How Do I Know That my Lumps and Bumps (3.5 Weeks Post Op of a Facelift) Are Normal and Not Fat Necrosis?

Had a SMAS lift and ended up with some skin necrosis. Got it under control, but now I'm worried that MY lumps and bumps may be fat necrosis vs the usual lumps and bumps. Is it more likely when one has necrosis of the skin? Is there any way to tell? I'm still looking swollen, asymmetrical, had issues with healing, and had skin necrosis I treated with HBOT. I am not happy with my resuts, as I don't look 'natural' or refreshed... but instead, I think I look 'worked on'

Doctor Answers 3

Lumps and bumps at 3.5 wks after facelift

At 3.5 wks after a facelift, it is too early to see the final results of the facelift. Give it a few months to settle down. Good luck.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Facelift problems

Hello Ittybit- (Photographs would greatly help us help you more) I hope your lumps and bumps are 'ittybitty' ones, but the unnatural draping of your skin that you mention may not be a small thing to you. In general, a facelift with a good second layer (SMAS) lift will not need the skin dissected as much and therefore one should have fewer risks of lumps, bumps, fat necrosis or skin necrosis. A more natural result also tends to result when a good SMAS flap is elevated as the tension can be placed on this layer and the skin flap just re-draped in natural way. Most lumps and bumps should be able to be massaged away with time, so continue to be patient and work on them with pressure and even a mechanical massager/vibrator. Keep following what your surgeon recommends, but don't hesitate to get a second opinion with time. Best of luck to you.

Mark Anton, MD, FACS
Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Facelift complications

Without photos, it is difficult to comment on your complex situation. The SMAS generally has a robust blood supply, even when the skin flaps don't. Fat necrosis in the face is quite rare compared to other areas of the body. You are very early into the post-operative period and the tissues are still definitely re-modeling at this point. I wouldn't judge any contouring issues unless they were persistent and unchanged through three months.

Patti A. Flint, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 54 reviews

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