What is a Facelift?
A facelift, or rhytidectomy, is a surgical procedure that improves visible signs of aging in the face and neck, such as:
• Relaxation of the skin of the face causing sagging
• Deepening of the fold lines between the nose and corner of the mouth
• Fat that has fallen or has disappeared
• Jowls developing in the cheeks and jaw
• Loose skin and excess fat of the neck that can appear as a double chin or "turkey neck"
The loss of youthful contours in the face can be due to variety of factors, including thinning of the skin, loss of facial fat, gravity, sun damage, smoking, as well as heredity and stress.
The way a facelift is performed varies depending on the needs, the patient’s facial structure and the extent of correction desired. The three most common incision techniques are:
• Traditional facelift: The “full” facelift for rejuvenating the face, jowls and neck, including fat sculpting, lifting and repositioning of muscle and deeper tissues, and skin trimming and redraping. The incision begins at the temples and travels down to the front of the ear, around the earlobe, and behind the ear to the lower scalp at the hairline. Sometimes, another incision is made under the chin.
• Limited-incision facelift: For limited rejuvenation around the eyes and mouth, including nasolabial folds and other deep creases. Short incisions are made at the temples and around the ear, and, possibly, in the lower eyelids and/or under the upper lip.
• Neck lift: A neck lift concentrates on jowls, loose skin on the neck, and fat under the chin. The incision is made around the ear lobe and behind the ear to the lower scalp.
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