I am just short of 3 months post SMAS facelift. I had an incision under my chin and around my ears. So far, healing seems to be going well; however, I now have tightness when I lift my head to look up at things AND I can see my platysma muscles (like vertical bands) when I stretch my neck back. Is this a normal part of the healing process? Will it resolve in time? If not, what can be done to correct this?
Platysmal Banding After SMAS Facelift, Is This Normal?
Doctor Answers 9
Tightness and Platysmal Banding after SMAS Face Lift
The tightness that you are experiencing in your neck should continue to resolve with time. You may want to add some massage of the area to accelerate it loosening up. It is difficult to assess the platysmal bands without a picture. Later options may include some Botox versus re-entering the neck and dividing the platysma low in the neck and bringing it together in the midline.
Platysmal bands after a facelift
I would allow full healing, then seriously consider how much ground you've gained from where you started, and if a major revision is warranted to go after the bands. If so, visit an experienced neck lift surgeon.
Rate of platysmal bands after facelift
Platysmal bands can recur at a high rate after a facelift despite performing a platysmaplasty (sewing of the bands together). Unfortunately, this is the nature of this type of operation.
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SMAS really has nothing to do with platysma banding after facelift.
The SMAS ends at the jawline so doesn't really have much to do with platysma banding repair. The platysma and the SMAS comingle at the jaw but have no relationship down the middle of the neck. Surgical correction of the muscle eliminates or reduces the visible bands.
Platysma Neck Bands
Tightness and bands especially when you tilt your head back are common after SMAS facelifts. A platysmaplasty (sewing the bands together) eliminated the bands post operatively but you would still complain of tightness. This should go away in the ensuing weeks ahead.
If for any reason the vertical plasysma neck bands are still tight you can consider a platysmaplasty.
Platysmal bands after Facelift
The "Bands" Play On
Usually if the neck is part of the treatment plan and platysmal bands are identified then correction should be accounted for during the facelift. A common strategy would be to sew the edges of the bands together and partially divide the bands horizontally to allow for better neck contour. I would discuss your concerns with your PS to see the strategies available for you.
Platysma Banding after SMAS Facelift
Tightness of the neck can persist for several months after a SMAS lift because of stiffness in the platysma muscle. This will resolve. I cannot comment on the appearance of vertical bands without a picture. You can send pictures or just ask your surgeon.
Playsmal Tightness after Face and Neck Lift
Usually, the platysmal tightness subsides with time. Tissues always relax in the face and neck lift even if permanent sutures are used. Massage will help along with tincture of time, but your plastic surgeon will be your best source of information for this as he or she knows how the techniques employed affect recovery in his or her patients. Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA