Candidates for Neck Lift
Candidates for neck lift surgery include women or men who desire to improve the contour of the neck because of one or both of these reasons:
• sagging and loose skin at the neck.
• fullness of the neck due to prominent subplatysmal fat, muscle, or glands.
Ideal patients are in good overall health and have skin that has retained some flexibility and elasticity. It is important that patients do not smoke or use nicotine products before and after the procedure. The typical age of our patients undergoing neck lifting is 25 to 70 years old, however there is no standard age range. Candidates for the procedure are based on indications, which includes excess skin, laxity, fullness of the neck, and/or platysma banding. Dr. Foulad will perform a thorough evaluation to help you decide which surgery or alternative treatment would best meet your goals.
How Neck Lift is Performed
Neck lift surgery is often performed under twilight sedation or local anesthesia depending the complexity of the case and patient preference. Incisions are made under the chin and/or behind the ears. The fat under the skin, but above the platysma muscle, can be reduced with micro-liposuction or direct excision if indicated. If deep neck work is planned, an incision is made through the center of the platysma muscle in order to reach the deep compartment of the neck. Then, reduction of the deep fat, deep muscles (e.g. digastric muscle), and submandibular glands can be performed if needed. The platysma muscle can then be tightened.
How to Prepare for a Neck Lift
In preparation for undergoing neck lift surgery, we need to ensure that you are healthy and optimized for the procedure. Depending on your age, medical history, and complexity of your case, medical evaluation by your primary care provider may be required. Certain medications and supplements might have to be stopped a specific time period prior to the procedure to reduce various risks. It is important that you do not not smoke or use nicotine products 1-2 months prior to your procedure. You will be provided more comprehensive pre-operative instructions specific to your individual case.
We are conveniently located to serve Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, & Los Angeles. However, we are available to help with coordinating your stay if you are an Out-of-Town Patient.
What to Expect After a Neck Lift
Pain is usually mild and most patients require no to minimal pain medication, such as Tylenol. Some patients may have more significant pain and require stronger pain medication, however it would be uncommon to have significant pain after several days. In some cases, it may be recommended to sleep with your head and back elevated for at least the first week after the procedure.
A thick cotton dressing is wrapped around your head and neck for 1 to 2 days after your procedure. After that, you may be recommended to wear an elastic velcro neck strap. The amount of time you should be wearing the neck strap will be customized depending on the specifics of your individual case and how much swelling you have. If drains were placed during your procedure, they are usually removed 1-3 days later.
Swelling and bruising typically increases during the first 3 to 4 days. Patients typically go back to work 1 to 2 weeks after the procedure. By two weeks, sufficient swelling and bruising have reduced that most patients see a significant improvement in their neck and feel comfortable resuming social activities. However, it will take several more months for the majority of the healing to occur and the swelling to resolve.
NECK LIFT faq
Am I a better candidate for neck liposuction or neck lift?
Neck liposuction is a great option for individuals who desire to reduce the fat at their neck (e.g. under their chin). However, this procedure is recommended for individuals who are younger with elastic skin (or it can lead to saggy skin). In addition, neck liposuction is ideal in situations that the neck fullness is due to fat located above the platysma muscle.
If the fullness of the neck is due to fat, muscles, or glands under the platysma muscle, then a central neck lift may be recommended in order to be able to best contour those layers. In addition, a neck lift will enable tightening and contouring of the platysma muscle.
If there is skin laxity, then a neck lift involving incisions behind the ear would be recommended in order to reduce the excess skin.
Are the neck lift incisions visible?
The incision under the chin is typically made within a natural crease where the chin meets the neck. The location of this incision, combined with meticuluous suturing, typically makes it so that the incision is not noticable.
If incisions are made behind the ear, they are hidden in the crease behnd the ear. If it is required to extend the incison to the scalp, the incision will be in a visible region, but often is hard to see because it is placed along or in the hairline as much as possible, tension is avoided at the incision (to reduce the risk of widened scars), and careful suturing is performed.