Headache 6 days after facelift. Normal?

I have had a terrible headache ever since my facelift surgery 6 days ago. The pain is across my forehead and on the right temple. The temple I understand because I'd had a facelift 20 years ago and there was quite a bit of scar tissue but the pain across my forehead is constant. My Doctor said he's not sure what's causing it perhaps I should have an MRI or cat scan but I've never been bothered by headaches before. All in all I feel terrible and don't know what to do next.

Doctor Answers 6

Headache 6 days after facelift. Normal? #facelift #headache

Than you for your question! Since this is a relatively uncommon occurance for you, your headache could be due to a number of factors. Post operative anesthesia and medications can cause headaches. The pain medicine, antibiotics, sleeping medication, anything that you do not ordinarily take on a regular basis can have the side effect of headaches. Post operatively after a facelift, there is a significant amount of swelling from the soft tissues that may be causing the headache. As the swelling decreases, hopefully the headache will as well. There are sensory nerves all throughout the face, and body for that matter, and soft tissue swelling may be aggrevating the nerves thus a specific region of pain is experienced. If after a couple more weeks you are still experiencing the headaches and you don't have any contraindications, I would recommend a medrol dose pack that could help relieve swelling thus improve your headaches. I would definitely review this with your plastic surgeon to make sure he or she is on board with this. Hope this helps!!

Bay Area Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 111 reviews

Headache After Facelift Surgery?

I would advise seeing a pain expert at this point. Your symptoms are not very typical after a facelift.

Babak Azizzadeh, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Facelift : Headache - Post Operative Problems

Unfortunately, I can not give you a definitive answer and you must be frustrated. I'm sorry for the rough recovery!

I have seen headaches after face lifts before! These can be a problem for some people.

Causes can be the surgery itself, medicines, migraines, anesthesia, and even complications.

My first concern would be to rule out major medical problems. This might mean a neurology consultation or a Cat Scan.

Have a close examination by your plastic surgeon. Are the incisions ok? How about your ears? Are you eating, drinking, urinating, and having BM's?

If all this is normal than focus on medications. Get off all the meds from surgery and get back to your normal diet.

Caffeine can help with headaches after surgery and can be tried if all else is ok.

Most likely it is not serious. Usually it gradually resolves in my experience.

Be relaxed. Make sure you get checked out by your doctor too.

Hope this helps.

Dr Chris Saunders

Christopher Saunders, MD
Wilmington Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 73 reviews

Dr. Kimberly Henry

I would love to help you in this difficult situation! However, I need a little more information regarding your procedure. Do you know if you had a browlift? Was there any drilling or screws used, because if so, an MRI is necessary to rule out complications that you may have. If you have any additional information, I would be interested to know, and I could assist further. Please feel free to call or email me at drkimberlyhenry.com!! Hope you feel better!

Kimberly A. Henry, MD
Greenbrae Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Headache 6 days after facelift.

Hello! Yes it is normal to have a headache after surgery. It can be due to the anesthesia, medication and even the uncomfortable position that you have to sleep in for the first week. If the headache continues you need to consult with your PS. He may order some tests to see what could be causing it.

Alfonso Gonzalez Cepeda, MD
Mexico Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews


Sometimes blood in the ear canal can cause a headache, seems like everythings else has been checked so maybe have someone take a look

Ryan Neinstein, MD, FRCSC
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 71 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.