Do I have nerve damage or am I experiencing normal healing?

Had deep plane facelift and necklift a few months ago. Skin at the jaw area particularly on one side is really tender to the touch with l limited movement on that side when trying to move my neck both up and down and sideways. Also lower lip on that side seems to be uneven when I smile to that of other side of mouth. Also had small hematoma lower cheek on that side which still has some discoloration. Ear to ear under is jaw is also very tender to touch and still very lumpy.

Doctor Answers 8

Deep plane face lift - is this normal healing?

Thank you for asking about your face lift.
  • Face lift recovery can be quite difficult.
  • The lower lip unevenness may be from nerve damage - if it is improving it is recovering.
  • The discoloration should resolve.
  • The lumpiness along the jaw should improve.
  • The tenderness are unusual - again if they are slowly improving, they should continue doing so.
  • You should see your surgeon to discuss these concerns and be followed until all have resolved.
Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Best wishes  - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Do I have nerve damage or is this normal healing after a deep plane facelift?

What you are experiencing with the right side of your face a few months post-operatively is not typical after any type of facelift. However at this point in time all advise and/or recommendations should come only come from your own surgeon. Continue with your follow up visits.

Jeffrey K. Scott, MD
Sarasota Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 54 reviews

Facelift healing

You should be evaluated in person by your surgeon to review all your concerns about your recent facelift. Best of luck.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Recovery after facelift

I'm sorry its not going as smooth as you had hoped, these concerns should be addressed with your surgeon.  That being said, face/neck lift can be a big procedure with extensive dissection, the more bruising, the more swelling and longer it takes to heal...and yes, both sides sometimes don't heal at the same rate.  Despite these experiences, with a little more time and guidance from your surgeon, things should only get better.Best of luck

Michael J. Rodriguez, MD, FAACS
Plantation Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Healing after facelift

You should sit down with your surgeon to discuss your outcome.  It takes weeks to totally heal from this surgery, but the concerns you listed should be addressed.

Robert E. Zaworski, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 60 reviews

Post op healing

Although it can take quite a bit of time to fully recover from a facelift and every patient heals at his or her own rate, what you are describing doesn't sound normal. Since I always think it best to err on the side of caution, I would suggest that you schedule an appointment to see your surgeon and be assessed in person.


Kouros Azar

Kouros Azar, MD
Thousand Oaks Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 33 reviews


The uneven smile may suggest a nerve injury.  More than likely a neurpraxia which means the nerve was stretched but not severed.  This type of injury usually resolves completely but it may take 3 months.  Photos would better help assess your progress.  Best wishes, Dr. T. 

John Michael Thomassen, MD
Fort Lauderdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Healing after facelift

You list several concerns you have while healing from facelift surgery. As you continue to heal in the one year postoperative period, changes and improvements of these concerns should occur. You need to discuss the healing process with your surgeon so you will know what to ultimately expect.

Thomas Romo, III, MD, FACS
Manhattan Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 55 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.