Facelifts and their Benefits and Drawbacks

There are a plethora of different facelifts that can be performed, depending on the patient’s aesthetic goals. In tern, each of these types of facelifts will come with a different set of benefits and drawbacks. In general, a facelift is a procedure performed to combat the signs of aging in the face and neck. When a patient is looking to improve the loss of skin tone in the lower face, deep wrinkles below the eyes or from the nose to the corners of the mouth, and/or sagging in the middle of the face, a facelift will be recommended. While a facelift is an excellent way to make a patient appear younger, it will not change the patient’s fundamental facial appearance or stop the natural aging process. The signs of aging can be caused by stress, a poor lifestyle, heredity, environmental factors and gravity. Facelifts can be performed in tandem with other facial procedures, such as eyelid surgery or a brow lift should the patient want to make more of an impact with their surgery. The decision to have a facelift is very personal, and should only be made once the patient has weighed up the benefits and drawbacks of the procedure.

What are the Different Types of Facelifts?

There are five main types of facelifts, each used for a different aesthetic purpose. The first type of facelift is a skin only facelift, which only lasts for around six months. Next, a mini-facelift is the least invasive option usually used for those experiencing premature aging. A mini-facelift is a temporary solution to the initial signs of aging. Third is a mid-facelift, performed to target the area between the cheeks. A mid-facelift requires little recovery time and leaves minimal scaring. The penultimate facelift is what’s called a SMAS facelift. This is a more intense option, as it targets the superficial muscular system and combats all the signs of aging. Finally, a deep plane facelift is the most invasive option. This facelift addresses the issues of a loss in muscle tone and fatty deposits in the face.

What are the Drawbacks of Facelifts?

All surgical procedures carry possible risks, and will have side effects like scaring. Generally speaking, facelifts carry the following risks, although they rarely occur:

• Excess bleeding
• Infection
• Persistent pain
• Anaesthesia risks
• Scarring
• swelling
• Fluid accumulation
• Changes in skin sensation like numbness
• Poor wound healing
• Skin loss, irregularities or discolouration
• Facial nerve injury
• Hair loss at the incisions that can be temporary or permanent
• Deep vein thrombosis
• Cardiac and pulmonary complications
• The sutures can spontaneously rise through the skin and become visible, causing irritation and requiring removal
• Lastly, the results may be unsatisfactory, in that the face is made asymmetrical, the scar location is poorly placed or the ends of the incisions may have visible issues. In such cases, it may be necessary to have revisional surgery to improve the results of the original procedure.

It is important to discuss all these risks and complications with your surgeon, before signing your consent form. Should you have any queries about the procedure, make sure that you discuss them with your plastic surgeon, so a to put your mind at ease that you have made the right decision for you.


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