A slender contour of the neck is not only perceived as an elegant transition between the shoulders and the face, it also leads to a well-defined jawline. The latter has the potential to accentuate facial attractiveness implying a youthful and toned look.
A heavy or sagging neck interferes with a defined look of the lower third of your face. This can be due to genetic inheritance or as a consequence of aging and sun damage. Neck lift surgery is an excellent option to treat the heavy or tired look of a neck and achieve a more defined neck angle. Although a neck lift I soften combined with a face lift, it is also a very effective stand-alone procedure.
What is the goal of neck lift surgery?
The goal of a neck lift is to tighten the skin of the neck, to remove excess fat deposits if required, in order to create a smooth and toned contour of the neck with a more defined angle. Depending on the individual anatomy of a neck, various techniques can be combined in order to accomplish the established goals.
What are the benefits of neck lift surgery?
By reducing the fullness of a heavy neck or removing any excess skin, we create smooth contours that allow our eyes to see distinct transitions of light and shadow. These demarcations help us appreciate aesthetic subunits between your shoulders, your neck and your face. A well-defined jawline accentuates a slender and youthful appearance of the face. such a result can restore self-confidence and boost self-esteem.
What are the reasons for the appearance of a heavy neck?
The three main reasons for a heavy appearance of a neck are:
- excessive volume due to an accumulation of fat tissue (this phenomenon can be hereditary, therefore unrelated to age or personal body weight – some athletic patients can still have an undesirable “double-chin”. Age-related fat displacement also leads to jowl formation and loss of definition across the jawline
- laxity of the platysma muscle (a thin muscle sheath that is attached to the skin around the neck). Loss of tone and volume in the platysma can lead to vertical banding in the neck, which may also create two paired bands in the midline
- loss of skin tone (reduction of collagen, hyaluronic acid and elastin), which is accelerated through sun damage, results in excess skin and sagging
Before your procedure
Everybody’s anatomy is unique and requires an individualised approach. The level of skin laxity and fat accumulation vary in each individual patient. This is something that will be taken into consideration when formulating a surgical plan.
During your consultation we will review your medical history, assess your area of concern and what you would like to achieve. In order to assess if you are an ideal candidate for a neck lift, Mr. Bran will examine the anatomy of your neck. Apart from a physical examination in order to analyse your anatomy, we put great emphasis on understanding how you feel about your face and what kind of an improvement you are most comfortable with. Appreciating your personal aesthetics and managing your expectations is key to any surgical planning by Mr. Bran. Based on the clinical findings and your personal motivation he will then be able to elaborate realistic goals. During your consultation photograph will be taken for your medical record.
You will have a discussion about how the procedure is performed, possible risks of surgery, and what to expect during your recovery period. You will also have the opportunity to ask any other question you may have. Depending on your age and health we might require additional tests prior to surgery.
Preparing for your neck lift surgery
Preoperative assessment is critical in order to select appropriate patients for neck lift surgery. Apart from a physical examination you will have a discussion about your current and past medical history, and any medication you are currently taking or have recently taken. You will be asked about allergies, particularly drug allergies. If required, an anaesthetist will see you before your surgery. Depending on your medication, you may be asked to stop or change certain drugs for a duration of time.
You should refrain from taking Aspirin, or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as Ibuprofen in the week leading up to your surgery.
In order to optimise your healing, we strongly advise all our patients to stop smoking at a minimum of 2 weeks prior to your surgery and refrain from cigarettes or any other nicotine containing products for 2 weeks after their procedure. Smoking significantly impairs your post-operative recovery and doubles the risk of complications such as delayed wound healing, poor scars or altered results.
