Facelift

Facelift 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.

The skin begins to wrinkle and sag as a result of age, sun exposure and genetics. Children and young adults have smooth, round faces due to evenly distributed fatty tissues in facial contours. Over time, the skin sags and folds in the chin, jawline and neck become prominent. Not only does a facelift improve facial appearance but also has a dramatic effect on the neck, enhancing its contour and profile.

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


Fill out our Appointment Form or call us at Murray Oral & Facial Surgery Phone Number 530-343-1685 if you have any questions or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Murray today!


Before Surgery

We will evaluate your medical history in order to determine your overall health.

Dr. Murray 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 be taken to help illustrate the changes of the surgery.

Preoperative Instructions: Avoid drugs before surgery that can prolong bleeding for a week to ten days. These medications can include Aspirin, Plavix, Vitamin E, Ginko, Garlic, and Giloba. Stopping these medications will be discussed during the consultation and may require coordination with your medical doctor. You may be required to take antibiotics to prevent infection. You may be instructed to shampoo your hair the night before surgery.

The Procedure

A facelift is frequently performed in conjunction with blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery), forehead lift, fat grafting, facial resurfacing, chin augmentation, and/or liposuction, to create an overall rejuvenation of the face.

Facelifts are performed under general anesthesia in a surgery center where the patient is carefully monitored.

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 after surgery. Initially you will have a large dressing wrapped around your head. You may have surgical drains attached to bulbs hanging 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.

The doctor may remove stitches at more than one appointment to enhance healing. The small scars are hidden within the natural creases of the face and fade with time. 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 facelift are rare. These include bleeding, infection, 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 7 to 10 days of the surgery. The risk of wound complications increases in diabetics, persons with a history of radiation, autoimmune and collagen disease as well as individuals who smoke.

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 have decreased feeling. 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 a few months. A single procedure often achieves the desired results. Most patients who have had facelifts are pleased with their new, more youthful appearance.


Fill out our Appointment Form or call us at Murray Oral & Facial Surgery Phone Number 530-343-1685 if you have any questions or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Murray today!