How new is this? Is the healing time faster? Does the surgery take less time?
What Are the Benefits of Using a Laser to Do Facelift?
Doctor Answers (9)
Laser assisted facelifting will be more common in the years to come
I introduced laser assisted facelifting three years ago. The technique involves using the SmartLipo laser to elevate the facial flap. We have done over 600 procedures with a low rate of complications. We have presented our techniques in the US, Canada, Europe, South America and Asia. We have trained many Plastic Surgeons in these techniques and Dr. Khoury in one who has visited our center for hands on training. The advantages are less bleeding for surgeon less bruising for patient, quicker surgery due to less bleeding. The main advantage is that my patients continue to notice tightening of their faces up to one year after the procedure. This is because the laser stimulates collagen production and contraction. Usually after three months a facelift starts to "fall" and the results are less impressive after that time. Laser under the skin need to be distinguished from lasers treating the skin. You can also treat under the skin and on top of the skin and this procedure is termed the "SmartLook". Beware of surgeons who are not trained in these techniques as they have no frame of reference for whether it helps to use the laser or not. They are simply not experienced with the technique. For information on Smartlifting google "SmartLifting" or see our link below
Lasers in Facelift
The laser can be used for the elevation and theoretical tightening of the skin in combination with suture techniques to elevate sagging tissues. Whether the theorized advantages (better skin tightening for using the laser in a certain way) prove to be so is not yet proven by sufficient clinical research.
The procedure has not yet been in enough patients, by enough different surgeons, with long enough post-op observations to give you a good answer about longevity (or its real advantages or disadvantages as compared with other techniques).
Innovation in techniques is critical to progress in surgery, but has value only if it means better results and safety with fewer complications and risks. That can only be determined by the rigors of good clinical studies.
The laser can also be used for skin resurfacing, which can improve texture and color, while reducing wrinkles and fine lines.
The amount of bleeding in Facelift is so minimal that use of the laser is not important to reduce bleeding. There can be other risks in using a laser including burns of the skin, healing problems and seroma, but the incidence of these risks is also quite small, especially in experienced hands.
Laser assited facelifts
Most doctors are referring to laser facelifts in the traditional resurfacing sense. I will tend to agree with most of the comments made by my colleagues here. But there is a new role for lasers in facelifts. Utilizing the laser component of the SmartLipo machine as part of the facelift can be advantageous over traditional facelifts. This is a totally new procedure that applies the laser beam to the under surface of the skin at the beginning of the facelift procedure. The benefits include less bleeding (almost none), less bruising, less swelling, quick recovery. Probably the most beneficial part is the continued skin tightening that occurs months after the procedure is done.
This is similar to SmartLipo to the neck, but extended to the face. Many surgeons perform SmartLipo to the neck and manage to get a considerable amount of skin tightening due to the laser; in addition to fat removal. Same concept applies to the face, but within the confines of a facelift.
Very few surgeons are performing this nationally, Dr. Gentile is one of the pioneers of this method and practices in Ohio.
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Lasers and Facelift
Here is some more useful information. You age in 3 ways redundant skin and underlying supporting structure laxity,volume shifts (loss of volume in the cheeks, gain in the jowls and submental), and skin surface aging - wrinkles, large pores, age spots). It is important to understand that facelifts are meant to remove major folds and wrinkles, not fine wrinkles. A facelift which removed every line and fold would be too aggressive and would result in an unnatural result. The goal of our surgeons is to make your facelift look as natural as possible. Face lifts do not change the quality of the skin and volume issues are best managed by fillers or fat transfer. Skin aging is accelerated by smoking .
Fine lines and wrinkles are better addressed by skin treatments such as chemical peels or microdermabrasion, which we also offer at our office. Many of our facelift patients enhance their surgical result with these nonsurgical procedures.
LASERs and Facelifts
LASERs can be helpful in skin resurfacing, changing the appearance of skin from crepey to smooth. Facelifts function to lift the deeper tissues of the face so that the patient can have robust changes to the neck, jawline and facial shape. Think of LASERs and facelifts as complementary modalities and not in competition with each other. Both can serve an important role in facial rejuenvation.
Some surgeons will use LASERs to make an incision. There really is no evidence that a LASER will make a superior incision than a scalpel. In addition, LASERs in this role can have serious consequence including the potential to burn hair, tissue, etc. Good looking incisions are a result of a combination of factors, including surgical technical excellence.
There is no benefit, other than marketing, in doing a facelift with a laser. The surgeon is the key, not the instrument. See an experienced facelift surgeon who does natural results.
Laser with a facelift
If you are asking about a laser instead of a facelift then there is a big difference. Think of a facelift as alterations and a laser as a pressing!
Laser will remove fine lines and wrinkles. It can improve skin tone and color and tighten the skin a little.
If you are asking about a facelift done with a laser there is very little difference. The laser then acts as a tool to cut and nothing more.
On some patients, I perform a light laser resurfacing at the time of a face lift to act as a shrink wrap and tighten the skin a little more without the pulled look.
I hope this answers your question.
Benefits of Using a Laser to do Facelift
Laser does not add anything to the technique of a facelift. The only roll it can have is in skin resurfacing especially in the lower eyelid.
Laser facelifts are not the same as real facelifts
A laser can tighten the skin in properly selected individuals a little bit. The effect is not the same as a properly done facelift so make sure you don't misundersatnd and think the two are equal.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.