Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery
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A facelift improves the appearance of the aging face. The facelift or rhytidectomy is a plastic surgery procedure that tightens the skin of the face and neck. The facelift procedure sharpens the jawline, eliminates the jowls and lessens the creases between the nose and mouth (nasolabial folds). Included in the facelift procedure is tightening of neck skin and underlying muscles and removal of neck fat. A forehead lift or eyelid surgery is an adjunct to the facelift procedure.

Complications of facelift surgery include hematoma (a collection of blood under the skin), injury to the nerves that control facial muscles (usually temporary), infection, and skin loss. To help prevent complications after facelift surgery it is important to quit smoking, and stop taking aspirin and any herbal medicine for two weeks before the facelift surgery.

The well-hidden facelift incisions begin in the temple hairline, extend downward in front of the ear and upward behind the ear to reach the lower scalp. A small incision placed under the chin approaches the neck in the facelift procedure. Removal of the sutures occurs within a few days after the facelift. It is best to keep the head elevated on a few pillows when sleeping after a facelift and use ice packs to help keep the swelling down. Within a few days the swelling and bruising in the face begins to subside.

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