial regions which may not be improved from facelift results?

Anticipated facelift results may be divided according to facial region:

Softening of the nasolabial folds

The effects of gravity and facial movements combined with decreased elasticity of the skin often lead to increased prominence of the nasolabial folds, also called smile lines. Facelift results may achieve softening of the smile lines by removing excess skin and resuspending the facial muscles.  Compared to earlier facelifts, current techniques strive for more natural facelift results.  Great care is taken to avoid an overtightened look.

Reduction in jowl appearance

Signs of facial aging are often most pronounced in the lower face due to effects of gravity.  Patients often develop excess skin and fatty tissue along the jawline, referred to as facial jowls.  There is a firm structure referred to as the mandibular retaining ligament in this region, which is immobile.  Excess soft tissue accumulates in the lower face just behind this fixed structure due to gravity.  Facelift results may achieve correction of facial jowls by undermining the skin and releasing the fixed ligament.  This allows natural redraping of the skin.  Facelift results may improve the jawline contour and lead to a more youthful appearance.

Increased definition of the neckline angle

Excess fatty tissue often accumulates under the chin over time.  As skin loses elasticity, the neckline angle may also become less defined.  Facelift results may achieve sharpening of the angle between the neck and chin.  Further definition may be achieved through facelift results by reducing the localized fatty deposit in this region through either liposuction or direct fat excision.

Increased volume within the midface

As facial muscles are resuspended, facelift results may achieve greater volume within the cheekbone region to restore the so-called “triangle of youth” appearance.  As facial aging occurs, redundant skin and soft tissues accumulate in the lower face.  This leads to an inverted appearance of this imaginary triangle.  As the superficial facial muscles are stitched to a higher position within the cheek, this increases midface volume and restores the correct orientation of this youthful triangle.

Which regions are not improved by facelift results?

Techniques of facelift surgery are applied to improve facial appearance and correct signs of facial aging.  It is important to realize that facelift results do not affect all facial structures.  The position of the eyebrows, for example, remains unchanged following facelift.  Facelift results do not affect brow ptosis or droopiness.  Excess skin and prominent fat within the eyelid and orbital regions are also not affected by facelift surgery.  Wrinkles around the mouth, sometimes referred to as smoker’s lines, also remain largely unchanged.  Depending on your specific concerns and clinical appearance, other options may exist in addition to facelift surgery, for example, eyelift (blepharoplasty), brow lift, or injections using fat or filler.

Please contact us if you are interested in learning more about facelift and neck lift surgery. Dr. Power will address your specific concerns regarding facial aging and will advise whether facelift surgery may be right for you.

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