Rope Like Cord Around Neck After Lower Facelift, Will It Go Away? (photo)

When drains were pulled side of neck ballooned up. Other swelling reduced, but distinct cords not dissipating. Doc drained a little out at day 2, no improvement since. Not concerned about tightness/swelling just 8 days post-op but worry tissues may not normalize. When the nurse pulled the drains she might as well have yanked them out. Should be slight pressure against the drain as it is pulled? I feel as if a pocket was created when she pulled the drains. Using cool/warm compresses/band.

Doctor Answers 7

Drains: Don't Worry, This Will Resolve

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When a drain is removed after a facelift, a potential space remains.  This area sometimes fills with a small amount of blood, representing a localized hematoma.  Regardless, this finding is likely to resolve over the next few weeks.  Sometimes needle aspiration is required, sometimes not.

Fort Myers Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 104 reviews

Facelift swelling

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good afternoon!


it does appear that you may have a localized hematoma in your neck.  if it has been 8 days, the blood has coagulated into a mass that is difficult to aspirate, it is a solid.  In another couple of days it will return to a liquid state where is can be removed with a needle puncture.

It may take more than one session to treat this thankfully rare occurrence after a necklift surgery.

I hope this helps

Robert Steely, MD, FACS
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

Early Facelift Concerns

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Thank you for sharing your concerns and pictures. The use of drains when performing a facelift/necklift/lower facelift is common, although not universal. When used, the drains usually leave a minimally elevated tract from the drain tip to where they exit the skin. Following removal, this elevation remains anywhere from a day to a couple weeks, but it usually subsides without further intervention.  If fluid is present, it may lead to slower resolution due to increased inflammation at the site of the drains. However, if fullness persist, adjuvant treatments of local steroid injections and/or message can be helpful. It is most prudent to discuss this with your surgeon and initiate further interventions only when he feels it is appropriate. Take care.

Robert Brobst, MD
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Problems after facelift

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there can be many reasons..  if there is no fluid collection then  masage,,  and time and possible injections with 5fu and or kenalog  can be helpful...  ask your doctor.


Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews


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You seem to have a hematoma of the neck though localized, Will need treatment. I tebd to reopen the incision and clean the hematoma So as not to have scarring and skin dimpling.

Samir Shureih, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon

Fluid in neck

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It looks like from your photos that it is possibly fluid and swelling that are contributing to your appearance. Best to see your surgeon.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Face lift swelling

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I take swelling such as yours seriously after a face lift.

I suggest you see your plastic surgeon.

It looks as though you have fluid on both sides.

A needle aspiration will determine if this is the case.

I remove all fluid as often as needed until it stops forming.

Otherwise the swelling can become hard and take a long time to subside.

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.