Is Age 76 Too Old for an Acculift?

My cosmetic surgeon did an acculift after a neck and cheek tightening. Before the acculift I looked great. Now I have fatty pockets and loose tissue around my mouth. He was using a new accuift machine with the option to buy and used me for a guinea pig. I believe this acculift procedure should not have been done on me a 76 year old female. Can you give me some insight into to this problem..

Doctor Answers 13

Is 76 too old for a facelift

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If you are healthy and cleared by your doctor for surgery, it is reasonable to have a facelift.  The issue with the Acculift is really one for you to take up with your doctor.

Age for Elective Facial Procedure

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Hi Hortsense,

As other face lift surgeons have already stated, age is not an absolute deciding factor for face lift surgery. Overall physical health is a much more important factor than chronological age.

Face lift surgery is a purely elective procedure to improve one's facial appearance and rejuvenate the face. Both face lift and neck lift are cosmetic procedures that one chooses to reduce the signs of aging. It's an option, among many other good aesthetic options. Your face continues to age with time, despite any treatment or surgery, but will continue to look better than if you've never had face lift surgery.

Anatomically a face lift might be a better aesthetic option, as compared to skin resurfacing, Botox, or injectable fillers (hyaluronic acid, Restylane, etc), or Acculift for one who has loose, sagging skin especially along the jawline (jowls) and neck (turkey gobbler).

A plastic surgeon not only will evaluate your neck and face anatomically, but will also review your medical history, and interview you to help determine if you are an appropriate face lift candidate. Only after speaking with a specialist in facial cosmetic surgery can he/she advise you on your cosmetic options. Best of luck.

Acculift pros and cons

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Acculift is a branded technique that removes fat with a laser.  The descriptions are very vague and include lots of "softening, sculpting, etc" and few details on what is actually done.  Nothing I can see in the descriptions indicates to me it is anything new at all.  The advertisements indicate that it is an alternative for a facelift or fillers, yet it removes volume.  Is this the 80's again?

Once volume is removed, this is a shame, because it can never be used for filling in other areas of the face the way a modern facelift does. The chance to have a proper facelift and restore lost volume and reduce hollowness is now gone.

Responsible plastic surgeons such as the ones addressing this issue on RealSelf can give this advice until they are blue in the face; still patients will flock to the novelty and the glitzy ads.  Their next stop is often the message boards after an unsatisfactory result, as you can judge by RealSelf patients' reviews of minilifts and branded minilifts and how they fared.  It is a mystery to me why so many patients wait until after their surgeries to do their research.

At whatever age you find yourself, having a branded procedure that permanently removes valuable volume from the face may not be the best decision for a patient.

If you have problems after the fact, your best bet is to consult with a plastic surgeon who has an interest in revisional facial surgery for a consultation.

Brent Moelleken, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 188 reviews

I age 76 too old for an acculift?

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Hello! Thank you for your question! Age alone is not a contraindication to a surgical procedure. There are a few medical comorbidities that contribute to a higher risk during any surgical procedure including infections, wound complications, delayed wound healing, bleeding, anesthetic risks, etc. Factors such as diabetes, hypertension, coronary artery disease, heart problems, lung problems, etc are more common in the elderly. However, if you are healthy, or these conditions are well-controlled, you would certainly still be a candidate for a surgical procedure. If your complaints or desires are great enough to consider the surgical option, I would seek a consultation with a plastic surgeon to discuss your complaints and go over the options as well as risks and benefits of the procedure.

You should obtain medical clearance from your primary care physician that you are at an acceptable risk for undergoing a surgical procedure. For elective or aesthetic procedures, your surgeon may want to get you to a reasonable health status prior to consideration for a procedure. Discuss all of your medical comorbidities and medication with your surgeon prior and discuss these risks. Also, discuss this with your anesthesiologist as proper monitoring and medications will be watched closely. This procedure should still be very safe for you and hope for an uncomplicated course with an excellent result! Hope that this helps! Best wishes!

Acculift probably not the best option for those in their 70's and older

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No the Acculift does not replace the need for fillers or face lifting procedures. It is NOT a breakthrough procedure, rather using existing technology a small amount of local anesthesia to numb the treatment areas followed by 1 to 2 mm openings. Through these  openings, a  laser removes fat  (laser lipolysis - several companies offer machines that do this) and there is some limited  tightening of the skin due in part to heat generated. This has a diminished return on those with poor elasticity typically seen in older patients. Unfortunately as we age we loose fat which is why Fillers are so popular. Why would you want to remove fat unless it was required?? This is especially true for men and women in their late 60's and beyond such as you.
Does it replace the need (or reduce it) for cosmetic fillers? - no it reduces volume does not replace it. I would think at best this technology would be used as an adjunct to existing techniques and that there is probably independent risk in using this technique.

Acculift at age 76

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It is very difficult to answer your question without seeing you in person and examining you.  I am sorry that you had a bad experience.

Unhappy with results after Acculift.

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 Regardless, of your age, the Acculift appears to be a Laser procedure that uses a thin fiber to deliver energy to the fatty tisues under the skin.  It's touted as 30 minute Face Lift but IMHO, of performing Face Lifts for over 20 years, this procedure appears to be another method of fatty tissue removal akin to liposuction techniques.  There's no method of SMAS or Platysma muscle tightening nor skin removal which are standard components of typical Face Lifts.  Sadly, this looks like another "marketing gimmick" more than a real Face Lift.  Another example of "buyer beware" in today's aesthetic medical marketplace.

Age alone is not a predictor of how well you will do with facelift surgery

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Your age alone is not a predictor of how well you will do with facelift surgery.  Your surgeon needs to assess your overall health status, smoking history etc.   As to wheterh an "acculift" was the right thing for you, this is impossible to address without evaluating your preopertive anatomy.  Please talk to your surgeon.

The best age for a facelift

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Age has very little to do with whether one can have any form of a facelift or not. The tissues of the face respond satisfactorily to any form of facelifting regardless of age. The problem appears to not be one of age but of a potential mismatch between your facial aging issues and the procedure that was used to treat them. Facelift results are primarily a function of the type of facelift chosen and how well it was executed...not one of age.

Acculift at Age 76

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At 76, you were not too old for an Acculift procedure. As long as a patient is in good health, age has nothing to do with technique selection. I'm sorry you're dissatisfied with your results; discuss this with your surgeon or get a second opinion.

Richard W. Fleming, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

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.