Facelift Glendale

What is a facelift?

Face-lift surgery, or a rhytidectomy, is designed to restore a more youthful appearance by removing major wrinkles and sagging skin. It involves tightening of the facial and neck muscles as well as the removal of any excess skin.

Many factors cause the skin to wrinkle and sag (i.e., exposure to the sun, genetics as well as the natural aging process). Children and young adults have smooth, round faces due to fatty tissue that is evenly distributed throughout the contours of the face. As you age, the skin sags and fits more loosely. These folds become prominent, especially around the chin, the jaw line, and along the neck.

Dr. Stepanyan performs rhytidectomies, or facelifts, to enhance your appearance and correct these conditions. The procedure is often performed in conjunction with additional cosmetic surgeries such as rhinoplasty(nasal surgery), asblepharoplasty(eyelid surgery), forehead lift, chin augmentation, and/or liposuction. These procedures can be performed any time after signs of aging appear in order to attain a more youthful appearance.

A facelift can make a patient look 5 to 10 years younger. Dramatic as the end results are, this is not a simple procedure. It requires a week to 10 days of recovery.

Before Surgery

At Stepanyan Surgical Arts Center we will evaluate your medical history in order to determine your overall health. Dr. Stepanyan will discuss with you how your face can look and what you can expect from surgery. Our objective is to create a natural appearance that is pleasing to you. Before and After photographs will reveal what the surgery has accomplished.

Preoperative Instructions: Avoid drugs that contain aspirin several weeks prior to surgery to minimize excess bleeding. You may be required to take antibiotics to prevent infection. You may be instructed to shampoo your hair the night before surgery. A small amount of hair may be shaved around your ears and temples.

Face Lift Procedure

A face-lift is frequently performed in conjunction with blepharoplasty(eyelid surgery), forehead lift, chin augmentation, and/or to create an overall rejuvenation of the face. The procedure can be repeated as gravity continues its effects after the first surgery.

Face-lifts are performed in out patient surgical centers or in an accredited surgeons office. Local anesthesia with intravenous sedation is most commonly used, with premedication to help you relax. General anesthesia is generally not required but can be used if desired.

The surgeon will make incisions inside the hairline at the temple, in front of the ear, then around the earlobe and behind the ear, ending at the scalp area. Excess skin is removed and sagging muscles and connective tissues are tightened. In some cases, fatty deposits are removed from beneath the chin and neck. Incisions are closed with small sutures.

The procedure may take up to 5 hours depending on whether any other procedures are performed at the same time.

Post Operative Care

It is necessary to have someone drive you home and stay with you for the first 24 hours. Initially you will have a large dressing wrapped around your head. You may have surgical drains attached at your neck. These will be removed in approximately 24 hours. Stitches around the ears will be loosened or removed in a few days. The scalp sutures will be removed in 7-10 days.

To minimize scarring, the doctor may remove the sutures in stages. Scarring fades quickly. Swelling and discoloration decrease within two weeks. Tightness in your face will be present for several weeks and there may be slight changes in your hair pattern around the incision.

We recommend that you avoid the sun for several weeks after surgery.

Complications following face-lift are rare. These include bleeding, infection, loss of skin behind the ears, facial nerve injury, discoloration of the skin, numbness, asymmetry and scarring. Infection is rare due to the large blood supply to the face. As mentioned, the risk of bleeding is greater if you take aspirin or blood thinners within 2 weeks of the surgery.The risk of wound complications increases in diabetics, persons with a history of radiation, autoimmune and collagen disease as well as in smokers.

By following pre and post operative instructions, you will minimize potential problems.

Recovery: What to Expect

In the weeks following surgery, the facial skin and area around the ear may be numb. There may also be some temporary discoloration as healing begins, which may take a few months to disappear. Occasionally, the facial nerve is bruised during surgery, resulting in temporary loss of function or sensation. However, actual permanent damage to the facial nerve is rare.

The healing process is gradual, so you will not notice final results for up to 6 months. A single procedure often achieves the desired results. Most patients who have had face-lifts are pleased with their new, more youthful appearance.

Please visit our Before and After Gallery for Face and Mid-Face Lift.