I had a face lift eight months ago. My Submandibular Gland on the left side has a hard stationary knot?

I had a face lift eight months ago. My Submandibular Gland on the left side has a hard stationary knot. I ask my plastic surgeon about it and he said it was my gland. My concern is, the other side does not feel as prominent. I saw my ENT and he recommended a CT scan. Do you think that is warranted, or maybe this ENT is not familiar with what happens to those glands, after a necklift?

Doctor Answers 10

Healing Concerns Following a Facelift

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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.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Swelling after Facelift

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The submandibular glands are nestled up underneath the middle of the jaw bone. As we age they tend to drop. Hardness in one is definitely worthy of a ct scan.

Brian Maloney, MD, FACS
Atlanta Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Face lift - hard knot in submandibular gland 8 months after face lift.

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Thank you for asking about your face lift.

  • If the knot in the sub-mandibular gland appeared after your face lift, it may be inflamed 
  • This is likely if your plastic surgeon operated on the gland which is occassaionly done during a face lift.
  • However your ENT is correct - you do need a CT scan to be sure there isn't something else causing this.

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

CT Scan for Knot in Submandibular Gland

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At 8 months post op, you should be fully healed so yes, I would have this knot checked out. It could be due to your facelift or something else, but a CT scan will give everyone involved an accurate idea of what's actually going on. 


Kouros Azar

Kouros Azar, MD
Thousand Oaks Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Knot in neck after Face/Necklift

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Thanks for the question.  The prominence of your submandibular glands can vary from one side to the other.  This is often masked before a facelift especially if you have a very full neck.  The knot located on one side could be: scar related to the procedure, fat necrosis related to the procedure or neck liposuction done at the time of your procedure, a retained non-absorbable suture used for the neck lift, or an issue with your submandibular gland.  I would recommend an ultrasound of your neck first to avoid the radiation exposure of a CT scan, and then if there are still any concerns proceed with the CT scan.  Chances are this is a benign issue other than a submandibular gland issue.

Neck lump 8 months after facelift

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Thank you for the question. First, at 8 months post-op, most of the healing and swelling should be done. The lump in the gland could be related to scar tissue, depending on the approach used. It could also be a salivary stone or a growth in the gland or a nearby lymph node. A CT scan would be fine, but you could also start with a simple ultrasound. If this looks suspicious, a CT and/or a needle biopsy can be performed. Best of luck!

Enlarged submandibular gland after facelift surgery

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The knot may be related to your facelift surgery or it may actually be a process going on in your gland itself. I agree with your ENT assessment and would get a CT scan to better assess that area.

Scott Trimas, MD
Jacksonville Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Submandibular Gland "knot" following facelift

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Dear Carlaemmons1:

All surgical procedures including face and neck lift produce scar or collagen as a healing by-product to adhere the tissues together and provide stability and tightening of the surgical features. 

There are many possibilities of this "knot" in your submandibular gland. Most are benign and may simply be associated with the repositioning of the neck tissues, scar, swelling of the gland, etc. 

In the unlikely event this is of concern, please re-visit your facelift surgeon for recommendations. Yes, your ENT's recommendations of a CT scan or needle aspiration biopsy may be warranted to make a proper diagnosis.  

I wish you well!

Dean P. Kane, MD, FACS
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 103 reviews

Hard gland post facelift

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Since this is still there 8 months post op one always has to consider a growth in the submnadibular gland and getting a CAT scan would help to resolve the issue.If the mass is gettnig smaller you could wait.

Robert Brueck, MD
Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Sutures can sometimes be felt in the neck

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So often I will place sutures close to and along the submandibular glands so that the neck can become more tightened and to improve the neck contour to a more youthful appearance.  Sutures can be felt in this area on occasion.  When I examine the neck and face after a facelift,  it is generally very easy to determine if any bumps or hardness is due to a suture or due to some other cause such as a submandibular salivary gland growth.  The likelihood is that your facelift surgeon is correct that the bump is just a suture or a healing issue.  But the only way to be certain is to go with a full evaluation via radiographic evaluation.  You could opt for a more limited study such as an ultrasound.

David Q. Santos, MD
Bellevue Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 23 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.