How the Procedure is Done
Surgery is done under general anesthesia. A neck lift involving the removal of excess skin usually takes about two hours but can be extended if other cosmetic procedures are done in conjunction such as laser liposuction of the neck (to remove fatty deposits under the neck and chin), tightening of the neck muscles, or other facial procedures such as a face lift.
Muscles can be tightened during a neck lift to give the neck a smoother, tighter appearance. This procedure is called a "platysmaplasty". The muscles are then tightened up using a crisscross of suture material and then gently pulled into their corrected position. Skin incisions are closed with delicate dissolvable sutures to produce the most minimal scar possible.
Once surgery has been completed, patients will be required to wear a compression garment that holds the skin and muscles in their new position. It must be worn for about 4 weeks after the surgery.
Patients can expect to have some post-surgical swelling and bruising as well as discomfort. We will prescribe painkillers for the first week to ten days after surgery.
After that, over-the-counter pain medication such as Extra Strength Tylenol is usually sufficient. Patients can return to work in about 10-14 days. Strenuous physical activity needs to be avoided for at least 3-4 weeks and perhaps longer depending upon how well the patient is healing.
We schedule several follow up appointments for patients after surgery to monitor the healing process and be sure that there are no complications. We always take before and after pictures to give patients a way to see the dramatic improvements that a neck lift makes.