Will I Need a Revision Facelift and when Can It Be Done? (photo)

I am 6 weeks postop and extrememly disappointed with the results of my facelift. I had a lot of swelling appear a week postop but now most of the swelling and fluid have subsided and I am left with close to the same issue I had prior to surgery. Very lax skin under under my chin. One side of my face looks pretty good while the left side is horrible. My PS said that once all the swelling and fluid was gone the skin should shrink up. I am 53 years old with not a lot of elasicity in my skin.

Doctor Answers 21

Facelift revision

Although you are only 6 wwekks out, I am not optimistic that the skin ecxess under your chin will contract and smooth out without surgical intervention. In my opinion, you weill need a redraping of the neck skin laterally, behind the ears. Correction of this much skin excess through a midline approach may leave an unacceptable vertical scar. I'm not certain if a true neck lift was also performed with the lower face lift or the the surgeon attempted to correct the excess neck skin through a facelift only. I believe its important to follow with your surgeon and discuss your concerns. In my experience, this extent of residual skin excess does not retract spontaneously.


Cambridge Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Definitely go back

It is common after surgery to have some swelling and bruising to the face and generally it takes around 3 months for this to subside and the final results to be seen. However looking at your photo's it is very unusual be left with such loose skin so soon after surgery. In fact, patients feel tighter after surgery especially when they have swelling on board. By 6 weeks the swelling would have subsided and the skin would have relaxed from being very tight. It is unlikely that the skin in your photo's is going to shrink back and it may suggest that not enough tightening was done in the first instance and your surgeon was very conservative.

Most surgeons would wait 3 months before being able to assess your face fully but revision surgery can certainly be performed at this stage to tighten the skin and make you look symmetrical.

You should discuss your concerns with your PS and a good one would be able to accommodate you and help you reach you desired goal.

All the best and hope it works out. You can see some before an after photo's on our website for great results on face lifts

When to have a facelift revision

Swelling after a facelift can take weeks to resolve.  The swelling that others can see usually resolves in 2-3 weeks but swelling that you see or feel will take several weeks.  Based on the photos however I believe some of the skin will still contract but I don't think all of it will.  At 4-6 months, if the results are significantly better, talk to your plastic surgeon about a revision at the 12 month mark.

Mike Majmundar, MD
Atlanta Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Revision face lift

Many factors must be considered before your deciding on a revision faceliftl 
6 weeks is clearly to early since  reduced swelling and skin contraction is to be expected over the next 3-4 months. Those patients with poorly elastic skin can expect  some stretch relaxation postoperatively and the design of the incision may minimize skin redundancy in the lower neck. A frank discussion with the patient  preoperatively mentioning the possible need for a touch up revision will often allay disappointments in the early postoperative  period. Patience is important for both you and the plastic surgeon.

Michael Eisemann M.D.
Plastic Surgeon

6 weeks post op and not happy after a face lift

I see all the skin in your neck. That would be pretty hard to see that get taken up with some extra healing. Usually you should have pretty tight neck around 6 weeks time and it will only get more loose with time. You might need a revision. If there is fluid in there I would suck it out and apply more pressure dressings but I think it looks like extra skin. Don't worry though this can be changed for you.

Philip Young, MD
Bellevue Facial Plastic Surgeon
3.9 out of 5 stars 64 reviews

Facelift - Will I Need a Revision Facelift and when Can It Be Done?

It's hard to say from the photos alone and, of course, each result can reasonably only be judged when compared with the pre-op appearance.  That being said, if there is still skin remaining after your surgery (as appears to be the case) you may well benefit from a revision.  The timing depends on exactly what was done.  Did the surgeon lift up the skin all the way across the neck?  Was it a SMAS only?  These are questions that need to be answered before deciding to intervene again.  Even then, there are few absolutes in terms of timing and what needs to be done, but that's where you'll need to start.

I hope that this helps and good luck,

Dr. E

Early laxity after a facelift

Submental fullness is not unusual after a facelift depending on the technique used.  However, if there is significant skin excess, it is likely that this will need to be addressed with some technique, likely revision tuck up or skin contracture technique.

Anil R. Shah, MD
Chicago Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 143 reviews

Will I Need a Revision Facelift and when Can It Be Done?

Yes you are a good candidate for facelift If your skin sagging is so severe that cannot be fixed with non-surgical approaches, if you want to have an immediate result and you don’t want to wait for months to see the results; then you might be a good candidate for a face lifting operation. There are several techniques for face lifting operations the ones with minimal retractions and the ones that with a more aggressive approaches. You can decide the best technique that will work for you in the consultation with your doctor.

Bulent Cihantimur, MD
Turkey Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 79 reviews

Early Post Op

I started to answer this question without noting the date it was posted but as I realize this comment is over four years old, please give an update on your outcome. 

Asymmetry & Recovery After a Facelift

#Asymmetric #swelling is not uncommon following surgical procedures, including a #facelift. Do not be alarmed if one side of your face is slightly more swollen or numb than the other. This is common and usually disappears within a few weeks.
Its best to remain patient because it is still early in to your recovery. 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). 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.
Nevertheless, 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 96 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.