Face Lift (Rhytidectomy)
Dr. Douglas Grace is one of the most experienced cosmetic surgeons in Burlington. He has many years’ experience performing advanced facial rejuvenation procedures, such as a facelift. When performed by Dr. Grace, this procedure can restore smoother, more pleasing contours to your face and neck. It can help you look as good as you feel, and perhaps younger than you are.
The goal of Dr. Douglas Grace and the entire staff at The Grace Clinic is to make your facelift surgery experience as easy and comfortable as possible.
How should I prepare for surgery?
If you are a smoker, you will be asked to stop smoking well in advance of surgery. Aspirin and certain anti-inflammatory drugs can cause increased bleeding, so you should avoid taking these medications for a period of time before surgery. Dr. Grace will advise you and provide additional pre-operative instructions. If your hair is very short, you may want to let it grow enough to cover your incisions while they heal. If you are overweight and you have a desire to lose more than 15 pounds, you should discuss this with Dr. Grace.
What will the day of surgery be like?
Medications will be administered for your comfort during the surgical procedure. You and Dr. Grace will have decided in advance what type of anesthesia is to be used. For your safety during the operation, monitors check your heart, blood pressure, pulse and the amount of oxygen circulation that is in your blood.
When surgery is completed, you will be taken into a recovery area where you will continue to be closely monitored. A bandage may have been wrapped around your face and sometimes small tubes will be been inserted beneath the skin to drain away fluids that might otherwise accumulate, but you will not feel these at all. In fact, there is surprisingly little discomfort from the surgery.
How will I look and feel initially?
Please note that the results and the amount of time it takes to fully recover vary greatly among our Burlington facelift patients.
After surgery, you will be asked to restrict your activities and simply relax for a few days. Elevating your head when you sleep will help to minimize swelling and bruising. Remember, you must not take aspirin or certain anti-inflammatory medications, and you should not smoke or be exposed to heavy secondary smoke for a while.
Any bandages and drain tubes will usually be removed in one or two days. At that time, you will notice puffiness and discoloration, which may be more pronounced in some portions of your face than others. Do not be alarmed by any unevenness or temporary asymmetry caused by the variance in swelling and bruising, which is perfectly normal. Generally, the greatest amount of the swelling occurs 24 – 48 hours after surgery, but it may take several weeks before all puffiness is resolved. Most bruising will disappear within two weeks. After a few days, you will be permitted to wear makeup, which will help conceal any discoloration. You will also experience some numbness in the facial area, which may be present for several weeks or longer. Your stitches will be removed from four to seven days after surgery.
Results of your Face Lift
The results of your facelift may be dramatic or subtle, depending on how you look before surgery as well as the specific goals that you and Dr. Grace have established. Since the healing process is gradual, you should expect to wait at least several weeks for an accurate picture of your new look. Additional minor changes, or settling, may occur over several months.
In order to promote safety and the best possible results, we ask that all of our facelift patients return to The Grace Clinic at prescribed intervals for post-surgical monitoring.
We would also like to stress that your relationship with Dr. Grace and his staff will not end once your surgical treatment is completed. Dr. Grace and The Grace Clinic team will remain accessible for months and years to come for the best result, and they will be more than happy to answer any questions you might have about your facelift surgery or other facial rejuvenation procedures, such as eyelid surgery or brow lift in. In addition, they can help you determine whether you might enhance the results of your facelift by also pursuing neck lift.