Facelift & Necklift

As we age, major changes occur in the face and neck:

  • We lose volume in the face
  • Our skin sags in the face and neck
  • The underlying muscles stretch and loosen
  • Excess fat accumulates in the neck, and
  • The texture of the skin changes

The goal of face and necklift surgery is to achieve a more youthful look by restoring volume and correcting the laxity of the skin and underlying structures.

What is a facelift?

A facelift, or lower facelift, is a surgical procedure designed to remove excess loose skin, reduce wrinkles and tighten underlying support structures of the face and neck. It does not stop the aging process, and when done correctly does not change your basic appearance.

When there is laxity of the cheeks, jaw line, and neck, facelift surgery may be the best option. As we age the underlying facial support structures, ligaments and muscles stretch and loosen. A facelift rebuilds the structure and foundation of the face and restores facial contours to more youthful proportions.

Facelift surgery is often combined with other procedures to achieve an ideal outcome and address aging of the upper face at the same time. Injectibles can restore volume, and lasers and chemical peels can improve skin texture and pigmentation problems. If you desire to simply treat the neck and not the entire face, an isolated necklift may be a good option.

What is a necklift?

This is a surgical procedure that specifically addresses and enhances the appearance of the neck. This lift will tighten the neck muscles, remove excess skin and fat, and improve the profile of the neck. A necklift can only be accomplished with surgery.

A well-defined neck is characteristic of a youthful appearance. As we age, the neck muscles (the platysma) lose elasticity and the neck skin sags, fat accumulates and these muscles can appear more prominent. The result is neck bands, or platysmal bands. These thick, chord-like bands develop across the front of the neck, and are often called a “turkey neck”.

Your facelift and/or necklift consultation

You and Dr. Waltzman will discuss your surgical goals, health history and any medical conditions, current medications and previous surgeries. He will listen to you, discuss your options, examine your face and neck, and take measurement and photographs.

Dr. Waltzman will devise a treatment plan to fit your needs and achieve optimal results, discuss potential outcomes, risks and complications, and type of anesthesia. You should ask questions and discuss your feelings about surgery.

Facelift procedure

A facelift is most commonly performed under general anesthesia. It requires an incision that begins in front of the ear, continues behind the ear, and ends in the hairline behind the ear. The skin is then redraped over the face and excess skin is removed. Some bruising and swelling is normal. Bruising typically resolves in a week, but some mild swelling can remain for several months. Once you are healed, the scar is concealed in the hairline and the natural contours of the face and ears. Patients typically describe their appearance after surgery as more rested and youthful.

Necklift procedure

A traditional necklift is done under IV sedation or general anesthesia. The incision starts at the hairline above the sideburn, and continues down and around the ear ending in the hair. The tissue under the neckline will be repositioned and the platysma muscle tightened. Fat may be redistributed from the jowls and neck. The neck skin is redraped, and any excess skin is removed. Usually a second incision is made under the chin to reach and repair the muscle and remove any excess fat. There is typically some bruising and swelling which will improve over the next several weeks. An alternative to a full necklift is a limited procedure done through a chin incision to improve your profile.

Am I a candidate?

If you have deep lines and wrinkles and a significant amount of skin laxity, surgery may be the best option for both face and neck rejuvenation. Fillers can do a lot, but they cannot remove loose skin.

You may be a good candidate for a facelift if you have:

  • Sagging of the skin in the middle and lower portions of your face
  • Deep creases along the nose extending to the corners of the mouth
  • Loss of skin tone in the lower face that creates jowls

You are a good candidate for a necklift if you have:

  1. Excess skin under the chin and neck that has lost its elasticity.
  2. Excess fat under the neck area including a turkey waddle.

Dr. Waltzman has the skills and state-of-the-art techniques available to help you achieve your goals of facial rejuvenation and a natural, youthful appearance.