First signs of ageing on the face
As we start to age, the effects of gravity, the exposure to the sun and the stress of daily life are noticeable on our faces. The skin loses elasticity and the muscles on the facial area lose their tone, forming deep folds between the nose and the mouth, the cheeks fall thus blurring the contours of the jaw and allowing fat and the typical platsyma bands to appear on the neck.
The facial lifting as a solution
Also known as facial stretching or rhytidectomy, the facial lifting is a surgical procedure to improve the visible signs of drooping which take place through the ageing of the face and the neck. The facial lifting cannot stop the ageing process, but it can improve the more visible signs through the tensing of the deeper structures, the readapting of the skin on the face and the neck and the removal or repositioning of the selected areas of fat.
Generally, the classic lifting to which we refer in this chapter includes the treatment of the middle or lower third of the face and neck.
A facial lifting can be performed separately or together with other procedures, such as an eyebrow lift (frontal, upper third), liposuction, eyelid surgery or nasal surger.
Who is the ideal candidate for a lifting?
The facial lifting is customised for each patient. You could benefit from a mini lifting which, being a minor surgery, minimizes the risks. The best candidate for a facial lifting is someone who has a face and neck which have started to relax, but whose skin has elasticity and whose bone structure is well defined.
How is a facial lifting performed?
The facial lifting is performed under general anaesthetic in the central operating theatres of Hospital Clínica Benidorm.
The patient should previously undergo a pre-operatory check up and be evaluated by our anesthetist.
The facial lifting surgery takes between 3 and 4 hours. The cutaneous incision is extended to the front of the sideburn, in front and behind the ear and along the hair line of the nape of the neck.
After the surgery, the patient is admitted and medically discharged the following day. We apply on each side of the face 1 Redon aspiration to prevent bruising. The Redons are removed the following day before discharge. The patient will leave the operating theatre and the hospital with a special orthopedic bandage which will be worn for the first week of post operatory. The suture stitches are removed after 10 days.
Are there risks? Are there guarantees?
When the lifting is performed by a qualified team, complications are uncommon. In our centre, the difference between other centre’s and specialists who perform facial and body surgeries is that, we are medical specialists of the face, mouth and neck. Meaning we only perform medical or surgical interventions of this field making our specialization and experience maximum.
However, each person has a specific anatomy, physical reactions and a capacity to heal that are distinct, and therefore the results are not absolutely predictable. Complications may arise such as bruising, lesions of the nerves which control the facial muscles, infection and reactions to the anesthetic.
The problems with scarring and suffering of the cutaneous flap are more frequent in smokers, so much so that in our centre we contraindicate the facial lifting on patients who are smokers. The risks can be minimized by carefully following the instructions and therapeutic protocol of our centre both before and after the surgery we perform.
The results are very satisfactory, as long as you take into account that the results are not immediate. Even after the swelling and the bruises disappear, the hair around the temples can be fine and the skin may be a bit dry and rough for a few months.
When will I be able to return to work after a lifting?
Within 15 to 21 days the patient will be able to return to a social-working life although various months are needed to witness the most optimal result of the surgery.
Will I be left with stains or scars? How long will the swelling last?
The scars of a lifting remain unseen through the hair and the natural creases of the face however they will start to diminish with time until they are less visible.
Are the changes permanent? How long do the results of a lifting last?
The results are stable over the years although nothing is for life and our faces continue to age at a specific speed for each patient depending on their genes, habits, work… The results are stable between 5 and 12 years.