Neck Lift - 8 Weeks Post Op - Still Have Thick Tissue Under Chin

I am 8 weeks post op after having a neck lift with platysmaplasty. I had a lot of fluid build up in the center of my neck after surgery and the doctor shot steroids into it twice. I still have a lot of thick tissue under my jawline. It is especially apparent when I look upwards. I have been massaging it but it doesn't seem to get better. I'm concerned because everything I read from the doctors seems to suggest that healing is complete after 2-4 weeks. Can this thickening be permanent?

Doctor Answers 7

Neck lift 8 weeks old

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I assume that the thickness you are complaining about is from the chin incision . This swelling and thickness will take several months to improve.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Thick tissue under the chin; 8 weeks p-op

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: Underneath the chin is probably the most challenging area to resolve problems with neck lift or facelift type surgery. Essentially in most instances liposculpture is required, as well as some form of tightening, tightening to the platysmal bands and deeper fascial muscle tissue. Many times incisions in the submental area are required to address this somewhat delicate area. In many instances the area can be quite satisfactory in the early postoperative period, but there are a high percentage of instances where fullness and firmness in this area is present a month and even two months postoperative. I think of three months as a reasonable time period postoperative to assess the result in this area, although sometimes even longer time frames such as six months or a year are required. Treatment modalities to this area include on occasion steroid injections, as well as bandage application for firm pressure on the area to assist with the healing. But nonetheless, two months is not unusual to still have fullness in this area. Revision true procedures to this region range from 1% to 10% in frequency, but the decision for additional procedure should be addressed no sooner than the six month mark. Nonetheless at two months further patience is required.

David Q. Santos, MD
Bellevue Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Swelling after a neck lift

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Swelling under the neck after neck lift is very common.  Gravity usually brings all the tissue fluid down to the lowest point.  I suggest that you frequently massage the area and let time take its course.  I usually tell my patients that it takes at least 6 months for the swelling to resolve.

Bruce E. Genter, MD, FACS
Abington Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Necklift healing may take time

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It is absolutely normal to have some swelling and firmness after a necklift and platysmaplasty.  Although many patients may be "healed" in 2-4 weeks, the healing process actually takes about a year!  Some patients may appear to heal a bit slower depending upon what was actually done, the amount of liposuction, the extent of bruising, the degree of swelling, etc.  Steroid injections will hasten the process, but your real friend is time.  Be patient and discuss your concerns with your doctor.

Randy J. Buckspan, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Firmness after neck lift

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Some induration and firmness is quite  common after neck surgery. Please consult with your surgeon to rule out seroma (fluid collection), blood collection, infection and other reversible causes. Good Luck

Ali Sajjadian, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 205 reviews

Firmness after surgery in the neck

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Induration or firmness of the soft tissue and dermis under the epidermis is normal after many surgeries. As long as your surgeon evaluayes it and determines it's not a hematoma (collection of blood) or ab scess then the firmness is expected to resolve but it can take a few more months witj massage and sometimes, if your doctor approves, warm soaks.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Firm scar tissue after neck lift

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It is unlikely that the thickening is permanent. Some irregularities may persist. However, given the timing of your fluid collection, it is not at all unusual that you have thickening at this point in time. Give it at least another 6 weeks and continue massage if permitted by your surgeon.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 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.