The neck may sag as a result of aging or weight loss, and is often affected before the face. Loose neck muscles can lead to an appearance of bands on the neck or drastic drooping of the skin. A neck lift is a surgical procedure that can smooth and tighten the skin on the neck and provide a more toned and youthful appearance. The results of this procedure offer a drastic improvement to the appearance of the neck and subtle changes to overall appearance. A neck lift may be performed alongside a facelift, or may be performed alone, after which your friends and family may not even realize that a surgical procedure was performed.
The Neck Lift Procedure Process
The neck lift procedure begins with making a small, inconspicuous incision directly below the chin, and in some cases behind the crease of the ears as well. The neck lift includes both a cervicoplasty to remove excess skin and a platysmaplasty to remove or alter muscles in the neck. Liposuction can also be used to remove excess fat during a neck lift. The incisions will then be sutured closed and the neck lift is completed.
The entire neck lift procedure takes two to three hours and may be performed under general or local anesthesia with sedation, depending on the preference of the patient. Most procedures are performed on an outpatient basis.
Recovery From A Neck Lift
Swelling and bruising from a neck lift can last up to 10 days. Applying cold compresses and keeping the head elevated for the first 48 hours following surgery minimizes swelling. Keeping the head still, and avoiding turning or twisting it for the first few days post-surgery, is recommended. Medication is prescribed to help alleviate discomfort.
Most people return to work and other normal daily activities within 2 weeks, after which bruising and swelling have subsided. More strenuous activities should be avoided for 4 to 6 weeks.
Risks and Complications of a Neck Lift
Although rare, possible risks and complications of a neck lift include the following:
- Excessive bleeding
- Tissue death
- Blood clots
- Intense itching
- Skin discoloration
- Persistent swelling