Ten Days Post Op Line on One Side After Mini Lift with Platysma Muscle Work? (photo)

One side of my face has developed a line on one side (stretch line, looks like a pull). That side of my face had reduced swelling much more than the other side. I've included photos of both sides. Suggestions? Insights?

Doctor Answers 15

Subtle lateral sweep will probably go away

I agree that there is a lateral sweep on your left compared to the right.

However, I have seen this early on in the postoperative period and usually when it is of a minor nature it will go away on its own. Usually the surgeon can see this during surgery, and if it presents itself, it can be redraped and corrected at the time. Most likely, he/she did not see it, and it showed up the first few days. I would hang tight and you will likely see it improve over the next several weeks. It would be unwise to try and revise this before 6-9 months have passed.

Best wishes.

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Swelling after facelift is normal

Swelling after a facelift is normal and may take 6 months to resolve. Massage or some limitied ultrasound treatments will help the swelling dissipate faster.

David Finkle, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Lateral sweep on cheek after mini face lift should resolve

Thank you for your question.  The lines you see on the left side of your face are called a lateral sweep and usually resolves in time with massage.

This occurs when the direction of pull during the lift is too far forward. If it does not resolve it can be corrected with a fairly minor procedure.

Skin fold after face lift

Hello Dindle,

Thank you for the question and the photos.  Although this skin crease or fold is not an ideal part of a face lift result it will get better and most likely resolve on its own.  Gentle massage may help but time alone is perhaps the most important factor.  If it does not fully correct, your plastic surgeon may need to re-drape the skin and soft tissue in that area.

All the best,

Dr. Remus Repta

Remus Repta, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 162 reviews

Ten Days Post Op Line on One Side After Mini Lift with Platysma Muscle Work?

Dear Dindle,

thank you for your question and photo.  Your skin was lifted on the left with more tightness at the bottom than the top creating this 'lateral sweep'. It looks pretty minimal, and usually the skin relaxes enough were this goes away.  You surgeon may suggest massage techniques as well.

Best Wishes,

Pablo Prichard, MD

Pablo Prichard, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

Facelift appearance at 10 days.

At 10 days try to ignore things such as lines etc.  Most will go.  If a line such as this persists, it is a big concern, but it is way too early to worry.   Corrective surgery can be done if necessary.  My Best,  Dr C

George Commons, MD
Palo Alto Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Lateral sweep lines

At ten days out from a facelift there is a lot of swelling.  This wil subside with time. You do have elements of a lateral sweep of the skin being vectored superiorly.  This may or  may not get better with time.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Time will help

I agree with other posts that reassure you that with due time that pulled look will soften in due time. Asymmetric swelling and bruising are common and that two sides will equalize as time progresses. Perhaps the only thing that would have softened that pulled look from the beginning on that side would have been some laser resurfacing. I often perform a laser resurfacing at the time of surgery which really compliments the results of a lift by making the skin look smoother, tighter and all around younger. 


Ravi Dahiya, MD
Washington Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Give it time!

Dear Dindle,

The pulled area that you are showing on your picture can definitely happen early on after a facelift.  The vector of pull on the skin can be obvious the first couple of weeks after surgery especially if there is a lot of deep suture work.  I typically counsel my patients that they may have a "done" look for the first and possibly the second week after surgery as the tissues relax.  Asymmetry is also common in the early healing phase.  You should discuss this with your surgeon but I often will have my patients perform special exercises three weeks after surgery to help break apart some of the tightness and allow for a natural appearance and result.  

Kian Karimi, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 67 reviews

Ten Days Post Op Line on One Side After Mini Lift with Platysma Muscle Work? (photo)

You are correct about the "pull" or "stretch line" as seen in the posted photo. But after ONLY 10 days has not given enough healing time for this to possible resolve. Allow 3 months of healing time than reconsider the issue. Best to discuss with your chosen surgeon. External ultrasound may help. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 173 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.