Is fat going to return to face and neck if liposuction was performed during facelift?

My face was full of little 2mm marks after facelift. Now my face has been getting more gaunt everyday as the swelling disappears. I'm wondering that maybe the doctor did a liposuction to my face and took fat out. He does not answer to my e-mails.

Doctor Answers 11

Speak with your surgeon

My best advise would be for you to speak with your surgeon and/or get a copy of your operative notes to find out exactly what was done. And if you still aren't happy with your results once all the swelling has subsided and you are completely healed then you may want to consider filler or fat transfer to relieve the "gauntness". Hope this helps.


Kouros Azar

Thousand Oaks Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Healing Concerns Following a Facelift

The 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). 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. 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.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Ask Your Surgeon For Specifics

I'm sorry your experience hasn't been positive. Your first step should be to visit the plastic surgeon's office to learn exactly what was done during your surgery. Once that's taken care of, you'll at least understand more about why your face appears to be getting more gaunt. Communication is an essential part of the relationship between a plastic surgeon and patient, and unfortunately for you, that appears be lacking. I hope you are able to get this resolved.

Thomas McNemar, MD, FACS
Stockton Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Is fat going to return to face and neck if liposuction was performed during facelift?

Sorry to hear of your dissatisfaction with your procedure at this early-stage.  Multiple 2 mm marks on your face suggest to me that liposuction may have been done.  Just today I saw consult who was told by a European plastic surgeon that this was necessary but is not part of my routine and is uncommon in the United States.  Excessive fat removal can lead to a gaunt narrowing and hollowing of the cheeks and face and may need future fat injection or filler injection to correct.  We're of course guessing what was done but having a copy of the operative report and a face-to-face meeting with your plastic surgeon to discuss the issue is of paramount importance.  Removal of fat in the jowls and some time from the cheeks is necessary as a part of a facelift but should not be performed in every patient or to excess.

Jon A. Perlman, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Contour change or fat loss?

I'll assert that you have not given enough information to really answer this question. Certainly, you should return to your physician and discuss the matter with him/her. That being said, a gaunt face can be due to either contour abnormalities (a skin and SMAS lift in a thin person without addressing the mid face or a lack of fat.  I'm unsure how much time has passed since you have had the procedure, but most problems tend to improve with time.  If the problem persists beyond 11months to a year, you can discuss with your surgeon or a facial plastic surgeon specialist in your area, whether liporeinjection to the face and neck or a revision of the surgery is advisable.

Gregory S. Keller, MD, FACS
Santa Barbara Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Guant after facelift

Healing after face lifting surgery is progressive ,and although initial healing is just a couple of weeks,you will notice changes for 12-16 weeks after your procedure. It is not until then, that one can make a judgement as to the cosmetic result and whether "touch-up's" will be required . Call your  surgeons office and make an appointment to be seen in person. This is better than an email .

Michael H. Wojtanowski, MD
Cleveland Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Face gaunt and small marks after face lift

Thank you for asking about your face lift.

  • I am sorry you are concerned.
  • I assume your surgery was done by a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.
  • To find out what was done, just ask for a copy of your surgeon's operative note.
  • Given your concerns, it would be wiser to go in to see your surgeon, instead of talking over the phone.

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

Elizabeth Morgan, MD, PhD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Fat transfer or liposuction after facelift

It is difficult to know whether fat was removed during your surgery. Small incisions may be from liposuction cannula or could be from fat transfer incisions. Your surgeon should be able to give you the necessary information. 

Dan Marsh, PhD, FRCS(Plast)
London Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Ask your doctor

It sounds like the communication between you and your surgeon has been lacking.  As others have stated, there are a few possibilities for the 2mm incisions but I would guess that fat transfer may have happened.  You need to ask your doctor in person if email is ineffective.

Colin Pero, MD
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Liposuction of face

Fat removed from the neck should not come back. However if you gain wait, the residual fat cells my hypertrophy a bit.

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