I had a lower face lift that included the neck.
I went for my first consult with Dr. Roberts and looked no further. This was quite an expense for me, someone who never spends money on herself, and so I had done plenty of research online. His website explains what he does to obtain the optimium outcome, so I will not get into detail, I will just say that he delivers.
I made the appointment for my pre-op appointment (where I was given my prescription for antibiotics and pain killers, plus my list of do's, dont's, and agreements to sign) and my surgery date.
I will tell you that the night before, I was very close to cancelling. A lot of anxiety about what-if's and telling myself that I should not be vain....
Anyway, showed up at 7:30 and was taken straight back to a room to put a gown on and get marked up. Then I was taken to the O.R. and settled in to get the IV started (LOVED the anesthesiologist--so kind and not even the tiniest bruising). Then I was told to take a nice nap and that is all I remember until coming to in the recovery area. The same lovely nurse was with me the whole time, but I only remember bits and pieces of recovery. I believe I was there for an hour before the nurse helped me get dressed and my husband came to get me. I was wheeled out and brought home. It is all quite odd, because, for me, I remember snippets of what happened after it was over. I believe I was there over 5 hours.
My husband had been given aftercare instructions and I had my appointment for the following day. I cannot stress this enough---don't be brave and think you will be fine alone. Even though I had everything I needed (you will be given a list) I still remember very little about that night and even the next day, including my follow up.
What I remember the next day is getting in the car, husband drove (apparently, I had showered and managed to dress with help) sitting in the exam room, Dr Roberts telling me he was going to take the drains out, and him asking me if I was okay when he had to add a couple of stitches (didn't feel a thing). I remember nothing else, even though the bandage was taken off and replaced with an ace bandage. That is the way the anasthesia affected me. I was lucid but simply have holes in my memory, for about a full 24 hours. YMMV.
Pain. Yes there was. I had been given the standard Lortab, which I believe is acetominophen and codeine. I had used it many, many years ago and was okay with it, but this time, it only worked for about 2-1/2 hours for me and it can only be taken every four to six hours. IF I could have stayed on top of the pain, I would have felt better.
So I would say pain (for me and my situation) for three to four days and discomfort thereafter, until yesterday, when I finally took ibuprofen and felt 1000 times better. If only I had known......
For a week, it was head elevated about 30 degrees, clean sutures with peroxide and apply polysporin twice daily, and wear ace bandage 24/7. Showers but no hair washing for 8 days (yuck) to keep stiches dry. I was given a hint that pillows on either side of me would stop me from rolling onto my side (do NOT disturb your doctor's handiwork).
I had no bleeding. Not a drop.
You will look like Mrs. Potato Head and your ears will be 99% numb, as will the jaw area. I am on day 8 and the swelling is about 50% down and there is a little feeling coming back. I can open my mouth about two inches. My neck muscles feel tight when chewing, but I am told that's normal. Still eating soft foods. A good purchase would have been a baby spoon as they are shallower.
Stitches out yesterday on day 7 and I was quite nervous as I had discovered that cleaning them made me woozy, but then, I come from a long line of fainters so it most likely will not happen to you. Did not need to be nervous as I only felt a slight tugging because of the numbness and the fact that the nurse kept me chatting (I had warned her). I was assured that all was normal and to alternate ice and warm compresses to try to get the bruising and swelling moving. I will add that no ice previous to that. Possibly because you may cause damage to the skin as you cannot feel how cold it is.
Bruising was never too bad. It did not show up until about day 3. Mostly yellow and a couple of small patches of purple. I would go out tomorrow, my hair hides the scars, which go from my sideburn area, down the crease of the ear, inside the tragus, down around the earlobe and up into the hair about an inch. I have a two inch scar under my chin. Maybe there were about 7 stiches which you cannot tell were there. Just red. Even now, pretty freshly done, they are very narrow. I am impressed and it takes a lot to impress me.
I will try to get some photo's up as soon as I can.