I am scheduled for a facelift, brow lift, eyelid lift, CO2 laser, fat injections. I am 49 years old and very scared of the surgery itself. How long will the results last? Will I always look about 10 years younger? Or will I waste my money and assume the risk for something lasting only a couple of years and needs augmentation with fillers, Botox etc? Can anyone please help? I am in a panic and running out of time.
Can Long Term Results Be Expected from Multiple Facial Surgeries?
Doctor Answers (23)
Facelift surgery can give long lasting results
Surgical procedures make permanent changes to the face and aging will not continue in the same way as it would have if you had not had surgery. However, we are not setting the new face in stone, the aging process does continue as age and gravity continue to have their effects. I prefer to think that facial surgery sets the clock back, for instance to make you look more like you did 10 years ago. Then the clock starts ticking again, but the time point has been reset. For example, if you are 50 now but find that your face looks older than you feel, surgery might restore your face to how you looked at 40. Then, if your face ages again over the next 10 years, looking 50 at age 60 may not be uncomfortable for you.
It is probably not reasonable to expect that you will never want anything else done to your face as you age but after a facelift, things like Botox and injectible fillers can be little tweaks to maintain the best possible result.
I am concerned that you feel so anxious about whether or not you are doing the correct thing. It is normal to be nervous before surgery, but you should be able to comfortably make the decision with help from your surgeon that you are choosing the correct course. Don't do something in a state of panic.
Longevity of a facelift
Typically, facelift patients can expect to look younger after their facelift. How much younger depends on many factors, including on how many procedures they have.
Generally, facelift patients are always "ahead of the game" by that many years, although time does pass, fat disappears from the face, tissue sags, etc.
The success after rejuvenation surgery depends also heavily on the surgeon. With respect to the facelift itself, every surgeon has his or her own style with respect to tightness, preservation of earlobe, hairline, and natural direction of pull.
Surgeons also differ in their ability and willingness to perform extra procedures for aspects of aging that are not helped with the facelift and eyelid surgery.
If you figure that every year patients have more fat loss and drooping, more sun damage, etc., it is expected that patients will still require Botox and fillers to look their best.
Long term effects of facial surgery
If your skin isn't too sun damaged, if you haven't had bad acne scars, and if you don't have wide weight swings, you should get a nice result from the procedures you describe IF you have chosen the best plastic surgeon in your area. The results of the same surgery by two different surgeons will be very different. You will start aging after the surgery but will always look better having done it than not.
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Full facial rejuvenation can produce a balanced, long lasting result
The combination of procedures you've described is a full facial rejuvenation. For patients who have aging changes that affect the entire face, a full facial rejuvenation can produce a beautiful, balanced, long lasting result, improving all aspects of facial aging. Done properly, combination facial procedures should be safe. How long will the improvement last? Well, the aging clock ticks on, but, having had the procedure, you will always look better than you would have otherwise.
Most patients do look younger, but more importantly, they look rested, relaxed, and rejuvenated. Bear in mind, even the best done facelift might need a little occasional fine tuning with Botox or fillers. If you are nervous, definitely spend more time with your surgeon and decide if the combination is right for you.
Anxiety, not panic, is normal before multiple facial surgeries
That's a lot of surgeries you are considering. Some anxiety is normal before facial surgeries but if you are in a panic mode. something is not right. Either you are not sure about the surgeries or the surgeon. I would recommend you spend some time with your surgeon, ask him/her a lot of questions. Consider doing it in stages, start with something simple like the upper blepharoplasty. Then do the browlift. Do the CO2 laser last. In general surgery will turn back the clock but will not stop the clock. You will always look better than if you did not do anything.
Long-lasting facelift results and comfort with your decision
Most patients that consult me have been carefully considering facial cosmetic surgery for some time, and doing their research. Selection of an experienced facelift, etc. surgeon is very important. The surgeon and their office staff should have provided you with plenty of information; first, in order to decide on surgeon and procedures, and second, to reduce your fears by helping you understand the recovery and care you'll get.
Your face, brow & eyelids will typically be changed permanently by the procedures you mention. They will likely always look better than if you had never had the surgery, but surgery will not stop future skin and deep tissue aging. Genetics, sun exposure, smoking history and other factors affect the duration of surgical results. You should not be surprised that you would consider future procedures in order to maintain future results.
One other thought. Although it is normal to be nervous before surgery you should not be in a panic. Perhaps you are trying to get too much done with all these procedures. You need to talk to your surgeon and perhaps you should pick one or two things to do instead of trying to do everything. You can see how you do and then come back and do more procedures once you see how things go.
Fear Before Surgery???
If you have any doubts about your upcoming surgery you must address them with your surgeon.
Ask yourself what are you afraid of? anesthesia, complications, pain, poor results?
Once you ask yourself and get an honest answer then bring this up with your surgeon. If he/she can calm your fears, great proceed with surgery otherwise cancel it.
In terms of all the abov procedures, you should look good and for about 10 years younger. However, it is important to maintain the looks with any needed fillers or botox etc. Aging is an ongoing process and you have to keep working on slowing it.
It's normal to be nervous before cosmetic facial plastic surgery
If you weren't nervous you wouldn't be normal. As long as you have chosen a quality surgeon who specializes in facial rejuvenation, most patients get very good results. It is difficult to predict how long the results will last. The first answer I give to my patients is that facelifts last for the rest of your life. What I mean is that if you have a twin sister and she doesn't get a facelift, in 10 years you will still look 10 to 15 years younger. What surgery does is turn the clock back, not stop the clock. Your skin will continue to age as well. It is good time to start practicing sun protection on a daily basis, not just when you are out at the beach or playing golf or tennis; a minimum of SPF 20 and when in the sun at least SPF 30.
If you still have questions or concerns, talk with either your surgeon or a staff member. We often have patient advocates in our offices who are used to worried patients and can help allay your fears about upcoming surgery.
Good facelifts last longer than poorly performed facelifts
You should have long term results that last forever if done by an experienced facelift surgeon. The excess skin that is removed during surgery is gone forever--but you do still continue to age. Discuss your concerns with your surgeon to lessen your anxiety.
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.