I had a facelift two weeks ago and my lips are pulling in a funny way when I talk. They are "out of sync" . Is this temporary?

My lip pulls in a weird way when I speak, I have trouble spitting water out after I brush my teeth, even sucking on a straw is difficult cause my lips don't seem to be working in sync. My lower left lips seems to pull when I speak or try to move it. My appearance when I talk is strange. It's been two weeks since my facelift.i still have a significant amount of swelling. Will this go away?

Doctor Answers 22

After a facelit

It's best to direct this question to your surgeon, but asymmetries after facelift surgery are relatively common and typically resolve on their own. As your swelling improves you'll likely notice improvement in your symmetry as well. 

Swelling can generate abnormal facial expressions shortly after a facelift.

 Swelling particularly near to motor nerves can create some unusual expressions after a facelift. It may take several weeks for these to resolve spontaneously. Note these to your surgeon the next time you visit.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

After facelift

Swellling and possible facial nerve injury can produce the symptoms you describe.  Most of these will improve after several weeks.  Rarely are these permanent issues.  Discuss with your surgeon.  Donald R. Nunn MD  Atlanta Plastic Surgeon.

Donald Nunn, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Marginal mandibular nerve weakness after facelift

It sounds like you may have some weakness of the nerve innervating the muscles of facial expression responsible for oral competence. This nerve is the marginal mandibular branch of the facial nerve. An important question is the timing of onset: was it immediate or delayed after surgery? If it was delayed, chances are that the weakness is temporary and secondary to swelling. In such case, it would likely resolve on its own without any intervention. If it was immediate, i.e. right after surgery in the recovery room already, it could still be temporary if it is due to nerve irritation from the surgical procedure itself. I suggest you contact your surgeon soon and discuss thiswith her or him. Sometimes, oral steroids and other measures help. Good luck!

Thomas J. Walker, MD
Atlanta Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Wierd movements post face

This sounds like you may have some mal functioning facial nerves and since you are a short time post op there is a good chance this will get better with time.Follow up carefully with you surgeon.

Robert Brueck, MD
Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 54 reviews

Facelift asymmetry

Hi and thank you for your question!  Sorry to hear you are experiencing these issues.  Without examining you in person or at least seeing a picture, it is hard to assess the problem.  Sometimes nerves in the face can be stretched during the procedure and this usually will resolve spontaneously.  However, the best person to address your questions and this issue will be your board certified Plastic Surgeon.  You should make an appointment to discuss your concerns.  Good luck.

Andrew Elkwood, MD, FACS
Red Bank Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Recovery after a facelift

Two weeks after a facelift it is not uncommon to experience some temporary visible and some subjective abnormalities.  Typically of this will resolve with time.  Make sure you see your plastic surgeon for follow up evaluation.  Most of the symptoms you are experience are due to temporary muscle weakness, as opposed to direct nerve injury.

Boris M. Ackerman, MD
Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Facelift Nerve Injury

Thank you for your question.

This is probably a result of injury to the marginal mandibular nerve or some times other nerves that may be pulled or stretched during the Facelift procedure. Fortunately most of these injuries are minor and resolve with time. Two weeks is too early to tell but cutting of the nerve is very unusual and I think your problems will resolve over the next few weeks. Please visit your Plastic Surgeon who can asses the problem.

All The Best !

Ajaya Kashyap, MD
India Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 132 reviews

Possible marginal mandibular branch injury following face-lift

Hi there. I'm sorry to hear you are having trouble at this stage. Without photos or video, it is impossible to tell but it sounds as if one of the branches of the facial nerve may have been stretched or injured during surgery - this can result in lower lip asymmetry.  From your description, it is probably a branch on the right side that is actually injured (marginal mandibular branch). It would be advisable to see your PS  who will know exactly what happened at surgery and can fully assess you.

The marginal mandibular branch is the most commonly injured branch in face-lift surgery and in fact most other head and neck surgery. If it has just been stretched during the operation, it will just be a case of watching and waiting - it is still early days and improvement may be seen up to 2 years. If recovery remains unsatisfactory down the line, there are simple measures (eg botox) that can be used to improve the situation. Best consult with a Plastic Surgeon who has a specialist interest in facial nerve injuries. Good luck!

After facelift

It is most likely a temporary problem and should resolve over 4-6 months. There is no way to know without having seen the surgery procedure, so ask this question to your surgeon.

Ronald V. DeMars, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 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.