it is a week post operative after my face lift, I'm having waves of pain in my right ear, is this part of the healing process?

Doctor Answers 9

It is a week post operative after my face lift, I'm having waves of pain in my right ear, is this part of the healing process?

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It is not unusual to experience some minor discomfort and swelling in the early post operative course.  I would recommend you see your surgeon to rule out any infection.

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 61 reviews

Pain in the ear after facelift surgery

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Hello and thank you for your question.

It would of course be advisable for you to get checked out by your surgeon but it is not unusual to feel some pain in the ear after face lift surgery at this stage. It can be due to a number of factors, sometimes from simple swelling, sometimes there are deep stitches used to hitch the deeper tissues to the firm fascia behind the ears and another reason can be the fact that there are some nerves close to the ear that are inevitably divided during surgery which take some time to settle down. Keep checking with your surgeon but it can take a few weeks for this discomfort to settle. 

I hope that is useful information.

best wishes for your final outcome.

Tariq Ahmad, MBBChir, FRCS(Plast)
Cambridge Plastic Surgeon

Waves of Pain in Right Ear One Week Post Op

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When the skin is separated from the underlying tissues during surgery, small sensory #nerves are cut. Varying degrees of numbness will be present after surgery and will improve gradually as the nerves reconnect to the skin. This process can take from 2-6 months for face, neck and cheeks, and to 9-12 months for the forehead and scalp. Muscle weakness may also be present around the mouth especially if liposuction is used. This typically recovers fully in the months after surgery.

As the nerves regenerate, the itching, burning, tingling and shooting #sensations will occur. Ice, moisturizers and gentle #massaging are helpful during this phase of the #healing process. Frequently there is a tight feeling in the neck, jawline and cheek after a facelift. During surgery, not only the skin but the underlying muscles are tightened to create a better and longer lasting result. 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.
Some degree of firmness or lumpiness under the skin is normal after surgery and will resolve with time. Local massage will speed resolution of this problem, which normally takes 2-4 months to disappear completely. 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.

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

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Healing Process After Facelift

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Thank you for your questions, it is not untypical to experience pain in your ears, due to swelling, make sure you follow your surgeon protocol for recovery/ aftercare.  Please make sure you see you plastic surgeon for regular follow up to ensure the healing process is positive with no sign of infection.

All The Best 

Post op pain

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It isn't out of the ordinary to experience pain in one or both ears. However, I always think it best to err on the side of caution so I would recommend that you schedule an appointment with your surgeon to rule out infection.


Kouros Azar

Kouros Azar, MD
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Ear Pain After Facelift

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Thanks for your question.  You are not too far out of surgery, so having a little discomfort is quite normal.  Certainly be examined by your surgeon just to be sure, but this could be caused by sutures, nerve irritation or just plain swelling.  Be patient, but do check with your surgeon.  Best of luck!

Facelift #faceliftrecovery #fatgrafting #beauty #tmbcosmeticsurgery #woundhealing

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Dear Nadiaa1

Thank you for your question!  Please see your surgeon and have your ear examined.  Pain can be due to ear canal blockage, infection, nerve irritation or an unrelated inner/middle ear infection.

With Warm Regards

Trevor M Born MD

Trevor M. Born, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 126 reviews

Facelift recovery

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It is common to have discomfort of the ears postoperative face lift. Keep your head elevated 30 degrees at night by putting a sofa pillow behind your bed to keep your head up at night.  This will take time to resolve, See your plastic surgeon to make sure you do not have an infection. Steroids can sometimes help prevent swelling and could help swollen ears. Take two Tylenol tabs for pain every 4 hours. I hope you feel better. Good luck...

Larry Weinstein, MD
Morristown Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Face lift - waves of pain on one side after a week

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Thank you for asking about your face lift recovery.

  • One cannot say if this is normal without knowing your history and examining you.
  • That said, the onset of one-side pain a week after any surgery would not be normal healing.
  • Please contact your own surgeon and report what is going on.
  • After surgery, an on-line plastic surgeon can't diagnose you or treat you if there is an issue.
  • So let your own surgeon take care of you - the cost is included in your surgical fee.

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

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.