What Happens During Facelift Surgery?

It’s always helpful to know what will be going on when you’re in surgery.  Before performing any procedure on our Costa Mesa plastic surgery clients we sit down and go over what they can expect during surgery.

First, anesthesia medications are administered so you are comfortable and pain free during a facelift procedure.  The options for anesthesia include intravenous sedation and general anesthesia. Which is best for you depends on a variety of things and together we will decide which one before the procedure.

Many of our Costa Mesa clients combine their facelift procedures with a variety of other procedures. If you are adding other things like facial implants or soft tissue augmentation to re-contour the facial structure they may prolong the duration of the surgery but rarely by much.

A traditional facelift incision typically begins in the hairline at the temples, continues around the ear and ends in the lower scalp. Often we chose to sculpt fat or redistributed from the face, jowls and neck at this time too. Underlying tissue is also re-positioned and the deeper layers of the face and the muscles are lifted.  The skin is then re-draped over the uplifted contours and excess skin is removed. A second incision may be made under the chin to address any sagging skin or muscles in neck. Sutures or skin adhesives are then used to close the incisions.

An alternative option to a traditional facelift uses shorter incisions at the temples that continue around the ear and then more tiny incisions possibly within the lower eyelids or under the upper lip. If sagging jowls, loose neck skin and fat accumulation under the chin are going to be corrected as well incisions for a neck lift will be made. These incisions often begin in front of the ear lobe and wraps around behind the ear ending in the lower scalp.

I know it sounds like a lot of incisions but under the care of a skilled surgeon, these heal well. Typically, the incision lines from facelift surgery once healed are well concealed within the hairline and in the natural contours of the face and ear. You will see the improvements of a facelift appear as swelling and bruising subside. The final results will not only restore a more youthful and rested appearance, but also help you feel more confident and refreshed.