Visible suture from ear to chin. What should I do?

My surgeon agreed that he needed to do a revision of a neck/lower face lift 8 months out. I woke up, he came in and said that I shouldn't worry about a dark blue line on the right, that is where he went through to pull up the skin. Three months later there is a raised hard ridge. Now he says that is a suture and my skin is too thin. (wasn't the first time..and isnt on the other side) . He said it will relax some in time, but it will not desolve. I don't believe he is being honest. What should I do?

Doctor Answers 16

What to do about visible suture

Easiest thing to do would be to go seek a second or third opinion regarding this dark blue line. It is likely some form of long lasting/permanent suture that was placed that now formed in with some scar tissue(raised ridge). Your skin could be "too thin" for the type of technique your surgeon performed and seeking a second or even third opinion would hopefully address your issue. Sutures(even permanent ones) do typically relax with time,  plastic surgeons are always fighting gravity.

Visible Suture after Revision Facelift

This visible suture could be one of a variety of 'barbed sutures' that are used to give a mild lift to the facial skin.  It could also be a permanent suture, likely prolene, used to elevate the SMAS tissue along the jowl area.  In patients with thin skin extra care needs to be taken to avoid contour irregularities under the skin and visible or permanent dyed sutures close to the skin.

Jill Hessler, MD
Palo Alto Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Ear to chin suture?

I agree with Dr. Pearlman.  It sounds like some adaptation of a countour barbed suture.  I do not feel that this is an appropriate method to resuspend the tissue of the face.  Please seek out a facial plastic or plastic surgeon in your area to discuss.

Raghu Athre, MD
Houston Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

Seek a second opinion

  • It sounds like your surgeon used a barbed suspension suture to lift the face. I don't have experience with the sutures because I've read about technical problems with the technique. I would seek the opinion of another surgeon, preferably someone who's a board certified plastic surgeon. It sounds like the suture will need to come out because it's too close to the skin

Joseph M. Perlman, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Post op line

If you have concerns you should seek advice from another board certified plasti surgeon in your area. Your surgeon will welcome the added input.

Best of Luck

Dr. Jabs

What should I do?

If you are doubting your surgeon, have a talk with him about your worries.   If you are still worried, I advise having a consultation with another experienced surgeon.   The best answer to your questions will come from a surgeon examining you and reviewing your history.  Many surgeons have different ways of handling things, so it helps to have a different perspective.  

George Orloff, MD, FACS
Burbank Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Visible suture after facelift, 8 months post op.

Difficult to say much without photos.  Did the surgeon indicate the type of suture he used?  Did he indicate a plan if things did not get better?  If you elect to see another surgeon, I suggest he/she is experienced in facelift surgery and is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery or Otolaryngology, (ENT).  Together you should be able to make a plan.

Jeffrey J. Roth, MD, FACS
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

# facelifting micro fat grafting , #facial contouring #fattransfer #beauty #complications

Dear Drmdancer

Thank you for your question!  Your surgeon said that the suture will not dissolve.  It is creating the hard ridge that you are seeing?  It is early after your surgery- some massage may help soften the area- and perhaps the suture needs to be adjusted or removed.  Your surgeon is the best one to address this- otherwise seek a second in person consultation.

With Warm Regards

Trevor M Born MD

Trevor M. Born, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 107 reviews

Suture After Facelift

It is highly unlikely that the suture will dissolve.   The information you have shared is unusual. Consult with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon who is highly experienced for a second opinion.  

Robert E. Zaworski, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 55 reviews

Suture after facelift

Agreed with all these answers that the suture will most likely not dissolve at this time. Its important to seek out a facial plastic surgeon specializing in facelift. Did your current surgeon offer to remove the stitch? Also, ask what type of suture material did they use. That will be important to know as well for your second opinion. Hope this helps! Dr. Miguel

George S. Miguel, DO
Troy Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 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.