Preparing for Necklift Surgery
Preparing for your neck lift procedure at The Virginia Institute will include a thorough discussion with Dr. V. She will evaluate your general health, consider any pre-existing health conditions or risk factors you might have, and learn about your lifestyle and expectations. She will also measure your face, take pictures for your medical records, explore any risks or potential complications, and recommend a customized course of treatment designed especially for you. If you decide to have neck lift surgery, Dr. V will explain the different techniques and the type of anesthesia she will use. She will encourage you to voice any questions and concerns you might have and you will receive specific instructions on how to prepare for your surgery. Most neck lifts are performed under local anesthesia, combined with a sedative to make you drowsy however in some cases, a general anesthesia may be used.
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The Necklift Procedure
Your neck can be corrected in several ways. Patients with marked skin excess or severe skin laxity are best treated by a total neck lift while patients with subplatysmal fat or mild to moderate skin and muscle laxity can be treated with a neck lift through a chin incision only. This is an anterior approach and patients should expect a change only in profile only with no improvement on the midface.
Depending on your situation, Dr. V performs neck lift surgery in a variety of ways to improve your neck’s appearance including:
In addition to your neck lift, Dr. V may also perform liposuction to remove any excess fat from your neck area. When liposuction is performed in conjunction with either a Cervicoplasty or Platysmaplasty, it is typically the first procedure. During your liposuction, Dr. V will make small (less than 1/2 inch) incision in your neck and a cannula is inserted attached to a suction machine. Your liposuction procedure may take up to an hour and the results will be permanent. Following your liposuction, you may experience numbness or tingling around the incision site but these symptoms are temporary.
The goal behind Cervicoplasty is to remove excess skin in the neck region. In this procedure, Dr. V will make an incision beneath your chin allowing her to cut the skin back, lift the skin, and finally secure the treated area with fixed sutures.
Platysmaplasty will tighten the middle area of your neck by realigning the muscles or removing a portion of them. Once they have been aligned, they will be permanently sutured in place. Your stitches will secure the layers of tissue and close the incisions and metal clips are sometimes used in the scalp. • A neck lift surgery usually takes several hours or longer if you have more than one procedure. Following your procedure, a small, thin tube may be temporarily placed under your skin behind your ear to drain any fluid that may collect there. Dr. V may also recommend that you wear a medical compression bandage to help reduce post-operative swelling. This should be worn night and day for at least 5-7 days and then only at night for a longer period of time as necessary.
Recovering From a Necklift
It is important that you understand recovery from a neck lift takes time and you should be patient with the process. Most people can return to work in 7-14 days however if you are physically active, you will have to wait at least three weeks to resume those activities. At the beginning, your face may look and feel strange and your features may be distorted from the swelling. Some bruising may persist for 2-3 weeks however by the third week you will look and feel better.
Complications are rare but all surgical procedures carry some risk and possible side effects from your neck lift surgery include:
- Swelling and bruising that can last for several days
- Tightness, tingling, and burning or tugging sensations
- Numbness on your skin
- Risk of infection
- Allergic reactions to medications given during or after your surgery
The results of your neck lift are visible almost immediately but it will take several months for all of the swelling to subside. Because of the minimally invasive techniques used at The Virginia Institute, you will have some scars but they are usually hidden by your hair or in the natural creases of your face and ears. They will fade within time and eventually they should be barley noticeable.
Contact The Virginia Institute of Surgical Arts by clicking here or calling 703-327-8200.