RISKS NECK LIFT SURGERY
In accordance with the Montgomery judgement, the following risks and side-effects are associated with necklift surgery:
|PAIN||Moderate discomfort is expected; suitable pain medication will be provided.|
|BRUISING||Uncommon, may last for 2-3 weeks. Avoid Aspirin / Ibuprofen.|
|SWELLING||Swelling will occur. It can take 2-3 weeks to fully resolve.|
|BLEEDING||Rare. Haematoma formation (blood collection – risk is less than 0.1%) may require drainage or return to surgery.|
|INFECTION||Occasionally, mild infection. Rarely serious infection. If required, appropriate antibiotics will be prescribed.|
|SCARRING||With any incision there is a risk of delayed healing and poor scarring, which can lead to hypertophic scars or keloid formation.|
|Some diminished sensation is expected around the scar and the tissue of the neck. It can take 6-12 months to return to normal.|
|FIRMNESS||Initially the neck will be slightly swollen and firm. Uncommonly the firmness persists or recurs some months post-operatively. This may alter softness and cause discomfort.|
|ASYMMETRY||Uncommon, any pre-operative asymmetry will be pointed out and the operation will aim to improve this.|
|This is a clot that forms in the deep veins of the lower limbs causing pain, inflammation, and swelling. This will require immediate medical attention.|
|This is a clot which has travelled to the lungs causing chest pain and shortness of breath. This will require immediate medical attention.|
A good candidate for neck lift surgery has one or more of the following:
- Good physical health and a stable body weight
- excess, hanging skin on the neck and near the chin
- bands on the neck
- excess fat in the neck and under the chin
- realistic goals and expectations
- unrealistic expectations
- you are a heavy smoker
Neck lift surgery is usually offered as a day case procedure, performed under general anaesthetic. Patients who do not have excess skin due to laxity usually do not require a full neck lift. Less invasive techniques, such a liposuction of the neck, can be offered under local anaesthetic as a day case procedure.
Usually neck lift surgery takes approximately 2 hours to perform, however if you have additional procedures, operating time will increase accordingly.
The results after neck lift surgery are first and foremost natural. You will be able to appreciate the improvements for approximately 5-10 years. Although the ageing process will unfortunately still have its effect on the appearance of your face and neck in various ways, the contours of the not increase in volume again should you maintain a stable weight.
Minimal discomfort is expected. This includes swelling of the operated area. Bruising is uncommon. You will be given adequate pain medication to keep your discomfort at a minimum.
We advise our patients to plan enough time for their recovery. In the first week you should expect swelling around your neck. In order to keep discomfort at a minimum, we advise our patients to wear the garment. You will receive this garment as part of the after-care package. You are to wear it 24 hours daily for the first seven days after your procedure, and only at night for the following two weeks. Discomfort is usually minimal and easily controlled with adequate pain medication. We advise our patients to avoid strenuous exercise, avoid bending over and to sleep in an elevated position of the upper body in order to control post-operative swelling and protect your healing incisions. Mr. Bran and his team will guide you through your healing process at all postoperative visits to ensure a smooth recovery. Patients can go back to their daily activities within approximately 10 days after surgery.
You will be able to appreciate the new silhouette of your neck immediately after your neck lift procedure. During the first two weeks after your surgery some swelling will appear which will obscure the result for that time. Results are considered final after approximately 2-3 months, when residual swelling has subsided.
Depending on the technique, incisions will be placed in a natural crease around your earlobes, in the groove behind your ears and underneath your chin. Scars will be visible for the first months after surgery. As the scars continue to mature, they will become less noticeable. Mr. Bran wrote his PhD on scar treatment and has a particular interest in scars and the management of them. He continuously improves his surgical techniques in order to create superior results with the least noticeable scars.
What can complement neck lift surgery?
Other beneficial procedures that can complement neck lift surgery include face lift, lip lift, or chin augmentation surgery. As a non-surgical addition many patients benefit from >Wrinkle-filler our unique all-natural and patient blood-based skin treatment > NABFAB.
In order to find out more you should book a confidential consultation with Mr. Bran. As an expert in facial plastic surgery, he will be able to answer all of your questions and explain the details of your tailored procedure.