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Facelifting – Keeping It Real

For long-lasting results, the facelift remains the gold standard, according to Sydney plastic surgeon Dr Darryl Hodgkinson.

Before and after facelift, removal of basal cell carcinoma and nasal reconstruction by Dr Hodgkinson
Before and after facelift, removal of basal cell carcinoma and nasal reconstruction by Dr Hodgkinson
 Before and after facelift by Dr Hodgkinson
 Before and after facelift by Dr Hodgkinson

A recent survey of surgical and non-surgical cosmetic surgery patients revealed that the most satisfied patients are those who actually had a surgical procedure rather than a non-surgical procedure. The reason for this is that a surgical procedure typically gives a much more lasting and dramatic result than non-surgical approaches. Although I perform non-surgical procedures, I do this in situations where a minimal improvement will satisfy the patient.

Assessing a patient’s needs and whether they can be satisfied by a minimal approach is an important aspect of the cosmetic surgical consultation. Although facelifting requires a recuperative period of at least seven to 10 days as well as swelling and some discomfort which may take weeks to resolve, in my experience it results in significant improvements which are usually accompanied by positive comments from friends and associates.

A facelift surgically elevates sagging tissues and readjusts the contours of the ageing face, caused by fat accumulation or fat degeneration. The main contributors to the appearance of the ageing face are lax facial skin and tissues such as the skin, facial muscles and fat. The sagging tissues, especially around the jaw and neck are corrected by the suspension of the platysma muscle and tightening and anchoring of the SMAS.

All scars are hidden as much as possible within the hairline and behind the ear, as well as perhaps a small incision under the chin.

The most common age for facelifts in women is 45 to 60; for men, 50 to 60 years of age. I reserve non-surgical procedures such as Thermage and injectables as adjuncts to facelifting procedures, or for patients under the 45- to 50-year-old age group.

In my practice, surgical procedures are carried out on an outpatient surgical basis in our fully licensed accredited day surgery and patients go home or to a local facility, accompanied by a private personal nurse who is fully cognisant with the requirements of patients in their postoperative period.

For real results and long-lasting satisfaction, the surgical approach is often the best option.