What is the Minimum Number of Face and Brow Lifts a Doctor Should Have Performed?

I am ready to have a facelift and brow lift but MUST have absolute confidence in the surgeon. I've done my homework by reading books, etc. But what is the MINIMUM number of face lifts and brow lifts an ABPS certified surgeon should have performed and, should the surgeon have an ample number of before and after pictures. I am suspcious when a doctor says he does 2-3 lifts per month for 20 years but only has five pictures of facelifts but 200 photos of breast lifts.Im 65.

Doctor Answers 21

Minimum Number of Face and Brow Lifts

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You are correct to expect a level of experience and specialization in facial surgery.  There is no magic number that makes one an expert but ideally the surgeon should do 1-2 face lifts/week and have been in practice for 10+ years.

Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 229 reviews

How many facelifts must a surgeon have done before I trust him

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This is the best question I have answered in months. I can't believe no other surgeon tackled it. There is a saying "jack of all trades master of none" We as  indiviual surgeons don't do every operation well nor do we like dealing with certain types of patients to comfort and enthuse them for their upcoming surgery. We have confidence levels and our websites speak volumes. Breast and body guys don't do good facelifts and noses. I am the director of an aesthetic fellowship and I can tell who will be the facial surgeon and who has the body preference.Webstes speak volumes. Realself is unique it tells you what doctors do well and which questions with which surgery they feel comfortable with. You see a doctor answering facelift questions and sending pictures he is your man

Richard Ellenbogen, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

A quality face lift outweighs cranking out 2-3 per week with a high number of complications and bad results

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There is not a precise minimum number, but you do want to go to someone with good training, board-certified plastic surgeon, and some years of experience under their belt. Certainly I would hesitate on anyone who has done less than 50-100 facelifts.

Of note, the reason that many plastic surgeons have more breast pictures than facelift pictures is because the face identifies the patient.  It is easy to get patients to consent to before and after pictures for breast and body, but many patients do not want their face all over the web site and internet.

Also, take into consideration quality no quantity.

I hope this helps.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 214 reviews

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Confidence in your surgeon

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I find this an odd question.  Although I understand your concern, let me tell you as an insider that there are a lot of different types of experience.  Just because someone can say they have done a lot of something does not mean they can produce results.   I don’t think there is a minimum number. What if someone has a lot of experience but they just aren’t that great. That would be a lot of experience, but bad experience. What if a doctor is naturally talented and had great training but does not have a lot of experience. The later surgeon may do an amazing facelift but have very little experience (i.e. the have not done a lot of surgery). Get to know your surgeon. Look at pre and post photos carefully. See if you can speak to former patients. Trust your gut. The busy guy might not be the best guy, they might just be the person who advertises the most or who has been around the longest. You might consider choosing someone who has completed an advanced cosmetic surgery fellowship.  That is extra cosmetic surgery training after their residency.


Adam Bryce Weinfeld, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

How many Face Lifts are enough?

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I say 100!!!! Why may you ask? Well I feel if a surgeon fully enjoys a particular procedure than they will have had a period of time to perfect  that particular procedure. A face lift is a technically challenging procedure. It takes many procedures and many years to perfect this craft. I see the younger surgeons in my town advertising on TV and Radio, They do infomercials and look the part. The best people to get info from are the happy patients, and the nurses. If the OR nurses are allowing their faces to be done by a particular surgeon, they have been vetted by the pickiest group of all. Face lifts can have NO mistakes.

Charles Virden, MD
Reno Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 70 reviews

Sounds like you found a good breast lift surgeon.

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The dirty secret out there is that general plastic surgeons from excellent plastic surgery residencies may have only been the primary surgeon on one or two facelifts or forehead lifts.  They will generally argue that the additional experience with assisting together with the breadth of their general plastic surgery training more than makes up for the deficiency in the actual number of cases performed at the start of the career.  I think for some surgeons this may very will be true.  However, there really is no substitute for experience.  A surgeon who is actually doing 2-3 lifts per month should have tons of before and after photos to share so it does raise a concern.  It is appropriate to consult additional surgeons.

Kenneth D. Steinsapir, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Think facial rejuvination rather than a specific technique

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Facial rejuvingation seems to be what your are looking for.

This should be done by someone who uses an eclectic approach customized to you.

He/she should have the ability to do a variety of brow lifts as well as styles of face/neck  lifts so the technique can be customized to you

I have a largely facial rejuvination practice and may not repeat the same style of facial rejuvination within the month.

Dr. Mayl

Fort Lauderdale

Nathan Mayl, MD (retired)
Fort Lauderdale Plastic Surgeon

Number of face lifts/browlifts a surgeon should have done.

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You are absolutely correct to question a surgeon who only has few facelift photos.

For 35 years we have let our patients meet with prospective patients to see the quality of our work. Surgeons who are busy have many live patients to meet with to see real work not photoshopped pictures.

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

How many facelifts are enough?

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There is no specific answer to this question.  Years of doing the wrong this is not as good as less time doing the right thing.  Most of the time, at least 10 years after residency with a busy practice and great photos is key.  The rest is all up to your gut instinct.

Facelift: doctor credentials

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#Facelift: doctor credentials

Facelift: choosing your #plasticsurgeon
Experience matters.  According to #ASPS, the average surgeon only does about 25 facelifts each year.   We currently do 150-200 which amounts to thousands during the last decade.  
Surgeons can be qualified for a variety of reasons, but you can help select one with the following info:
  • Board Certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgeons
  • not ..... Board of Cosmetic surgeons
  • member of ASAPS
  • years of experience
  • referral from a friend who is happy

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