Had a face and neck lift 6 weeks ago.

I am still numb down sides of face and under my chin all along to my ears. Also still swollen I think or it is a roll of fat but the swollen or fat is numb is this normal ??? Surgeon said that I may need lipo? Can anyone till me why that was not done when I had surgery

Doctor Answers 13

Facelift Revovery and Numbness

It is normal to have numbness in front of the ears, ears, and behind the ears.  If neck work was done, then it is common to have numbers there as well. This is normal and expected with facelift surgery. Some patients describe this as feeling like they have a band around their face and neck. Most people are not bothered by this as they expect it.  Most patients regain sensation within 6 months of the surgery. It is possible for a small group of patients to take longer and even for up to a year and a half after the procedure. Risk of permanent numbness is possible, but extremely rare. 



Boca Raton Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

Facelift

Numbness is very common since a large skin flap is elevated on both sides of the face.  It will take two months to recover full sensation.  If your surgeon went into the neck and excised fat directly, there usually is no need to do liposuction as well.  Best wishes, Dr. T.

Facelift recovery

Numbness is common for a few months but roll of fat is not. However, it is easy to correct. Sometimes during surgery the placement of deep sutures can create a roll that might not become obvious till later. It can be removed through liposuction easily. RegardsDr. J

Tanveer Janjua, MD
Bedminster Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 97 reviews

Face and neck lift

Facial swelling and the elevation of the skin flaps leads to facial numbness which often gets better with time. As for why the neck wasn't suctioned, you need to discuss that with your surgeon.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Swelling and numbness after facelift

Thank you for the question. At 6 weeks post-op, this is likely all normal. Some numbness -- particularly in front of the ears -- occurs in most cases. The swelling is harder to analyze without photos and an operative report. That said, there are things that can be done (e.g., cortisone shots, massage, facial dressings, etc.). If you need lipo and this wasn't discussed as part of your original plan, this is worth bringing up with your surgeon. Best of luck and take care!

Evan Ransom, MD
Bay Area Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 95 reviews

Normal at this point

Everything you describe at this point can be normalfor your recovery. However, swelling and numbness have two different etiologies and resolve at different rates. Numbness can recover much more slowly. As far as the need for liposuction, it's too early to tell what's needed and you should follow with your doctor.

Brian K. Machida, MD, FACS
Ontario Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Facelift numbness and healing

Dear julieden:
Thanks for your question. There are many dynamic changes following surgery including swelling, bruising and the beginning of healing. During a facelift, the sensory nerves are cut to lift the skin and redrape it. This sensation will return incrementally over 1 year and longer.
No other person can tell you what was or was not done at surgery. It is best to return to the surgeon with a list of your questions and address your concerns. 

I encourage you to read the link / blog below to understand the general phases of healing and how to help oneself physically and emotionally during this dynamic process. 

All the best!

Dean P. Kane, MD, FACS
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 70 reviews

Facelift and neck lift evaluating at 6 weeks

Facelift and neck lift recovery does take time for swelling to resolve (at least 6 months) and sensation to return (6-12 months). 
At 6 weeks, you are in the early stages of healing. It would be difficult to make any decisions based on how you look today. Liposuction may be delayed, because your surgeon saw volume loss in your face. A facelift and neck lift may pull some of that volume back up to your face. It's much easier to remove fat later than to replace it. I would recommend asking your surgeon directly. Safety comes first. 

Victor Chung, MD
San Diego Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

6 weeks post

Thank you for your question. Six weeks after facial surgery to judge the results is a little early. I do not know whether you will need liposuction to your jawline as I haven't seen any pictures yet. You may want to give this a little bit more time as you may find that the healing along with jawline improves with time. As a rule, swelling will progress down the face and into the jawline and for approximately 3 to 4 months will collect along the jawline.  If you have any issues please contact a double board certified facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon.

Roberto E. Garcia, MD, FACS
Jacksonville Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Face lift 6 weeks ago - still swollen and numb

Thank you for asking about your face and neck lift.
  • Numbness and swelling are normal 6 weeks after a face and neck lift -
  • Swelling should be beginning to subside at 6 weeks but it will take 6 months to see the final result.
  • Numbness will take 6 - 18 months to fully subside.
  • Because of swelling, you would need to wait six months before deciding there is residual fat.
  • If you had a heavy neck, one would expect the surgeon to remove the excess during the neck lift.
  • Only your surgeon can tell you why this was not done. 
Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Best wishes  - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

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.