The decision to have a facelift should be taken extremely seriously. This means knowing as much as you possibly can about what to expect. Knowledge both about the procedure itself as well as the post-op experience / recovery are crucial to your being emotionally prepared. In the world of plastic surgery, for the patient, knowledge is king. The more you know what to expect, the more you can manage the many stages of the healing and recovery process. Yet, even being armed with knowledge about every technically beat possible, medicine is not an exact science. There is always the variable of the unknown, both while being operated on and during recovering. You should be prepared and thoroughly briefed by your board certified facial plastic surgeon about potential complications and risks associated with a facelift.
Before being operated on, the surgeon and his staff will go over the risks and you will sign consent forms that you understand it all. Sometimes these consent forms and paperwork can seem overwhelming and the medical jargon may be hard to understand. Take your time to go through it, and feel free to ask questions about anything you don’t understand. Someone will happily explain it to you in a language that makes sense.
Below is a list of the common surgical risks associated with many types of elective, cosmetic surgery.
Possibility of revision surgery
Deep vein thrombosis, cardiac and pulmonary complications
Poor wound healing
Fatty tissue found deep in the skin might die (fat necrosis)
Pain, which may persist
Skin contour irregularities
Skin discoloration, sensitivity or swelling
Numbness or other changes in skin sensation
Here are risks that are more specific to facelifts:
Correctable hair loss at the incisions
Facial nerve injury with weakness
Sutures may spontaneously surface through the skin,
Sutures may become visible or produce irritation that require removal
Unsatisfactory surgical scar location
Unacceptable visible deformities at the ends of the incisions
WHAT YOU CAN DO
Talk to your doctor. Never feel embarrassed or ashamed about your anxieties, fears and second-guessing yourself. This is all totally normal and patients go through a myriad of conflicting feelings once the surgery is on the books. Discuss them all with your doctor. Not only will this inform you with information but also it will solidify a strong doctor patient relationship where trust is the primary factor. Your doctor will appreciate your candidness and investment in the procedure.
AFTER YOUR FACELIFT
It is crucial to follow your surgeon’s post op instructions carefully. You will be given exact steps on how to care yourself post op, and there are not to be taken lightly. These steps are part of the larger recovery process, carefully designed to allow you to heal with optimal results. If you get confused or lost, feel free to contact your surgeon. The surgeon or their PA should be available to you for the days following the procedure for questions or concerns. Of course, if you experience shortness of breath, chest pains, or an unusual heartbeat, do not hesitate to seek medical attention immediately. Should any of these complications occur, you may require hospitalization and additional treatment.
If you are considering a facelift or have questions you would like answered, call our office and book a consultation with Dr. Honrado today 310. 286. 0043