A facelift is also known as a facialplasty, rhytidoplasty and cervicofacial rhytidectomy. It is a surgical procedure that is designed to reduce signs of aging in the face. It is a cosmetic procedure performed by a plastic surgeon to tighten sagging skin and remove wrinkles and fat from the face and neck.
Facelift Procedure Process
Facelifts performed by Dr. Peter Hilger and Dr. Sofia Lyford-Pike in Minneapolis are generally an outpatient procedure performed in two to three hours. Patients are sedated before the facelift procedure while the anesthesiologist stays nearby to keep the patient safe during the procedure.
The surgery begins with an incision near the ear. The incision begins at the hairline and moves along the front of the ear, around the earlobe and then back along the ear and the hairline. This approach helps hide the incision after surgery. A second incision is made on the opposite side of the face in the same way.
The skin is then carefully lifted from the underlying muscle and tissue. The surgeon may remove fat from the cheeks and the neck, then tighten up the bands of muscles and tissues around the neck below the chin. The multivector facelift technique we have developed produces superior results to methods used in the past. Excess skin is then trimmed away from the facial skin and is sutured into place.
Good Candidates for a Facelift
Our surgeons carefully screen your health records to make sure you are healthy enough for the procedure. Physical conditions such as high blood pressure, easy scarring, smoking, heart problems and other serious conditions may make patients ineligible for facelift surgery. In addition to physical health, good candidates will have realistic expectations for the surgery.
Benefits of Facelift
A facelift helps to create a more youthful appearance for the face. It will eliminate skin sagging, wrinkles and even eliminate fatty deposits in the face that lead to an aged appearance. There will be an obvious improvement especially in the contour, skin tone and overall look of the skin in the face and the neck. The natural enhancement creates a fresh look and a positive upbeat attitude.
Cost of a Facelift
Facelifts are an elective surgery and are therefore not covered by most insurance companies. Cost is broken down into several different factors: the surgeon’s fee, the facility fee, anesthesia, medications, surgical garments, medical tests and more. They generally cost at least several thousand dollars. These exact costs vary depending on the details of the procedure best suited to your needs. We will share costs with you during your consultation.
How do I choose the best facelift surgeon for my upcoming facial rejuvenation?
When making the decision to undergo facial rejuvenation, it is vital to choose the best facelift surgeon available. While any doctor can cut and suture, not all surgeons possess an eye for aesthetic beauty; a vital quality when trying to attain natural-looking facelift results. Make sure your surgeon is board-certified in facial plastic surgery and has a long history of performing a variety of procedures on the face and neck. Look through your surgeon’s before and after photos, to get an idea of his skill and style; if you are happy with his previous work, you are more likely to be pleased with your results. The best facelift surgeon will sit down with you and develop an individualized surgical plan to achieve your facelift goals.
Focusing on procedures of the face, head, and neck, Drs. Hilger and Lyford-Pike have been performing facelifts for more than 30 years combined. They are board-certified in Facial Plastic Surgery, have authored more than 75 articles on facial plastic surgery, and presented over 100 scientific presentations. Besides providing renowned facial plastic surgery services in his Edina office, Dr. Hilger and Lyford-Pike are also active faculty and researchers at the University of Minnesota.
What are the risks?
The most common risk is developing a hematoma, which happens in approximately 3% of cases. The problem is easily treated and does not affect the eventual outcome of the surgery.
What do I do after the surgery?
After surgery, you will generally spend a few hours in a recovery room. Once home, you must generally stay in a reclined position for 24 hours immediately after the surgery. A soft diet is a must, and stretching or bending the neck should be avoided. Apply ice packs to reduce swelling and reduce bruising. We will remove your bandages the day after surgery. The stitches or sutures are removed seven to ten days later.
Are there non-surgical alternatives to a facelift?
Some non-invasive surface treatments to the skin can provide some tightening of the soft tissues but the effectiveness is very limited and not equivalent to surgery for any significant laxity. Aesthetician services are also helpful for providing a more youthful, refreshed look and can be seen as complimentary to facelifts, blepharoplasties, and brow lifts.
Is there anything I can do to speed up or enhance my recovery?
Drs. Hilger and Lyford-Pike have years of experience with these procedures and have found that our esthetician can play a very beneficial role in your procedure. Preoperatively she has treatment options that prepare your skin for surgery and shorten recovery. After your procedure, she can help get you back to your favorite activities. Services she provides include skin care camouflage and lymphatic drainage. These techniques shorten recovery and greatly enhance the overall aesthetic improvement.
For facelift post-op instructions click here.