Last Updated: Nov 11, 2011
As people age, the effects of sun exposure, gravity and daily stress can be seen in their faces. Deep folds eventually form between the nose and mouth, tiny lines creep up around the eyes, and the jaw line grows slack and jowly. A facelift can help treat facial skin laxity and sagging, and the results often last for more than ten years.
Technically known as rhytidectomy, a facelift can't stop the aging process indefinitely. However, it can help turn back the clock by improving skin texture and visible signs of aging. The procedure removes excess skin and tightens the soft tissues of your face, chin and neck. It can improve the jaw line, sagging cheeks and loose neck skin by tightening underlying muscles. The procedure can be done alone, or in combination with other procedures such as a brow lift, eyelid surgery, or rhinoplasty.
You should consult your doctor about facelift options, as there are many variations of facelift surgery. Depending on your individual needs, your surgeon may choose a two-layer face-lift, a skin-only face lift, a thread lift, a deep (subperiosteal) face lift, neck lift, or a laser or endoscopic lift. In a two-layer face-lift (generally the most common and effective procedure), incisions are made along the contour of the ears, extending back into the hairline. The skin is separated from the facial muscles and fat (which may be removed) and pulled up and back. The surgeon usually tightens the underlying tissue, the sub-muscular aponeurotic system (SMAS). The skin is then re-draped and any excess trimmed off. The incisions are then sutured and metal staples may be placed in the scalp for reinforcement. A small drain tube may be inserted under the skin to collect excess blood and avert swelling.
Patients commonly experience moderate facial swelling and bruising for two weeks following surgery. It is normal to experience facial numbness for a few weeks or even months. Surgical scars will take some time to fade, but because they are hidden in the hairline, behind the ears and in natural folds, they shouldn't be very noticeable.
Most people will need assistance for the first couple of days, but as the swelling and pain subside, can gradually resume light activities. Heavy lifting, straining, bending or other strenuous activities should be avoided until all bruises and swelling have subsided. This can take one to two months; however, most patients find that they can engage in social activities within two weeks of surgery. Smoking decreases blood flow to the facial skin, so prospective candidates shouldn't smoke at least a month prior to and a month after surgery. Quitting smoking will help the healing process.
Facelifts are generally performed under general anesthesia. Depending on the extent of the surgery, a facelift may be performed under local anesthesia — while you are numbed and sedated, in a twilight state, or a light general anesthetic, where you are in a light sleep. Surgery time varies from an hour and a half to three hours.
Facelift Surgery Package – 8 days at the Cosmetic Center $6,000.00
Costs include: surgery, surgeon’s fee, anesthesia, pre and post-op appointments, customary medications, transportation to/from the airport and to/from the surgery and primary doctor’s appointments, meals and nursing assistance. Also included are: wireless Internet, private bathrooms, Direct T.V. and telephones (complimentary direct U.S. and Canada calls after 5:00 P.M), high speed computers and an in-room safe.
Airfare and taxes are not included in the packages. Ft. Lauderdale to Costa Rica airfare has never been more reasonable. Check fares at Spirit Air, as low as $160 round trip!