How is this an acceptable result? (Photo)

5 months after face and necklift ( not mini lift) still have a lot of pain jaw to jaw under chin with limited mobility, tightness, and neck looks worse than before surgery. Ears are also a mess stretched out and stitched to neck. Was told no lipo was done. PS just becomes defensive and condescending

Doctor Answers 11

What to Expect Following Your Facelift

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Your healing process in general can take up to one month for the majority of swelling to subside, incisions to close, sutures to come out, and for bruising to completely go away. #Recovery time from a #facelift varies from person to person, but patients can generally expect to be presentable within three weeks from surgery. Patients should expect swelling, bruising, and discoloration of the skin during this phase of recovery (swelling normally goes down after 48 hours; most bruising will go away within two weeks). When the skin is separated from the underlying tissues during surgery, small sensory #nerves are cut. Varying degrees of numbness will be present after surgery and will improve gradually as the nerves reconnect to the skin. This process can take from 2-6 months for face, neck and cheeks, and to 9-12 months for the forehead and scalp. Muscle weakness may also be present around the mouth especially if liposuction is used. This typically recovers fully in the months after surgery. 

As the nerves regenerate, the itching, burning, tingling and shooting #sensations will occur. Ice, moisturizers and gentle #massaging are helpful during this phase of the #healing process. Frequently there is a tight feeling in the neck, jawline and cheek after a facelift. During surgery, not only the skin but the underlying muscles are tightened to create a better and longer lasting result. Additionally, the #swelling will move downward in the first week and the neck will feel even tighter. Do not be alarmed: the sensation will decrease during the first month. 

Some degree of firmness or lumpiness under the skin is normal after surgery and will resolve with time. Local #massage of the areas may accelerate the resolution of this problem, which normally takes 2-4 months to disappear completely.
The marks from a facelift can easily hidden with “camouflage” make-up which you can learn how to apply. The scars from a facelift mature within six to twelve months from the surgery date. It is during this time that the rejuvenating effects of the facelift will become apparent and the real result will be seen. If you have certain concerns about the procedures and #healing process, it is recommended to call your board-certified surgeon or their medical staff and discuss those #concerns.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Unhappy facelift results

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I am really sorry to hear that your facelift has not delivered the results that you were wanting. The tightness and ear issues are not uncommon following a facelift so I don't think there's any need to be concerned. Your body is still healing. Give things another month and if you still don't like what you see, schedule an appointment to discuss with your surgeon or get a second opinion from another board certified plastic surgeon in your area. 


Kouros Azar

Kouros Azar, MD
Thousand Oaks Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

So far so good

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So most patients feel there neck is under corrected so there is actually something to be glad about. 

The tightness will definitely settle over time as the skin relaxes. The pinned down ears are a common side effect from facelift surgery. They may need a small revision operation under local anaesthetic but tell your surgeon your concerns and I am sure they will be happy to help you. 

Hope that helps. 

Adam Goodwin

Facelift Result

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I'm sorry you didn't have a good experience with your facelift.  From the vertical striations/pleating in your neck it does appear that you had liposuction.  It also seems the skin has some darkening which is usually a reaction to bruising called "postinflammatory hyperpigmentation".    Stretched out ears are called "pixie ear" and come from too much tension on closure of the facelift incisions around the ears.  All of these conditions can be improved with treatment ranging from revision facelift, to laser, to topical therapies.  

James C. Marotta, MD
Long Island Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 126 reviews

Unhappy with facelift results.

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It sounds like your facelift experience and results were not what you wished.  I can't give a meaningful comment on your concerns without knowing what you looked like before your surgery, knowing what was done during your surgery and getting standardized photos for comparison.  If your surgeon is not responding to your concerns, you may wish to see another board certified plastic surgeon and express what you would like to achieve.  Good luck.

Problems after facelift

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So sorry to hear about your problems. I highly recommend you honestly speak with your surgeon and let them know your specific concerns. If you don't get anywhere, or the surgeon denies that there is a problem, seek a second opinion with a facelift specialist.

Andrew Campbell, M.D.

Facial Rejuvenation Specialist

Quintessa Aesthetic Centers

Andrew Campbell, MD
Milwaukee Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 25 reviews


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Thank you for your question and I am sorry to hear about your concerns regarding your facelift and necklift results thus far.  Without a physical exam and proper pre- and post-op photographs it is difficult to comment on your cosmetic results.  While I can appreciate that your experience with your plastic surgeon has been less than ideal, I would strongly recommend following up with your operating surgeon to discuss your concerns, your results, your recovery, and any recommendations your surgeon may have for you now that you are 5 months post-op.  

Facelift issue

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Sorry for your concern.  It would be helpful to see pre and post photos and the areas in question. Better yet, an in-office exam would be essential. Best of luck.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Unhappy with face and neck lift result

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Thank you for asking about your face and neck lift result.

  • Without seeing standard before and after photos, one can't comment on your result.
  • It is also important to know more about one's medical condition and habits - for instance smoking, etc.
  • I am sorry you feel treated so poorly by your plastic surgeon -
  • The ear situation can probably be easily corrected with a minor office procedure.
  • Some women do heal very slowly after face and neck lifts for reasons that aren't always clear.
  • I have had this surgery and it took me 18 months exactly to feel normal again.
  • A hand held massager can be helpful.
  • If you feel you cannot work with your surgeon, you might consider getting copies of your operative report and before photos and get a second opinion.

Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Best wishes  - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Appearance 5 months after face/neck lift

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It is difficult to give you advice without seeing more pictures of you, both before and after your face/neck lift 5 months ago.  Pictures of your face and neck from the front as well as from the sides before and after your procedure would be very helpful.  

Michael I. Echavez, MD
San Francisco Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 18 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.