I have horrible scarring (looks jagged and webbed) around my ears from the Lifestyle Lift I had last year. I have used every scar therapy on the market. What can be done to repair these scars without surgery?
Can Old Lifestyle Lift Scars Still Be Repaired?
Doctor Answers (4)
Repairing LifeStyle Lift scarring
One of the shortcomings of the LSL, in my opinion, is the closure under tension. That means the incisions were closed tightly. Tightly closed incisions stretch, causing bad scarring. The dermis, the deep layer of tissue, rips apart and becomes wide, resulting in a wide scar. If you look at the problem from an anatomic point of view, how will creams and lasers put back together a ripped dermis? They unfortunately cannot.
So there are no non-surgical ways of fixing bad scars beyond the usual creams and silicone gels, and the scars should be revised.
There are many other shortcomings of the LSL as well, in my opinion. Many of the LSL patients I have seen in consultation have had large, pulled down ears. They still had considerable sagging of the tissues of the jowl and neck area. These derived directly from the shortcoming of a minimal surgery: the target tissues were not optimally elevated and fixated into position. Rather, stretch was placed on the tissues near the ears, where the incisions were made.
Fortunately when LSL minilifts are revised, these are all usually correctable. There is one last, non quantifiable element that can be added when the revision facelift is performed by a top board certified plastic surgeon with special interest in revision facelifts: artistry.
Yes, the lifestyle lift can be repaired, your pocket book cannot.
The limited scars around your ears from the lifestyle lift result in the scalloped appearance you describe quite often.. The best way to correct these is to excise the scars, remove any tension on the skin by perfoming a SMAS facelift and then carefully insetting the skin like an artist places the paint on the canvas!
I have had several opportunities to correct these problems with a happy patient at the end of each procedure.
In the end, leave plastic surgery to the plastic surgeons!
Robert M. Freund, MD, FACS
New York, NY
Lifestyle lift scars
I have seen lifestyle lift patients in my practice who presented with thickened scars around the ears as well as behind the ears. A few of them have also had recurrent jowling and laxity in the neck because the lift did not hold.
The reason that the scar thickens is because there is too much tension placed on the skin when it is being closed. This tension should be on the muscle. Many patients also get a "pixie ear" appearance when the ear lobe is stretched and closed under too much tension.
Fortunately, many of the scarring problems are amenable to surgical correction. The lift is revised and the scar is excised and the skin is closed under no tension. Most of the time this can resolve the problem. Unfortunately, for the patient it is an additional procedure and more recovery time. I would visit with an experienced and qualified plastic or facial plastic surgeon for an evaluation.
Ask the surgeon how much experience they have with facelift complications. There are many well trained plastic and facial plastic surgeons who do not have a lot of experience specifically with facelift procedures. I would make sure that you address this issue with each surgeon you visit with. I hope this helps.
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Lifestyle Lift scars can be repaired
This is a problem that could happen with regular Facelift, Lifestyle Lift, Mini-Facelift, and any other surgical Facelift procedure. It's because the surgery was closed under tension at the skin instead of placing the tension where it belongs: at the subcutaneous tissues (SMAS).
The best way to correct this problem is to remove the old scar, support the tissues at the subcutaneous (SMAS) level, and re-drape the skin carefully with out any tension.
I have corrected this problem in several patients that come from respected plastic surgery clinics.
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.